Sunday, 15 March 2015

An anatomy of...the Originals

To open, an apology. We have been woefully short of stock in recent weeks, but, (happy days, hallelujah) last week we unpacked some very large boxes full of shiny new Grubbies. And most important of all, our very-much-loved Originals are back in stock.

Originals are where Grubbies began. They are, quite simply, the perfect pair of dungarees. The dungarees we had been looking for when our children were small. The dungarees we had naively assumed would be all our children ever really wore (before we realised kids' fashion had become somewhat more complicated (often, wonderfully so) than when we were children. So...what makes the Originals so darn perfect?







1. Originals work as hard as their wearers. Little people work very hard. When you're just starting out, even toddling and sitting up straight is hard work, let alone the other stuff you want to get done. A spot of climbing. Garden gymnastics. Riding ride-ons, scooters, bikes, skateboards, Grandpas. Leaf stomping. Sand castling. Tree climbing. Playgroups. Playdates. Parks. Puddles. Originals were designed with hard work in mind. Bags of room to move comfortably and robust enough to withstand years of play (and 1,000s of washes).


2. Originals are easy on and easy off. We were a little surprised (nervous!) when first launching Grubbies that not all folks thought dungarees were as child-perfect as we did. The antipathy derived, it turned out, from an abundance of caution in the potty department. It has been a relief to later learn from customers that most children are little Houdinis confidently mastering the quick release of their Originals and, more leisurely, pulling them up again. And the wonderful thing about dungarees is that once they're on, they stay put. No tucking in untucked tops or struggling with fiddly belts or untying ties. And don't even get us started on builders' bottoms. Originals = no builder's bottom. We're not sure we have to say much more than that.


3. Originals look cool as cats on boys and girls. In an ideal world, would we like young children's clothing to be unisex? Well, for our part, not entirely - there are days for flippy summer dresses and days for spiderman suits. But for a great number of days in between, girls and boys are pretty much getting on with the same sort of stuff and there really isn't any sensible reason to expect little girls to wear clothes that are occasionally a touch inappropriate, sometimes impractical and, repeatedly, disproportionately, pink. It is a source of great delight, but no real surprise, that Originals have been just as popular with girls as with boys. I mean, who wouldn't want to look this cool, seriously?


4. Originals are all about the detailing. Yes, we like to keep things simple, but we certainly don't like to be boring and believe us, there us a lot of design in this kind of simple. We love how the piping and distinctive back-pocket embroidery, along with authentic denim hardware, give our Originals a timeless quality that looks completely contemporary but wouldn't look out of place in our own childhood photos. Oh, and it's all change this season. We've replaced our poppers with buttons which we hope everyone loves as much as we do. Although it happens rarely with Grubbies, it's always irritated us that when a popper pops off any of our children's clothes, it's basically sayonara to the outfit. But even the unhandiest of handyworkers can sew back on a button. It's all part of making Grubbies hand-downable. (And on that subject, note please how the straps on our Originals have a choice of two lengths - there's another year of wear, right there.)


Finally, another change this season. For the first time we have made our dungarees outside Great Britain, a decision we made with not a little heartache, but sad to say, we've found it increasingly difficult (and this season, impossible), to find a factory in the UK who can make Grubbies at a quality we insist on and a price that our loyal and lovely customers can reasonably be expected to pay. Our initial sadness has been greatly alleviated by the arrival of the new stock with a quality of finish that we are proud to call Grubbies. We've also been buoyed by being able to drop the price a little - how we'd love one day to calculate the cost per wear of our trusty Originals. It must be pennies.

Back in stock are Originals in all sizes with poppy or denim piping. To celebrate the arrival of new season stock, we are offering free postage and packaging to UK customers for the whole of April at our new price of £35 a pair. This way please.

So that’s the Originals in a nutshell. Do you agree with what we think makes them a true wardrobe staple? Would you change anything if you could? And let us know how you find those buttons!

Photo credits:  Customer "bottom" photos with thanks to Roi, Charlie and Freya.

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