A spur of the moment decision to open a children’s boutique in Warkworth has launched recent arrival Niomi Kelly into the world of retailing.
The idea for her new shop, Nought 2 Twelve, in Riverside Arcade, was hatched while visiting the area from Hanmer Springs.
“My husband Geoff and I were keen to leave Canterbury and the earthquakes, and initially looked at the Kapiti Coast,” Niomi says. “Geoff wasn’t keen on Auckland, but when we visited Matakana we both fell in love with the area. I’d under-packed for the visit and thought I would pop in to Warkworth for some extra clothes for our one-year-old.
“I was genuinely surprised not be able to find anything and that’s when I got the idea for the boutique.”
After securing the premises, Niomi then turned to social media to identify people’s favourite brands.
“Toshi was definitely top of the list so that’s where I started.”
When the store opened last month, the shelves were stocked with both boys and girls clothes, ranging in size from 00 to 12. There are also shoes, swimwear, sleepwear, muslin cloths and blankets, and hats.
“This is just the start,” Niomi says. “Our aim is to offer quality clothes and accessories that kids will love to wear, that feel good and look great. We have a range of specialty brands and are sourcing as many NZ brands as possible. I’d love to hear from anyone locally who is making quality children’s wear, as I’d like to have a dedicated area for handmade, one-off items. We already have some lovely locally-made teddies, bibs and booties, and we’re planning to stock a small range of really nice toys.
“This is my first business and my first foray in to retailing so I’m keen to get customer feedback. I’ve also joined the One Warkworth Business Association.”
Away from the shop, Niomi and Geoff are keen sailors and like to fish.
“I enjoy arts and crafts, and Geoff is into classic and super-bike racing.”
The couple, who have settled at Omaha, say they love their new beachside lifestyle.