Mako Design is a mother/daughter business based in Ōtautahi/Christchurch.
Tara Munro Voice is a graphic designer, and mum Ann has a lot of knowledge around Māori design, te reo and kaupapa Māori.
Together they work on the designs, creating jewellery and art that combines both of their mātauranga Māori.
What is it like working together as mother and daughter?
It is really awesome! We have definitely grown closer and it’s a really cool thing to be able to do as mother and daughter. Sometimes it can be challenging working so closely together. We are both so passionate about the business and we have different ideas, and ways of working so we do have disagreements from time to time, and while that is hard I also think that because we are very close we can move past disagreements very easily. We are so used to being completely open with each other, any little things we can work through pretty easily because we’re family.
Do you always agree on the direction of your work? Or are there disagreements?
Yes, lots of disagreements! But that is all part of it. We challenge each other and it brings out the best in our work I think.
How did you come to work together – were you both interested in similar things?
Mum actually started with the idea of the business first and I was just helping her with the designs in the beginning. Then I found I had a real passion for it, I loved what I was learning and working together was great so the business kind of grew into what it is today.
What’s the best thing about working together?
Being creative and spending time together. It’s just really fun!
Do you complement each other’s work? Do you have strengths in areas that your daughter doesn’t and vice versa?
Yes definitely. Mum is very practical, methodical and thorough. I am creative and have skills in the areas of graphic design and social media. We both love to create things and work on the conceptual elements together, but we also both have different skills that a business needs to run successfully.
Is it ever difficult to separate work from the family dynamic? Do you talk work across the dinner table?
Yeah it can be hard not to mix and to be honest we haven’t quite mastered that just yet! We are getting better though! We make plans do things together as a family, like go on outings with the kids, to the beach or just out shopping. We make sure that there are days where it’s a no-business day.
What next for you two?
We’d love to be in some more retail spaces in Ōtautahi Christchurch, and eventually having our own space would be incredible! That is probably one of our big goals. But at the moment we are just enjoying the journey of our business and seeing what the future has in store!