The Dishcloth Lady

The journey that made us...

It started with a kiss... Five years on, a wedding, half-way around the world, bringing together family and friends from Germany to New Zealand, we found ourselves standing in our newly renovated kitchen, trying not to stare at one manky, disposable dish cloth hanging over the tap in all its grossness. It didn't help that my aversion to throwing things into landfills meant the cloth was definitely past its prime. 

A few weeks later, low and behold, we received the ingenious HAPPY SiNKS Magnetic Cloth Holder from our wonderful German friends, to discreetly hang our unsightly dish cloth within the sink and not in full view of the kitchen...

This was 'the moment' I started my quest to find a decent dish cloth that looked the part in our new kitchen while not requiring to be replaced each week. 

Over the next couple of years, with work and travel taking me far and wide, I tried and tested a number of different products. But it wasn't until we were visiting family in Germany that I discovered the concept of knitted cotton dishcloths. Curious (and a little skeptical), I splashed out a whopping 20 euros but instantly fell in love!

They were a winner!

A few months later when our 14 year old son announced he wanted to do a school trip to Nepal in partnership with World Challenge. we decided it was the opportunity for him to raise the funds he needed by selling the cloths at local markets, while also learning about business, selling and striving for a goal.

In January of 2020, he and 14 other kids were having the trip of a lifetime when Covid started to hit the headlines. Fortunately, they saw out their trip creating many wonderful memories and stories along the way. 

With the goal achieved, the question remained, what do we do now? We had a wonderful supportive community that absolutely fell in love with the products and the story behind them. But working full time and continuing to attend markets every weekend... meant something needed to change.

It was not long after that, that New Zealand (and particularly Aucklander's) found ourselves in extended lockdowns.  My consulting work was in flux while corporates were scrambling to deal with this new normal, so I threw myself into building a website to take the business online. 

But with spiraling costs and constrained supply chains, and more and more requests from retailers wanting to sell the cloths, we took the leap to start our own manufacturing journey.

After 25 years of being known for my game-changing insights and pricing strategy, I struggled for the longest time to reconcile with being known as 'The Dishcloth Lady' by the thousands of market goers who we crossed paths with over the past five years. But the encourage and support I get everyday means I am slowly learning to embrace this new identity ;p

It's definitely been a journey and I'm immensely proud of the growth and reputation for the stylish, sustainable, quality products ecovask is becoming known for. 

This year our focus is on extending availability in retailers throughout New Zealand and continuing to bring little moments of joy into kitchens everywhere, one dish cloth at a time. 

Happy cleaning :D

Viv x


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