Jacinta and Alicia are the creative minds behind Little Potion Co, a beautifully whimsical brand that creates magical, mindful potion kits for kids with nature-based ingredients. Through creative play, these kits support children's emotions, teach belief in themselves, and encourage outdoor activity. Little Potion Co is also the proud winner of Life Instyle's New Breed Scholarship for Sydney 2021!

Life Instyle sat down with the dynamic duo to discover the stories behind their unique brand and what they're most looking forward to at their first trade show. 

Tell us a bit about the story behind Little Potion Co; your inspiration, the meaning behind your designs, your brand mission, etc.

We are sisters Alicia and Jacinta. We spent our childhood looking for fairies, building make believe worlds and making potions and elixirs in the backyard. When we grew up the magic disappeared. Now that we have our own kids, we are always looking for ways to get them outside into nature and encourage their imagination. The Little Potion Co makes fun sensory potion kits which help create a positive mindset. Our mission is to add a little joy and magic to the world and we hope that our spells and potions can help children become more positive and trusting in themselves. We are inspired by our own childhood, our children and our wonderful customers who we are so happy to create for. We wanted our kits to be nostalgic but also modern and fun. We both have a design background but early on in our design process we came upon the artwork of the extremely talented illustrator and photographer Hannah of Twinewood Studio. We just adored her work and we have worked with her from the beginning. She created our logo and all of the beautiful illustrated elements of our kits. She just gets us.


What sets Little Potion Co apart from other magic-based toy brands?

We always wanted to create a fresh and modern take on potion and magic play. We wanted all of our ingredients to have positive associations and we always make sure we can explain where an ingredient comes from (i.e our mermaid scales - did you know mermaids shed their scales and some of their magic is retained in them?). This mindful element of our kits is what really sets us apart. Our cards all have positive spells which can really come true for young kids such as a potion for self love, a spell to calm the beast inside you and an elixir to give you the confidence of a mermaid. On one side of the spell cards is a corresponding affirmation to amplify the magic. Our kits also come with a potion stone amulet that kids can infuse with the magic of their potion and carry with them in times of need.

What were the first steps you took to launch? And what would you say was the scariest part/your biggest fear?

We designed and tested for a year before we launched. We wanted to make sure that what we were putting out there was going to do what we intended and support a positive mindset. We had a lot of friends with kids test the products and by the time we were ready to launch, we already had some really great positive feedback and testimonials. Along the way we built up a following on Instagram so that by the time we were ready to launch we had a mailing list of people wanting to purchase. I guess we were a little bit worried that people wouldn’t buy our kits but we were mostly just excited to show the world what we’d been up to, tinkering away into the night. We knew that we had a very unique product and we also knew it was something that was really needed in today's fast paced world. Any small fear that we had disappeared when we had our first sale one minute after we launched! And we’ve continued to grow ever since thanks to our wonderful supporters and customers.

What sparked the idea to start this business together?

Jacinta’s son William asked for a potion kit for Christmas 2 years ago. When Jacinta couldn’t find anything to purchase herself, she made one with bits and pieces she had around the house. Jacinta told Alicia how she thought it would be a great idea for a business and Alicia said “I think so too! I want in!” Alicia encouraged the idea of making the kits a more mindful experience alongside the fun play aspect and The Little Potion Co was born.

What made you decide to apply for the Life Instyle New Breed scholarship?

We are both big fans of Life in Style. Jacinta would often visit for inspiration for her interior design job and Alicia owns a gift shop, so would always head along to find new brands to stock in store and meet up with current suppliers. We knew having a stand at Life in Style would be a great opportunity for our brand and when we saw the advertising for the New Breed Scholarship, we thought it couldn’t hurt to apply. This was actually our 3rd time applying. We applied the first time before we’d even launched! The second time before we’d launched wholesale. We feel so ready to show at Life in Style now and we guess the judges could see that too. Morally of the story.. if you’re a business in your first two years of business, keep applying. You just never know!


Why do you think Life Instyle is a good fit for your brand?

Our products are thoughtfully designed and executed, australian made and unique. We know from visiting Life in Style that the audience appreciates unique, handmade and thoughtfully curated products. Life in Style are huge supporters of Australian design and new brands. We know that we will be looked after for our first step into trade show exhibiting.


What has the experience been like so far and what are you most looking forward to at your first trade show?

