Babies born and staying at the Rangiora Maternity hospital will have the warmest little cosy toes this winter.
North Canterbury business, Cosy Toes, owned and operated in Rotherham by Tracey Topp is celebrating 10 years in business and wanted to do something for our smallest members of the community to mark the occasion. Each baby will receive a pair of little merino socks.
The inspiration to give the maternity hospital the little merino socks came when Ms Topp thought back to when she first began her business in 2005. “One of the reasons I started my business back then and still now was wanting every child to once again wear wool and think no different of it, just as I did as a child,” Topp says.
Ms Topp grew up on a sheep farm in Cust. She has strong memories of growing up around wool and these memories have now turned into a passion through her business which specializes in merino wool socks.
The orders come in via her website and then get shipped all over New Zealand and different parts of the world. The business began because she couldn’t find wool socks for her two pre-school boys to wear which lead her to find out what had happened to New Zealand’s home grown wool industries and products over the past years.
Wool products including little merino socks in baby and children’s sizes had completely gone out of our market. Her business although, is not just about retail it also promotes the benefits of wearing wool. “The socks are made from merino which is a premium natural product and so I have to promote why it’s great to wear a quality fibre on your feet,” explains Ms Topp.
“Most people know the difference, but a lot still don’t. There is a difference between paying a couple of dollars for example for a pair of socks made from another material and a price for the best socks in the world made from merino.”
The business has expanded from start up from the few little sizes that were then stocked to catering for men and women plus many more wool related products. Babies wearing wool will of course be kept warm; it is breathable and doesn’t trap moisture so helps to regulate a baby’s temperature naturally. Suzanne Salton, Charge Midwife and Manager of Rangiora Maternity Hospital is promoting the Rangiora babies to be dressed in wool clothing.
“We are all trying to encourage mothers to use wool for their babies; we also give a woollen hat to every baby before they go home.”
Ms Topp said the Canterbury District Health Board website was including wool in the list of recommended clothing for new babies with wool with hats, beanies and bootees.
“Maybe one day I will be able to give all new babies in New Zealand a pair of new merino wool socks but for now I’ll start with the Rangiora babies and I hope their little feet will be a little bit warmer!”
Rangiora Maternity Hospital - May 2015.