Meet the great small businesses selling tube feeding and disability products
Since starting TubieeGo we have met a whole tribe of UK-based small businesses who are working hard to create high quality products for people with disabilities.
We thought it would be nice to introduce you to some of the wonderful people we have met. They are all people who are, quite frankly, inspiring! They have all found solutions for a frustrating problem and have then gone on to build businesses to bring this solution to other people too. Their businesses have all been born out of a personal journey or connection with disability which means that they genuinely care about your situation. And the icing on the cake is that they all produce high quality products and they do a little jig when you order from them - not something that you can say of the larger retailers!
So without further ado, here's our tribe....
I'm Zayne, owner of Tubie Kids and mum to a very special girl “Karma” who has been tube fed for over 8 yrs. Finding fashionable tube feeding friendly clothing was proving to be pretty difficult. At feeding times, we would have to fully undress her to get to her MIC-KEY feeding button. Our solution at the time was to cut holes in her clothing to access her feeding button or thread the feeding tube through bodysuit popper openings. This worked for a while until she started to outgrow the traditional baby onesies available in the high street shops. The clothing situation as a whole was not ideal especially when "out and about" in cold weather with respiratory issues. Let alone from a dignity point of view! Children become fashion conscious and like to look and be the same as other children. Colours and style is a way of saying who you are without having to speak. Our daughter has a bubbly and cheeky personality and we wanted feeding tube friendly clothing that reflected her personality. She inspired us and in April 2018, Tubie Kids® came to life!
Our clothing range sizes run from 12 months old to 12 years old. We have a range of colourful & fun wardrobe staples with tube feeding access for children who require incontinence pads and for children who are toilet trained.
We also have iron on patches that allow you to DIY your kids garments and create access to the feeding tube in the comfort of your own home.You can view the full collection here and you can also follow Tubie Kids on Facebook.
Groovy Tubies at Hobbyhorse Lane
I am a mum to two daughters, 3 step daughters and a son and have always had a passion for sewing and reusing rather than throwing away, hence the eco-friendly items I make and sell.
Groovy Tubies began when I started selling my handmade items in a local shop in rural Oxfordshire. After a request for tube feeding accessories I began collaborating with a friend with a tube fed son and we developed the Groovy Tubies range together.
Today I make and sell tubie pads, tubie belts, drainage bag covers, tube/port covers, bandana bibs, nursing breast pads, cloth wipes and wash bags.
You can find Groovy Tubies at Hobbyhorse Lane on their website and via Facebook
I am Louise from Little Miss Muffet Babywear. I live in Kent with my husband, four sons and one daughter. I run my business through Facebook and I have an Etsy shop.
I began my business about 5 years ago and I initially specialised in children's hats, bonnets and clothing. A good friend approached me to ask if I could make something that would help keep her daughter's NG tube out of the way when not in use. I made her a little pouch that clips onto her daughter's clothing and it worked perfectly! Not only is the tube out of the way but the colourful fun fabrics can make it a little more fun for young children and less clinical.
Since then I have developed a range of Tubie pouches and Tubie Clips which can be used for all sorts of medical tubes. I thoroughly enjoy this element of my business and I am privileged to be able to make something that is both fun and helpful!
I'm Jess, Co-Founder and Director of Willow Bug, a family run business specialising in wheelchair clothing for kids and teens. Our collection includes back fastening jackets, wheelchair snugs, ponchos, capes, coveralls and wheelchair trousers, all designed to be worn seated.
I set up Willow Bug as I was frustrated by the lack of kid friendly specialist clothing that could accommodate my daughter Willow's disability and her wheelchair. With her in mind, Willow Bug was born. All our products are handmade in the UK and are designed to fit easily over heads, legs, arms and wheelchairs.
You can find Willow Bug on their website and via Facebook, Instagram and Twitter
I’m Holly, Mum to Finley who has GDD, Hypotonia and is non-verbal, and twins Ellie and Sophie.
My husband Neil and I set up Starkidtags in June this year based on the experiences we had faced when out with Finley. To look at him, these disabilities may not be plainly obvious and so we were often met with confusing looks when our 4 year old didn’t respond to people and is sat in a pram!
The most difficult situations we had come across was when we have had to ‘spell out’ his disabilities to justify him using a pram and this is where we thought, maybe a simple tag that can be understood universally would work? We began producing the Pram Tag and as time has gone on, we have listened to the needs of other parents and built on our range. We hope to continue to make educate others of invisible disabilities and help raise awareness.
You can find Starkidtags on their website and on Facebook
I'm sure you'll agree that they're a fab tribe with great stories and great products as a result! Is there anyone else that you would add? If so, why not let us know in the comments.