Neon Collective first opened its doors ten years ago on Mount Maunganui’s main strip, but Carole Jarrett’s days of selling bohemian goods can be traced all the way back to the 1970s. She sourced traditional Balinese lace dresses from Indonesia and brought them back to sell at Auckland’s Cook St markets.
“We always had that affiliation direct to the customer,” Carole says. “We’re salespeople through and through, it’s in the blood.”
This passion for selling at markets continued with her daughter, Chloe, when the two began designing and manufacturing their own clothes in Indonesia and selling them at markets across the country.
Customers at the Coatesville Farmers Market and the Little Big Markets in Mount Maunganui were scooping up the designs with such vigour that the mother-daughter duo couldn’t keep up. They were also constantly being bombarded with the question: “Do you have a store?” “We were like, ‘We think we need to open a shop’,” Chloe laughs.
Neon Collective Mount Maunganui was born, with inspiration for the boutique being taken from 'the modern woman who likes bohemian-inspired clothing'.
The Jarretts’ ensure they take routine business trips to Bali to create their garments. “We actually travel to source it all, we don’t just look at a catalogue. Every fabric we produce we’ve actually touched".
Over the past ten years, the business has significantly grown and evolved into what it is today.
Formerly having a boutique in Ponsonby, Auckland and a concept boutique in Grove Ave, Mount Maunganui, Chloe and Carole went on to open their dream Flagship boutique and Outlet boutique in the heart of Mount Maunganui.
Stocking mainly small independent Australian designers like Spell, Arnhem, Opia, Nine Lives Bazaar and Rowie who are rarely available on the New Zealand market, Neon Collective have managed to introduce many new and emerging brands into New Zealand.
Carole and Chloe continue to nurture their own in-house label and bring their Neon Collective customers an informed personalised service so they fall in love with the designers much like they have.