It seems that I am totally rubbish at blogging at the moment. I have no other excuse than time, there just isn't enough of it! I have made a conscious decision not to send Dottie to nursery more than two days a week (I want to make the most of this last year before she starts school), but the downside to this decision, is that my life is a constant juggling act. But it is worth it in order to spend this precious time with my littlest. So how come I've popped back today? I'll tell you, to talk with Zoe Hannam about her beautiful online store Minor Goods, and how a change in lifestyle similar to my own, has influenced her brand.
Can you tell me a bit about your background?
"I studied constructed textiles at university, then specialised in fashion development and production. A few years ago I rediscovered my love of textiles and photography, combined with my love of homewares (and food). It started as a creative outlet whilst working in fashion which can be a crazy stressful world and grew into Minor Goods. Fashion is more about seasonal items, always something new and I wanted to create products that were timeless, that enhance your daily life and stand the test of time. I love products that are multi purpose and practical, combined with simple design in natural materials, like our new slow brew mugs and tea towels."
Why Minor Goods?
"The idea for minor goods was inspired on a work trip to Portugal. I'm passionate about product and wanted to share the creators and products stories. I created Minor Goods in 2014, to showcase and collaborate with a collective of small and traditional suppliers and artisans. Having worked for 18 years in development and production in the fashion textiles industry, I was lucky enough to meet many creative people and wanted to work with small makers to develop simple beautiful lifestyle accessories. Created using traditional techniques with an understated design aesthetic.
Minor Goods, is also a place where I can showcase and curate other guest designers that share the same design and work ethos. I also wanted to sell products which are affordable and accessible."
How does your lifestyle impact on your brand?
"About 9 years ago, I suffered from dry/stressed skin, and with the advice from my friend, I cut out dairy, cut down on bread, stopped eating so much processed food, and started only using organic beauty products. I've never looked back. I only use coconut sugar, rice or spelt flour when I bake and I try and drink green juice a couple of times a week. (But I'm not saint, it is all about balance).
A lot of how I live now, relates to Minor Goods, mainly due to getting older and wanting a slower pace of life. Also being more health conscious has influenced what I curate and develop. For example the measuring scoops were developed as I make a lot of smoothies (and bake), using oats, bee pollen, chia, etc. The slow brew mugs and linen filters were created as I am a big tea and coffee drinker. I also live in a small space, so they are great for space saving. The filters were developed as I was conscious of how many paper filters I was using. Wherever possible I choose to use only natural cosmetics, and as a result I only use natural oils in the candles, which also means they are subtle and not overpowering. The jars were chosen so they could be reused for the kitchen, for jam and chutney making, and not just be thrown away."
What makes Minor Goods different from other similar online stores?
“I work closely with makers to develop products that are exclusive to Minor Goods – the Denim Apron, Slow Brew Mug and Wooden Measuring Spoons are all examples of how I try to utilise my product development skills to create unique homewares and accessories. I also try to showcase other small creative brands: Minor Goods was Kreisdesign's first wholesale customer, I developed products with the Object Company when Catherine first started out, and I introduced Happystlhm to the UK."
Do you have any exciting plans going forward?
"As a foodie, and huge tea and coffee drinker, we will be launching exciting new gift boxes later this year, collaborating with small London brands."
All photos supplied by Minor Goods
Thank you so much for taking the time to talk to me Zoe. I have totally fallen for your perfectly curated store, and can't wait to see your new collaborations.
You can find Minor Goods here.
Have a great weekend.