We’re once again visiting a New Zealand-based shop this month: MintSix, owned and operated by Talia O’Connor and her sister. Talia works hard to source beautiful goods like African Bamileke juju hats, Scandinavian decor, prints by New York-based artists from New York and also offers range of Australian and New Zealand brands. Not only does MinSix carry wares from around the globe, the shop also features interior design services by Talia as well. Let’s learn a little more about this gem:
Why did you pick this city/neighborhood/storefront?
It’s away from the CBD, in a quiet suburb where I live and my children go to school so it’s very convenient! As we are predominantly an online business, we weren’t actively seeking a storefront but when this one came up and was two minutes from home it was too good an opportunity to turn down.
Where did you get the name for the store?
I started the store with my sister and between us we have six children (Ella has 4 & I have 2) I had just moved from Australia before we opened the store. A commonly used phrase there to describe something amazing is ‘mint’. So MintSix was born.
Has it changed much since it opened? How?
Since we opened the store, I have started doing a lot of interior design in the local area so I now split my time between the retail side of the business and the design side.
What’s one of the challenges you have with the business?
The majority of our products are imported so the main challenge is maintaining our stock levels. Sometimes there can be shipping & customs hold ups and goods take longer than expected to arrive.
What other stores have you worked in before opening this one?
Before starting my own store, I was an International School Teacher, so this is a big break away from what I have been doing since University.
What’s your favorite item in the store right now?
My favorite item is this Bamileke Juju Hat from Cameroon [pictured above].
What is this season’s theme/inspiration/story?
Metallics still seem to be going strong and marble, leather and concrete are also very popular. We carry a range of concrete products from an Australian company called Zakkia that have been hugely popular.
Are you carrying any new products and/or undiscovered gems you’re particularly excited about?
We have a beautiful range of jewelry from Linda Tahija, an Australian based jewelry designer. We are also taking pre-orders for the famous Stendig Calendar that will arrive on our shores in October.
What’s been a consistent best seller?
Uashmama paper bags from Italy. They are a bag that feels like leather, wash like fabric and are made from washable paper.
Does the store have its own line?
We are in the process of starting our own line and have some cool products coming soon.
Any special events/exhibits/pop ups/collaborations coming up?
We always attend the Australian Trade fairs which run in Sydney and Melbourne twice a year. The Melbourne fair is in July.
Do you have anything from the store in your own home?
Yes! Far too much but it’s the nature of the job, I buy what I love and inevitably quite a bit of it ends up in my own home.
What’s next for you and your store?
We are manufacturing our own range of products and the interior design arm of the business is growing, which is really exciting as I’m passionate about design and love helping people create a stylish home they can be proud of.
Visit MinSix at 290 Highgate, Roslyn, Dunedin, New Zealand or online here.