What was your inspiration behind Tiba & Marl?
It came about mainly as a result of having babies ourselves and not being able to find any baby changing bags that fitted our own style. At the time there were no bags on the market that we felt met our needs stylistically as well as practically, which is when we realised that we should just create it ourselves!
We were passionate about creating a brand that was both contemporary and sartorial but also unisex.
You have quite a celeb fan base. What A-List Mums & Dads would you love to see wear your bags?
We have been lucky enough to include Russell Brand, Fearne Cotton, Jessie Ware, Jamie Winstone, Stormi Bree, Angela Scanlon, Greg Rutherford, Binky Felstead and lots of others as fans of the brand, but there are loads of others we’d love to see with our bags, such as Kirsten Dunst, Beyonce and Susie Bubble.
Where does the name Tiba & Marl come from?
It is a mix of letters from our maiden names and initials of our kids and our names. We knew from the get-go we wanted it to be a bit of an ambiguous name – that didn’t dictate its end-use.
We absolutely love the versatility of your bags, for our readers who aren’t in the know. Can you tell us the key practicality & aesthetics about the bags?
We think the fact that they don’t look anything like traditional baby bags is one of the most impactful things about our brand.
We combine modern graphic prints and premium and high-tech materials yet always ensure the bags are super functional…creating a stylish yet practical design.
All our bags are water resistant and wipe-clean inside and out, they all include a luxury padded changing mat, an insulated bottle holder, a multitude of pockets AND a coordinating wet clutch (that comes with a cross body strap so is great for wet items but can be used as a separate cross-body bag).
We focus on trend driven shapes – sports-luxe backpacks, stylish totes, chic holdalls etc – meaning all our bags offer a life beyond the nappy changing phase.
Do you have any favourite styles?
It’s impossible to choose and we probably change our minds every day! Luckily we get to use different bags from the collection all the time, depending on what our look that day may be. I think my (Lydia) current T+M crush is our Miko Bumbag – I wear it cross-body and it’s so useful the keep your stuff so close to hand! Anna’s fave is our new Lilac Miller backpack – it’s the hue of the season and just sooooo pretty!
What are both of your backgrounds?
We both have a background in Bag and Accessories Buying and Design, I (Lydia) was a Footwear & Accessories Designer and had worked for fast-fashion high street UK brands all the way through to luxury NY brands. Anna was a Senior Bag Buyer working for Topshop and Urban Outfitters.
How did you form a duo?
We met each other in our first job as Junior Designer and Assistant Buyer, nearly 15 years ago (eek) and kept in touch. It was after a conversation over a lunch date when our first babies were still babies that we came up with the idea for Tiba + Marl.
When you are not busy working, what do you like to do to unwind?
In all honesty, I don’t think we ever even had a minute to unwind in the first two years of business, but recently we have tried to be a bit stricter with our working hours, and have really focused on trying to down tools at the weekend (apart from our Instagram obvs!).
Unwinding can be anything to a dinner out with friends, a Saturday morning cinema trip with the kids, or even just leaving our phones in the other room so we can actually enjoy watching a film with our husbands!
Living in London, can you recommend some favourite family friendly spots (restaurants/shops/cafés)?
We live West/North West and both love Kew Gardens, the Southbank, all the wonderful museums and galleries etc.
London has some amazing children Theatres that we like to take the kids to too – Lyric Hammersmith, The Polka Theatre, Unicorn Theatre etc
Do you have any exciting projects you are working on that you can share with our readers?
We can’t really share too much at the moment, but we seem to be always beavering away on something top secret and exciting 😉
What advice would you give mums out there who want to start their own business?
You need to be so motivated and driven towards a specific end goal. We both ‘gave up’ really successful careers to start our own brand so we had to succeed.
Take chances and risks, stay real to yourself and your brand, expect to worker than you ever thought imaginable and most of all LOVE what you do!
Do you have any top tips for first time mums?
Have faith in your own maternal intuition, don’t put too much pressure on yourself to get out and about super quick – enjoy those glorious early days!