This month is a very special anniversary for the hutch&putch team: we are turning 4! Hard to believe how such a beautiful story developed from an idea! hutch&putch would like to thank everyone who has accompanied us in this development. On this special occasion we would like to show you a side of hutch&putch that you don't get to see otherwise. We spoke to the founder Josephin de Souza and give you a few very private insights behind the scenes.

Josephin de Souza founder hutch&putch

1. This month hutch&putch turns 4 years old. How does it feel to see everything that has become of hutch&putch over the last few years?

"It's incredibly emotional for me", Josephin tells us. She says she likes to look back to the beginnings, those crazy times, and how it all gradually grew out of an idea and a fascination with the material muslin. She founded the label in August 2017 without knowing where the journey was going. When she starts selling muslin towels, her son is just under a year old. She remembers boxes and boxes in her living room. "I mostly worked nights and packed all the packages myself. During the day my son was happy to unpack the prepared packages and carry towels back and forth."

Josephin says she didn't realize before hutch&putch what you can do if you really want it and fight for it. It makes her very proud to see how the label has developed. She would like to pass this experience on with hutch&putch: "I hope that this is also a message for other women and mothers that encourages and maybe also inspires!"

2. What made you decide to found your own company back then?

Before Josephin founded hutch&putch, she worked for a DAX company for many years. There she took a lot with her, learned and experienced a lot. Over time, the desire to create something of my own became more and more tangible. "I've always wanted to make a difference and I want to see what I can change with my work." Josephin says that she is aware that we in Germany grow up with an incredible number of privileges and opportunities. That is not an achievement, but due to chance. This contributed significantly to the desire to give something back to the world. Josephin simply wanted more. At the latest when she had her own children, she became aware of the role model function one assumes as a parent. Josephin wants to set an example for her children in what she herself thinks is right and important. "With hutch&putch I can do exactly that, be a role model for my children, says Josephin.

When asked whether Josephin would describe herself as an idealist, she initially answered no. However, there is a sparkle in every person who is aware of his own responsibility and, as a consequence, strives for the realization of certain ideals and fights for them with body and soul, which should be contagious.

3. What are you most grateful for?

"When it comes to me personally, it's my healthy, beautiful children. Seeing her bright and happy every morning is beyond words and without thinking that will always be the biggest thing for me." As for hutch&putch, she is just very happy for it , to have the chance to live her dream, thanks in large part to the support of her husband. Sheenjoy the diverse team with whom she now works together day after day"Working in a place where everyone can contribute their own qualities and characteristics is great really inspiring and a lot of fun." Motivating each other again and again within the team is something we all benefit from and it's such a nice feeling, not just for Josephin.

4. What is your day-to-day work like?

Josephin laughs at first when asked this question. "Well, you could say that I usually start working while my kids are still asleep. While I'm preparing breakfast, I check my e-mails and get an overview of what's planned for today." Once she has brought her two children to kindergarten, her working day begins. On Mondays we start the new week with a team meeting. It makes sense to vote und the exchange is valuable for everyone. Despite the increasing structure at hutch&putch, the topics often vary on a daily basis. "I often lend a hand operationally as well. Things happen that nobody planned but have to be done. Then I get in the car and pick up goods from our sewing shop that have to be sent to the warehouse very quickly. The afternoon belongs to the children alone. In the evenings, work often continues when the children are in bed.” She still loves packing parcels herself in the warehouse. "It's a pleasure to see what is ordered and it's a great feeling to ship it!"

5. Was there a point where you experienced challenges or setbacks that made you doubt and where you wanted to give up everything?

Starting and running a business is a lot of work, a lot of responsibility, a lot of pressure. But there were rare moments when Josephin would have liked to give up everything. Because putting your whole heart into one thing also means that there is less room for other things and that private life is neglected in some places. "I actually like to remember one of my first big setbacks with the company." Josephin had started producing and selling sleeping bags at the time, and the demand grew very quickly, which is why they started looking had to look for a new seamstress. And because of the enthusiasm and motivation to be able to continue offering the new product quickly, she became imprecise with her specifications for the seamstress. The result: 80 sleeping bags that were not at all what they should be and therefore could not be sold. "I was so motivated that I ignored hurdles," she recalls. Financially, that was a lot of damage and it wasn't easy for her to turn down interested customers. “These are moments when everything got to be too much for me and I asked myself whether it made sense to continue. But I always pulled myself together and resolved: I'll never make a mistake like that again!" Today Josephin knows how important these setbacks are, because you grow from them and are prepared for everything that is yet to come. "That's why I deal openly with mistakes in our team."

To date, there hasn't been a time that she hasn't had fun working on hutch&putch, she explains. "It gives you strength and motivates you for one or two night shifts." Nevertheless, it's important to have time off and slow down. She also learned that in the last 4 years.

6. How did the name hutch&putch come about?

"The inspiration for the name hutch&putch came from my first son," explains Josephin. There's a nice story about this: Since her husband is Brazilian, her father's cousin used to affectionately call her son “chucrute”, which translates to sauerkraut. The nickname "hutschi" then developed from this.

When it came later to finding a name for the company, Josephin took it very easy and didn't give it that much thought. Being a children's label, it should be fun and positive, but also personal. And what could be more personal than your own child? That's how hutch&putch came about, of which her son is very proud. 

7. Where should your company be in the future?

Josephin finds this question difficult to answer. "I'm not a visionary, but more of a doer and only ever see the immediate next step ahead of me. There is so much going on in life and it is difficult to predict what is to come. If hutch&putch continues to develop so positively, we will have the opportunity to move and change more. With hutch&putch, I would like to continue to do things that are important to me, such as treating people fairly and preserving our nature." But she does have a vision: "It would be a huge success in being able to put pressure on the industry so that fabrics can finally be produced more sustainably and textiles with a good image are no longer just a niche product." In the end, the maker gives a glimpse of the future: "I believe that muslin will soon be primarily associated with hutch&putch in German-speaking countries."

Author: Jane-Lee Fromm

Eliane Wikert
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