Wednesday, 17 February 2016

INTERVIEW | RENEE WHYTE-COSTA OF GOLD FRANKINCENSE + MYRRH





What started as a project to create a crown for her daughter’s birthday has turned into a flourishing business for Renee Whyte. The Melbourne-based designer, who also runs a womens accessories business Wizzer and Whyte, offering beautiful leather bags and sandals as well as handmade jewellery and scarves, launched her childrens label Gold Frankincense and Myrhh in 2014. “The reaction was overwhelming,” Renee says. “The growth has been at such a fast rate - last year was a big learning curve.” It’s been a busy time for Renee, who makes all of the crowns by hand and hand-paints them too, as well as selling a selection of decor and Greek-inspired leather sandals. She has an arts degree from Monash University where she studied sculpture, printmaking and gold and silver smithing. For more than 10 years she was a visual merchandiser for Seed and Bed Bath and Table. This year she plans to expand into three more areas. “Stay tuned,” she says. “Bigger and better designs.”

Gold Frankincense and Myrrh is about to exhibit at the upcoming Kids Instyle for the third time later this week. “I make my stand light and whimsical, you can feel its handmade and from the imagination,” Renee says. “Everything’s new. Lots of glitter on show this season.” Above are images from her latest range, to be showcased at Kids Instyle.

Register now to attend the upcoming event that explores Happiness By Design. The Life Instyle and accompanying Kids Instyle trade event runs 18-21 February at the Royal Hall of Industries and Hordern Pavilion.

This post was sponsored by Life Instyle, an event I have attended many times over the years. All editorial content was produced independently. Thank you for supporting businesses that help to make this site possible. - NW 

What was behind the decision to start your brand? My daughter Florence. I just wanted to make her a crown for her birthday. Bam.

What had you been doing previously? Over 10 years as a head merchandiser for childrens stores.

What is important to you when designing children's clothes? I make what I love.

How do you try to differentiate your products from others on the market? I don’t look at what others are doing; I just create what’s in my mind.

What has been completely unexpected since starting your business? Its success - I don’t do it for that reason.

What is something that people often don't realise about your wares? They are all hand-painted, hand-cut and handmade by me.

Where do you look to for design inspiration? Colours and textures.

What do consider when dressing or styling children? Colours. I’ve always had a great understanding of it, and vintage themes.

What role do you want your products to play in a childhood? I want them to create happiness, or a memory.

What was the last great children's book that you read? Coco Chanel - my daughter makes me read it every night.


images courtesy of gold frankincense and myrrh

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