NEW YORK – Despina Kotsis is just 19 years old. Ever since she was a little girl she dreamt of designing clothes, and a year ago she made her dream come true.
She built her own company, MINX, with clothes which she designs and sells online, and her next objective is to open a store in New York.
She recently visited Greece for the first time, where she made a video to advertise not just her clothes, but also Greece; which she adores.
“For the first time in my life I visited Greece this year. It was beautiful, but I felt sad regarding the economy. I want to help Greece. I have roots in Thessaloniki, Evoia, and Halkidiki. When I went to Greece I couldn’t believe how beautiful it is. It is my home and I want to go back.”
Asked about the origin of MINX, she said, “Two years ago I was sitting at my backyard and I realized that since I was going to college soon, I should start doing something with clothes. So I thought of doing something with street wear, which is very popular.
Because I’m from New York, with so many different people, I get a lot of ideas from them. The collection doesn’t just include Greek clothes – I have influences from American fashion and Asian as well.
I chose the name ‘minx’ because while researching I noticed that all street wear collections had small names. So I looked up short words on google. I saw ‘minx’, which means stylish woman who flirts, and I liked it.”
SUPPORT FROM BIG FAMOUS GREEKS
Kotsis has been noticed by other successful Greeks. She told The National Herald, “I began just last year but the idea has been in my head for years. It’s now been one year since the beginning and it’s going really well. Nia Vardalos doesn’t even personally know me, but she supports me a lot on Instagram. She shared my collection twice on her page. So did two of Gianni Antetokounmpo’s brothers. Many celebrities are starting to see my clothes and slowly learn about my company, which I handle all by myself, I have no help. I design, produce, and photograph. It’s hard, but it’s my dream and I believe that if you work hard and you believe in yourself you’re going to make something out of it. My dream is to open a store in New York and later on have it become a chain – and of course, open a store in Greece as well.”
Despina is also studying at Saint John’s University to become a teacher.
“My parents are proud of me and support every step I take. If I have an idea or a problem we talk about it. I also love what I’m studying and I hope one day I’ll be able to do both of the things I love.”
Her impression by her first visit in Greece;
“I love Greece with all my heart. When I visited, I was at Lagonisi and on one wall someone had written ‘minx’ and had drawn my clothes with graffiti. I couldn’t believe it when I saw it. The video I filmed there I made by myself, and many of my friends and their acquaintances are in it too. I wanted kids from Greece to be in the video as well.
I have no words to describe it. I loved so many things. It was like a dream and I’m proud to say that I’m from there and it’s my home. I want to help Greece with my clothes because I’m proud to represent it.”
You can check out her collection on Instagram #MINXGREECE #MINXNYC and on the website: www.minxnewyork.com
(Photo: Courtesy of Despina Kotsis)