Mimi Tsang Hello Shiso x Mini Maven

Hello Shiso Founder and Designer Mimi Tsang brings us perfectly curated hair accessories for children with her undeniably adorable collections. Mimi’s goal is to create lasting memories for your child with her playful motifs, colorful palettes, and textured hair accessories. We love the chic, soft metallics, sweet animals motifs, rainbow colored pom-poms, & favorite childhood flavors of summer fruits. For the dreamers, grab the shooting stars that will surely fly your little ones imagination to the moon! SWOON!

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KYMBERLY MARCIANO: Tell us, what inspired the creation of Hello Shiso? And how did you come up with the name for your brand?

MIMI TSANG: I’ve always wanted to have my own creative business, and after the birth of my children, I started sewing things for them, which grew into a business.  Initially, I wanted to have a gender-neutral line, but the hair accessories are the part of the business that took off.  I hope to get back to designing for boys one of these days.  The name “hello shiso” came from a nickname that my friends gave me years ago.  Shiso is actually an herb used in Japanese cooking which is a relative of basil.

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KM: From where do you draw your inspiration?

MT: Everywhere!  I get ideas from our neighborhood walks, my children’s drawings, our travels abroad.  We just came back from Japan, and I always find it such an inspiring place where there is so much thought and art put into everything.

KM: How have your own children inspired your creations?

MT: If I were left to my own devices, my designs would probably be more minimalist, since that’s the way my taste runs.  But in seeing the way they like to dress and play, I’ve come to embrace fun, color and pattern.  They’re even trickling into my own wardrobe, which is no longer a sea of grey and black.

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KM: Do they assist with designing from time to time?

MT: I’ve been surprised about how much my kids think about my business, which they don’t do with my husband’s work.  I guess this comes from having my studio in my backyard and my products all over the house, but they always want to talk about hair clips and see my latest designs.  They are constantly offering suggestions for designs!  Most of the time, their ideas are too complicated to be translated into actual hair clips, but I love hearing their ideas.  And they always have ideas for photo shoots, especially my son, who is always looking for opportunities to be as involved as his sister.

KM: How important is it to keep up with the ever-changing fashion trends?

MT: It’s not as important to me, since my accessories are not trendy, though you can’t help but be influenced by what’s going on all around you.

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KM: What was your all-time favorite accessory as a child?

MT: I was born in Taiwan and my mom used to buy me Japanese hair accessories.  I have really strong memories of two of my favorite hair clips – one of a strawberry, and another was a set of tiny straw hats.  One of these days I’m going to recreate that straw hat clip.

KM: What is the one accessory that every kid needs?

MT: A cute bag for carrying all their stuff.

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KM: Do you see accessory trends influencing kids’ style?

MT: Yes, it does trickle down a bit, though designs for kids will always have that fun, childish quality to it which will defy all trends.

KM: What would make a great gift for a child from your current collection?

MT: Our rainbow of pompom clips make a great gift, since it’s a set that comes in really adorable packaging.  The manager of one of our stores tells me that when they run out of our pompom clips, customers will get angry, because that is their go-to gift for little girls!

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KM: Tell us about your hair-do tutorials on your blog!

MT: I love to brush and style my daughter’s hair, and we always have fun creating elaborate hairdos for our photo shoots, so it was just an extension of what we do at home.  On good days, that is, because often she leaves for school without even brushing her hair.

KM: Do your kids express playfulness through their accessory choices?

MT: My daughter loves to dress in themes, and her accessories always match.  She’s a head to toe kind of girl.  Now that my son is older, he’s not as adventurous as he used to be.  I loved it when he used to wear shiny leggings and carry all his stuff around in the totes that I made for him.

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KM: Is there always a theme to your collections? Do you do it by trend or by the season?

MT: I try to create designs that fit seasonally, but often it’s just the designs that I’ve been working on.  Sometimes I work on an idea for a season or two, reworking it until it finally comes together.  Other times, I’ll sit on on idea until the season seems appropriate.

KM: Where can we buy your adorable accessories? Can your products be found in any stores?

MT: We love all the independent clothing and toy stores that we work with, both brick-and-mortar and online, and they are our biggest customers and supporters.  We are available all over the US and around the world.  We also have our own store, where we sell our own designs and also many accessory “finds” from my travels.

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For Fun:

KM: Shark diving, bungee jumping, or skydiving?

MT: Bungee jumping

KM: Do you have a sweet tooth or a savory tooth?

MT: Definitely a sweet tooth!

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KM: What motivates you?

MT: I definitely love having a creative job and being my own boss.  Often it’s scary and most of the time it’s  exhausting, but I love being able to make my own rules and forge my own path.

KM: What do you think about Mini-Maven?

MT: I love Mini Maven!  You guys have a great aesthetic and impeccable taste, and I can’t wait to see the print magazine!

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