Styling by Minikin is a dream come true for Belinda Grinter. She has spent most of her life as a health professional but took a leap of faith and has created a job for herself that could not be more her. Now, she is the Central West’s go-to for any styling or creative need, whether it’s weddings and events or styling products for editorials, social media and websites.
Tell us a little about your business Styling by Minikin.
Styling by Minikin is a personalised creative styling service that specialises in unique and memorable experiences for people, whether it be a small dinner party in your own home, a wedding, a styled product shoot, in-store merchandising or a styled interior editorial. Styling by Minikin specialises in providing bespoke, artistic, and individual styling services.
My previous career as an Occupational Therapist gave me an appreciation for the psychological and sensory value of creating specialised atmospheres and experiences, and this is something that underpins my approach to all my styling services.
It started out as colourful and provocative to catch the community’s attention, and it worked! My business snowballed from a side hustle to a full-time job. Every event and styled product shoot is uniquely curated and individualised. No wedding or event has ever been recreated.
It still shocks me to think this business has only been functioning formally for 12 months. In that time, I have had the absolute pleasure of working with Jumbled, Incy Interiors, Groundstone Café, Ross Hill Wines, Whitney Spicer x Fenton and Fenton product launches, Confetti Rebels styling product launch, Orange food week, Sampson Street lunch and becoming a recommended stylist for the Wed Shed wedding and events directory.
How did the idea for Styling by Minikin come about?
As I mentioned, my background is as an Occupational Therapist, despite also applying to the Whitehouse Institute of Design after school. I’ve had a longstanding passion for styling my own home and have always created a unique and fun atmosphere when entertaining friends and family. I have also always been obsessed with magazine editorial styling and the pure joy of recreating different styled looks in my own home. But I shied away from the creative option and instead went into a health career as, at the time, this seemed like the safe option.
I wasn’t surrounded by anyone that had ever made a living or career out of the creative industry! But my career did allow me to travel overseas and work easily. I lived in Edinburgh, Scotland, for four years, where I met my husband (who was also from Sydney). He is the one responsible for our move to Orange 14 years ago, where we still live with our two children.
Having spent over 20 years in healthcare caring for others, it took a toll and caught up on me. I was severely burnt out! Having specialised in mental health for 14 years of that time, I value the impact positive sensory, psychological, and emotional experiences can have on the development of pleasurable experiences and positive memories for people. Styling by Minikin allows me to incorporate skills, knowledge, and passions from my previous career to enhance further the service and products that I deliver now to my customers.
The business has evolved from table styling to what it is today, with most people seeking my services through Instagram. My first big gig was in 2021 for an International Women’s Day charity event. Until then, I had only done personal styling and started by posting on Instagram. Being a charity event, the challenge was to create an atmosphere with impact without breaking the bank. The event was a great success, the atmosphere was joyous, and most importantly, a lot of money was raised! People were really impressed by my painted gum leaves. Often, the best ideas come from having a limited budget. It forces you to think more creatively.
What has been the most rewarding aspect of starting your own business?
Proving to myself and my children not to let fear stop me from doing what I want. And proving to myself that I have been able to do what I thought I was not capable of doing. But one of the most rewarding aspects of this job has been receiving feedback from customers that I have exceeded their expectations. You can’t get much more rewarding than that!
What’s on the horizon for styling by Minikin in 2023? I don’t want to be known only as Bel, the crazy colour girl, though, so this year, my focus is more on showcasing my versatility and the variety of other styles that I can produce. I am a lover of colour, but I am also a lover of simplicity and elegance, but an injection of personality or quirkiness will always be an essential element!
I will invest in my professional profile and branding and focus on expanding my services to the greater Central West. I am also launching a branch business STYL Collective, with Katie at Groundstone. We will be specialising in boutique and beautiful styling pieces and crockery items to hire for events, along with a styling service for various events.
I have been on my first podcast, talking as a person who uses flowers for business, which was lots of fun and something I would love to do more of. I would like to try and focus more on editorial styling. It’s always been a dream of mine to style for magazines! This year, I would love to do more collaborations with other businesses, so if you think that’s you, get in touch!
Location: Orange | NSW
Photography: Olive & Ferne