Recently I was on Instagram looking at cute kids clothes and I made a list of the brands I wanted to order from online. I then went to their online shop and was ready to place some orders. Then I saw the prices. Are people insane!? Who in their right mind spends that much money on one item of KIDS clothing!? One item that will last 6 months max. I seriously wasted a whole day trying to find something nice and affordable. It didn’t happen.
I love kids clothes. Especially girls kids clothes. But I refuse to pay any mega high price for any item of clothing for the kids. My girls mess their clothes on a daily basis. Or should I say, they mess several outfits a day. And I really don’t care. I’m not going to stop them from jumping in a muddy puddle (thanks Peepa Pig, my girls now want to jump in muddy puddles all the time), or freak out if their ice cream drips on their white top, or insist they wear a bib whenever they eat (Soraya hates bibs so much she practically chokes herself to death whenever I put one on her, it’s just not worth the fight. There are bigger issues I need to save my energy for, especially when it comes to Soraya;)
So I was very interested when Nil and Basak, my friends in Istanbul said they started a kids clothing line, for every day affordable clothes. Their trademark is their jumpsuits, haremlique pants and long dresses. When I saw their collection I had to practically buy one of each design. And I was able to, because the prices are very reasonable.
I am not lying when I say that whenever Gaja is wearing one of the outfits from Atelier Petit Pas, people always compliment, and want to know where I got it (Soraya was too small for their clothes until this year, now she can start wearing them too;). Since then Nil and Basak has asked Gaja to model some of their outfits together with their own kids. The last few times we went to Istanbul they would have a photo shoot with all the kids and they have great fun doing it.
I’m so proud of my friends Nil and Basak for all the hard work they do. Here’s is my interview with them:
Q: How did the two of you meet, and how did you decide to start this company together?
Nil : We met in 2000 when I started working at Peugeot - they put my desk on the right hand side of Basak’s desk and the adventure started! We worked together for 10 years and we’ve been through a lot. Our working environment was really super fun. Yes we worked a lot but we had a lot of fun at the same time. After all these years we remember those days with great joy and a big smile ☺
But your expectations from your professional life evolves after you get married and have kids. Long working hours don’t bother you that much if you are single. But when you are in your mid 30s, married and have a child, you begin to think about your life, especially your working routine. Especially after having our second child, work life didn’t satisfy our needs. We started to think too much about our kids, and being with them at home, feeding them, playing with them etc. At some point, being at work made us unhappy.
In 2012 Basak and I were both pregnant and gave birth to our sons in 2013, Basak in April and me in May! It was the easiest decision for us both not to go back to work. We always had in our minds to build up a business but we were always very busy with our full time job and house work and our lovely but demanding kids... While we were working, we were very into online shopping. This was our starting point. Whatever we do, we were sure we were going to make it online. As we both have kids, we knew it is not easy to find extraordinary clothing for children. This was our second starting point. We decided to do clothing for children and make it online. We need to limit and concentrate on one gender so we decided to concentrate on girls as it is much more fun to create for girls. We also believe it is much more fun to shop for girls.
So we created our brand 'Atelier Petit Pas' in 2014. The company is based in Turkey but gets the inspiration from all over the world. We, as Atelier Petit Pas, aim to make girls and their mothers happy with our innovative style and extraordinary design. What do we do ? We are involved in every step. We create the design, we find the fabric, we buy buttons and zippers, all kinds of details. First we produce the first model. Then we work on it, sometimes we totally change the model and start from the beginning. Sometimes it is definitely what we want to see, so we produce it directly. But most of the times we make small changes on our first model. We work with a small independent atelier. We are still learning, make mistakes, then learn not to repeat it and make another mistake!!! I remember the first days, how unexperienced we were.
Q: Have you seen any positive changes in yourself and your children, after quitting your professional job and starting up this company?
Başak : It is the best decision ...I am so happy that I am 100% involved in my children’s daily routine. I take them to school and pick them up. When I go to my son’s school, him running to me and hugging me is priceless. I need to be very organised and plan my next day. When you have corporate work, life can be easier sometimes, you are at work all day and all you need to do is to concentrate on your work. You have little control on your children’s daily routine. You leave the house before they wake up, and come home after they finish all the homework and even finish their dinner most of the nights. When you are working home office, you are still spending considerable amount of time for your work plus you are also responsible for waking the kids, preparing them for school, do the shopping, decide what to cook for dinner, welcoming your daughter home, picking up your son, talk to them, try to share quality time with them and of course you need to be super warm and positive when your husband arrives home!!
All these may sound difficult but it is not if it is want you want. I feel that I am in control of my life. If the kids gets sick, I do not need to worry trying to find someone to look after them. I am home, and I can give my full attention, love and care. If there is a special activity at school that parents are invited to I do not feel any discomfort about asking my boss for a day off because I am the boss of my life ☺
Take a look at some of their creations here. We hope to collaborate with them in the future in order to sell their clothes to our readers, so stay in tune!