In Crouch End, North London, you can find the children’s boutique Mini Kin. This long-standing fave with locals is filled with gorgeous clothing, accessories and gifts with a much-appreciated surprise in the back. Where the racks of beautiful kids’ clothing ends you’ll find a surprisingly spacious hair salon, flooded with natural light from a skylight above.
We were invited to come try the salon and both my kids (aged 6 and 8) had their hair cut after we had a good nosey around the shop. The salon is really well laid out with five salon chairs and plenty of toys to keep kids occupied while they sit still for their snip and style. The hairdressers did a good job listening to what each kid wanted and followed through well on their requests. My daughter’s cut was finished with a cute plait that she refused to take out for two days she loved it so much.
We asked Mini Kin owner Amanda, a Crouch End local and mum to three teenagers, a few questions about owning and running a beloved local shop.
You became owner of Mini Kin in 2015 – why did you decide to take on the shop, what excited you about running your own kids’ boutique?
I had always wanted to run my own business and I got very excited when I saw Mini Kin was on the market. As a long standing customer, I loved the concept of the clothing and gift shop working alongside the children’s hair salon. Taking over Mini Kin in 2015 I wanted to bring in my own style to the clothing choices and an updated creativity to the brand, whilst maintaining the excellent customer service that Mini Kin was – and still is – known for. After all, Mini Kin has been a Crouch End landmark since 2001! I refurbished the salon and shop in 2018.
How do you choose what brands to stock – what role does sustainability play?
Choosing the brands to stock in the shop is one of my favourite parts of the job! I look for unique, fun brands that you can’t find just anywhere. I also make sure we stock a range of everyday affordable pieces. Sustainability is very important at Mini Kin and we are always looking to improve on our own journey. I do find that the brands I like to work with have very good sustainability policies these days, they have to.
What is the toughest part of running a small business?
Sometimes there are long hours and you are never really off duty. It can spill over to my home life, but I have three amazing children and they are at an age now where they can be involved in some aspects and often help out in the shop at the weekends.
What is the most rewarding?
The most rewarding for me is being on the shop floor, working with an incredible team. When we hear positive feedback from our customers, whether it’s compliments on how the shop looks or excitement over a new haircut – it creates a real buzz for us all. The Mini Kin team are just brilliant.
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