AN ‘OUT OF CONTROL HOBBY’ TURNED SUCCESSFUL BUSINESS
After 10 years of freelancing, in 2007, self-taught illustrator Heather Moore could no longer contain her enthusiasm for pattern. She rented a studio on Cape Town’s Long Street and started making papercuts and patterns inspired by everyday things and mid-century style, which she screenprinted onto fabric. She named this new part-time venture Skinny laMinx, after her skinny little siamese cat, Monkey.
By 2009 the studio was so busy with retail and wholesale orders that Heather made Skinny laMinx her full-time job. What started as an out-of-control hobby became more like a viable business!
A STROKE OF LUCK AND A BRAND NEW STUDIO SPACE
In 2011, though, Heather hit a problem; the landlords were demolishing her studio. She decided to rent an oil-covered scooter shop on Bree Street, just a short walk away from her home, without a clue that it was a lucky find and brilliantly strategic move.
Soon the rest of Bree Street started to flourish and Heather found herself at the heart of Cape Town’s bustling new strip of restaurants, galleries and shops. Within a year of moving into the space, Skinny laMinx leased the floor above the shop too, where a team of cutters and seamstresses worked like mad to fulfil wholesale, online and retail orders.
By 2017, the Skinny laMinx store had doubled in size and the team had grown to include a wholesale department, a marketing team, and a dedicated online store manager. Heather was delighted because this gave her more time to design and make things, which is why she started it all in the first place!
KEEPING THE FOCUS ON LOCAL COMMUNITY, SUSTAINABILITY AND HIGH QUALITY
Despite the growth of her business, to this day Heather remains committed to her local economy and industry. The team know their supply chain intimately, and keep all the production close by. Designs are screenprinted in Cape Town, and everything is cut and stitched by a small but nimble sewing team in the studio above the shop.
Quality has remained a core part of the brand and a large part of the business, from the materials used, to the hand-checking of every Skinny laMinx finished product. Sustainability is also key and Skinny laMinx fabrics are printed with waterbased inks, on natural fiber basecloth. The company hates waste, and puts offcuts and scraps to good use in the business and elsewhere.
ICONIC DESIGNS ACROSS A WIDE RANGE OF HOMEWARE AND DECOR
The Skinny laMinx aesthetic is all about midcentury style, pattern and color, with a dose of African chic. Heather has applied her signature style across a wide range homewares, including napkins, table runners, trays, pillows, planters and more.
In addition to the décor and lifestyle products, Skinny laMinx has also collaborated with Sarza’s wallpaper studio Robin Sprong, to bring their much loved designs to your walls too. We offer a full, hassle-free design consultation and local installation service, so if you’d like to add the Skinny laMinx wow-factor to your walls, don’t hesitate to get in touch.
WHY WE LOVE SKINNY LAMINX
What’s not to love? A female entrepreneur creating bold, African-inspired designs using bright colors and mid-century style. We love the touch of playfulness and fun that Heather’s designs bring to even everyday items such as dishcloths and aprons. Her Skinny laMinx signature style is truly unmistakable. Heather turned her passion into a flourishing business by sticking to her vision, ethos and style. We love to see artistic collaborations between the Sarza family of brands, so seeing Skinny laMinx-Robin Sprong wallpaper on our clients’ walls is a particular joy.