We’ve been so thrilled with the response and feedback about our kits from the team at Life in Style. We are often told that our kits are even better in person and we love showing off the different ingredients, the scents and the sparkly liquids in a way that can't be shown fully on camera. We look forward to being able to show and communicate the benefits of our kits to children's wellbeing and are interested to see how meeting store owners and buyers can help us to improve how we market and communicate our brand.


What do you think your customers love about your brand/product?

Although our potion kits are for children, they invoke a sense of nostalgia for our customers, the parents. They all say they wish they’d had something like this as a kid and we have to agree (that's why we created them of course). We love hearing about the mindset shifts that parents can often see in their children after creating the perfect potion and the pure joy of potion play means that kids often play with our kits for hours.


What are your personal favourite products in your collection, and why?

Well that's kind of like making us choose between our children BUT if I (Alicia) had to choose one it would probably be the Enchanted Garden Kit. But in saying that, my favourite ingredient is mermaid scales from our Moonlight Waters kit which is Jacinta’s favourite kit. We’ve also just released a wooden intention board which has a crystal/mandala grid on the other side. We are loving playing with this magical board ourselves. We are so in love with it and have found it a great way to start the day.

Who are some of the other brands at Life Instyle who you love/admire?

We both have an interiors and textile background so love textiles and pattern. We are big fans of Kip and Co and love that they launched at Life in Style with just a few samples of their products. Look at them now! We both love Karina Jambrak and she is of course an inspiration as the previous winner of the New Breed Scholarship in Sydney. We both love Tim Neve’s designs and would like a whole house in jis designs please. We’d also love to stay in his bnb in Nelson Bay. We love Olli Ella and Pretty in Pine for kids products. I (Alicia) am also a big fan of Bopo Women. Bron is such a kind soul and generous with her knowledge. Gosh there are so many! We are looking forward to seeing and meeting 5 Little Bears this year. Runners up for the New Breed Scholarship, we think they are fantastic and love watching them grow.


Can you share one of your proudest moments in business so far?

We would have to say winning the Life In Style New Breed Scholarship honestly. We have so much faith in our products and brand but it was still a big surprise to be announced as winners! It was just the proof we needed to propel us forward and know we are on the right track. It’s always so nice to be recognised for your hard work. Our customers tell us how much they love our products all the time (thanks so much!) but it was also wonderful to be recognised by our peers and others in the industry. We can’t wait to meet you all!

What is the best piece of business advice you have been given?

We believe in community over competition and love the quote “Another’s success doesn’t mean there's less for us… it shows what’s possible” (Thanks Emily Osmond for sharing that one). There is enough out there for everyone if you believe in abundance. Don’t get swept up in looking at what others are doing. Be your unique self - we even have a potion for that!


What exciting things are on the horizon for 2021 and beyond?

We have so many exciting new ideas we’re working on for new kits and potion play accessories. We’re looking forward to working with more wholesale partners and expanding our international stockists. Life in Style in February yay! And maybe a holiday.


When you’re not busy with the business, what’s your ideal way to unwind and give yourself a little bit of self-care?

We don’t have a lot of down time. But when we do it’s usually relaxing with our family and having a wine (where we usually talk about business haha) We both love camping and relaxing in nature by a river when we can get away. Now that the restrictions have eased a bit in Victoria, we hope to be able to have some more days out and time away with family.


Favourite podcast?
Alicia: So many business podcasts!: TheLotCo / My Daily Business Coach / Emiy Osmond Show / Jumbled Loves a Chat
Jacinta: Just discovered what podcasts were recently so has only listened to Dear John. She listens to music more but she also spends a lot of time talking to people on the phone so her friends are her podcasts.

Guilty pleasure?
Alicia: Instagram
Jacinta: Anything on Netflix that's Supernatural based.
Both: Chocolate - though we’re not really guilty about it.

Bucket list holiday destination?
Alicia: Do I have to choose? Japan, Great Barrier Reef or Greece maybe. Anywhere warm after living in the UK for 7 years and now living in chilly Victoria.
Jacinta: Italy - Lake Como to be specific.
Both: New York (without husbands and kids)

Last book you read?
Alicia: The Lost Flowers of Alice Heart - Holly Ringland
Jacinta: Has never been much of a reader. She got the box set of Game of Thrones 5 years ago and only got halfway through the first book. Maybe next year.