It was a pretty exciting day for Melbourne locals when Nina of fashion label Kindling and Emina of cult tights label OK OK joined forces and opened their very own shop in Collingwood. Today we chat with both Nina and Emina about what it means to take the leap and open the doors to a shop as independent fashion labels.
Tell us a bit about Kindling + OK OK shop and the concept behind it?
Our HQ retail space showcases both label’s full collections within a beautiful space. We wanted to provide a place for our customers to come, to view, try and purchase all Kindling and OK OK pieces in one place. Also it is a place where our stockists can see the upcoming collections in person without having to wait for trade shows or just buy from look books.
What was the inspiration with opening Kindling + OK OK and how did you come to work together?
We were near neighbours at a design show where we noticed that many of our customers kept going between ours stalls to buy dresses and tights that looked great together. We chatted and liked each other, did a pop up together, and then by coincidence ended up in Vietnam at the same time where I (Nina) got to show Emina around to all my favourite places. Upon return we decided to open a retail space and three weeks later the OK OK + Kindling HQ was launched. It has been a pretty magic thing.
What kind of items can we expect to find at Kindling + OK OK?
We stock our full clothing and socks and tight collections, and we represent other international brands and artists on a revolving calendar so there is always something new in store that you are unlikely to find elsewhere.
What do you love most about running Kindling + OK OK?
Having a great space to work in surrounded by beautiful inspiring products, meeting and engaging directly with our customers, and of course bouncing off each other everyday and the awesome ideas that comes from all of those things.
When you are not in your shop, what are you usually doing in Melbourne?
We might be out the back in our studio or out meeting with suppliers. In the afternoon a beer at The Gem, or a bike ride along Merri Creek, or exploring the wonderful endless delicious food around here or in our own kitchens with our mates.
What challenges have you both faced running and setting up your own business?
Consistent motivation and inspiration can be tricky to sustain, so learning how to wear lots of hats simultaneously is important whilst managing to stay dynamic, happy and healthy. Growing gracefully by being across our supply chains to deliver on time and on quality is a big challenge, however I think we a both getting ace at it. The proof is in the pudding, come and see for yourself 🙂
What new plans or aspirations do you have for 2015?
Hosting and launching exciting collaborations with like minded artists and local businesses in the awesome community we are a part of. There will be some special limited edition collections within both the brands and some accessories. Pretty exciting times!
Kindling + OK OK HQ
93 Johnston Street
Available most times, call us if you pop by and can’t see us, in case we’re bouncing around out the back, or call in advance to see if we will be around on 0423 312 903.