In Conversation With: MookieMerino
MookieMerino offers eco-friendly, safe, extremely functional, comfortable, sustainable, ethical garments which provide unique health benefits for baby. Nadine, the founder of MookieMerino having lived in 3 continents, noticed a gap in the marketplace for a truly functional sleep bag. Also knowing the unmatchable benefits of using Extra Fine pure merino wool, having lived in Australia for nearly a decade, she decided to create a product uniting practicality and high quality merino wool creating the perfect combination for baby’s comfort and parents’ peace of mind. They proudly support Every Mother Counts which helps reduce the number of maternal deaths (during pregnancy and child labour) around the world.
We speak to Nadine about why she started MookieMerino and what makes her children’s sleeping bags so special
Tell me a little about yourself, and what inspired you to create MookieMerino
I am a Canadian/Australian living in Malta, a little sunny island in the Mediterranean. I have three young kids including twins.
I had the chance to live in 3 different continents and this is where I noticed a gap in the marketplace for a truly eco-friendly and functional baby sleeping bag. Also knowing the unmatchable benefits of using pure merino wool, having lived in Australia for nearly a decade, I decided to create a product uniting practicality and high quality merino wool, creating the perfect combination for a baby’s comfort and peace of mind for parents. It was also of the upmost importance to create a sleeping bag organic and eco-friendly.
Who are your target customers, and why?
The MookieMerino customers are judicious: they know the amazing benefits of quality merino wool, are after a premium product to help their baby sleep better (and themselves!) and they are environmentally conscious.
What makes MookieMerino completely different to all the other children’s brands out there?
The MookieMerino 4-Season Sleep Bag is the only sleeping bag in the market with two layers of extra fine merino wool and certified Nurture by The Woolmark Company. The full benefits of merino wool can only be experienced if both layers of the sleep bag are made of this amazing material, which makes the MookieMerino 4-Season Sleep Bag a standout product. It is also the softest and finest quality merino wool used for baby sleeping bags. A baby sleeping bag is probably the most important piece of clothing for babies since they sleep 14 to 17 hours a day on average, making it a sound investment in a child’s wellbeing.
Why did you choose organic merino wool specifically? Talk us through the appeal.
For me it was primordial to use a fibre that would be good for both babies and the environment. It had to be the best next to skin organic fibre that could be used on a baby’s sensitive skin, whilst being machine washable. Merino wool was truly the only possible option for creating the best baby sleeping bag
What are the perks of using merino wool, both in the short-term and the long-term?
First of all merino wool is 100% natural, organic, renewable, durable, sustainable and biodegradable, making it fully eco-friendly. It is naturally antibacterial, fire resistant and skin friendly, even helping with allergies and eczema.
The most “magical” thing about merino wool is that it helps regulate the body’s temperature, which is crucial for newborns since they are not able to do so. This quality is especially important for premature babies who struggle even more with regulating their own temperature and are known to thrive better when sleeping in merino wool as opposed to other fabrics. The thermo regulation also helps to reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
Merino wool is a highly breathable fibre, pushing the moisture away from the body, avoiding sweating, making sure your baby is sleeping in the most ideal environment Merino wool is also surprisingly lightweight for making sure the baby is staying cool in warm weather and warm in cold weather. And finally it is machine washable, easy for parents, and also it doesn’t need to be washed often.
How do you maintain the sustainable nature of your production?
My suppliers are all certified and also provide certified materials. Certifications come from highly regarded organisations such as The Woolmark Company, OEKO-TEX and Business Social Compliance Initiative. The quality of the merino wool was also something I didn’t want to compromise on. It took me a while to find the right manufacturing partners but it was all worth it.
Do you find there are any limitations to your production methods as a result?
It definitely limits the number of manufacturers we can do business with since there are many who are not able to provide certification, hence they cannot prove the quality of their craftsmanship and materials as well as social commitment to their own employees.
How do you think your products really benefit babies/children, with regards to sleep?
Medical studies have proven that merino wool helps babies/people sleep better thanks to its thermo regulating properties, by wicking moisture away from the skin and being highly breathable. Babies are really in the best cocoon possible to help sleep better and longer. It also helps babies with skin conditions like eczema and allergies. There’s no other fibre matching the benefits of organic merino wool.
As a company, where do you see yourself in the next 10 years? Can we expect new products/designs/ranges/materials?
I have some big plans for MookieMerino! More products gravitating around our quality organic merino wool which are also highly functional to make the lives of both parents and babies easier.
And finally, a few pearls of wisdom from you! Run us through your recipe for great sleep, and some do’s and don’ts that we ought to follow in our pre-sleep schedules.
Each to their own and whatever makes you feel comfortable as a parent as every child is different. I am in no way an expert, however having had three young children, especially twins, we found having a routine is crucial.
Our first child was not a great sleeper from the age of six months to one year. Eventually we decided to sleep train her with the focus on her gradually learning to put herself back to sleep. It didn’t take too long before we were finally getting back to sleeping through the night.
We had to sleep train Chloé (our twin girl) many times as she was more sensitive and needed more physical contact. She would fall back into bad habits after being sick, for example, and receiving more attention. It was even more of an issue since she was sleeping in the same room as her twin brother Raphael and kept waking him up.
The hardest part in sleep training is persisting as it is not easy to hear your child scream and cry but after 2-3 nights you start seeing the results and it makes it all worth it. I believe it’s also good for kids, falling back asleep on their own quickly between sleep phases, gives them a more restful sleep.
What’s one thing you recommend we do with our night time routine for better sleep and better health?
Our night routine is bath/shower (young kids are having a bath and older prefers a shower) for the kids, brushing teeth, story time, putting them in their sleeping bag (for our two years-old twins) and then bedtime at the same time every night. I think a routine settles kids, knowing what is happening next, and calmly prepares them mentally for the big sleep. We also use white noise since one of my kids is a light sleeper and easily gets woken up by outside noise.
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