Let’s take a moment to appreciate the sheer creative talent that is Mono Online Shop. Guys I can’t even begin to express how much I adore this brand! Like, everything about it! Mono Online shop, run by owner Petro Vivier has to be the brand that caught my attention first. The name kind of gives it away – with strong monochrome elements coming though throughout their range, it was a perfect partnership for our Ultimate Collaboration Makeover Project.

Although I’ve never met Petro face to face, through working with her on this campaign, I get a strong sense she’s a salt-of-the-earth kinda girl, with a very humble approach to her business. I’m incredibly inspired by her brand and all that it encompasses on a creative level. Today we talk to this lovely lass about her business and get to know the face behind the successful brand. Mono Online Shop are the sponsors of our gorgeous triangle print duvet and pillow set seen below. I was so impressed with the quality and feel of the linen and will certainly be ordering our linen from her in the future. So many incredible options too!!

1. Is this your full time job? If not, what do you do?

This is my full time job and although I do some blogging, photography, design etc. of my own on the side, my obligations to Mono take up most of my time. No complaints here though – I love my job. J

2. How and when was your brand born?

Our family moved to Somerset West a few years ago (2013 to be exact) and we took on a big project – that is, to buy an old, messy house and renovate it. We decided to go with a Scandinavian look and actually made many of the décor items ourselves (we didn’t know about all of the amazing local designers that we now know of, otherwise we would probably have done differently). I didn’t initially think of starting a business, since I was still studying at the time but somehow it happened and we’ve been making our own products ever since (it is now a family business). I still use our home for taking photos, which I think contributes to our signature look.

3. Was it an overnight success or did you experience many teething problems?

I don’t really believe in such a thing as overnight successes – I see success as a continual thing and not necessarily a point to be reached. I will say that, for me, it has been a learning process. No one knows everything when they start out, so you kind of learn by trial and error. But as long as we are achieving our goals, I consider our business to be a success.

4. What has been your greatest lesson in the industry? Any tips for people starting out?

Greatest lesson is to be patient and not give up. Many months went by before the first order came in and yet today we can’t even imagine that there had been such a time. During that time, we just kept adding products and posting blog posts. My number one piece of advice for anyone starting out is to find your own niche (i.e. do something that no one else is doing) and keep on doing that. Don’t give up and definitely don’t give up early.

5. As a momtrepreneur what are some challenges you face with having to balance it all – family, work and other commitments?

N/A to me currently – I pretty much work on my own time schedule and I’m thankful that I am able to spend so much time doing what I love.

6. What is the dominant theme running through your product range? And what is your signature product?

Our theme is and has always been Scandinavian design and as we go into the future, I definitely want us to take it in an even more minimalist direction. I don’t think we have a signature product. I believe we have more of a signature look – our photos all being taken in our home with our floors etc. We want people to recognise a Mono product when they see the photo.

7. Who/what are your biggest influences? Or your greatest inspirations? 

I wouldn’t say I have any specific influences. I think my inspiration comes from many sources that are difficult to pin point sometimes. I just try to stay creative by reading a lot, spending a bunch of time searching for things on the internet (especially on Pinterest) and I try to work with my hands and experiment with photography (or food or art) whenever I have a chance. I find that if I do these things, inspiration and ideas kind of come automatically and more freely.

8. What has been your biggest achievement thus far as a brand?

I think just getting to this point where this is a full time job and I get to do what I love every day for people who love our products, is an achievement in itself. It may sound like a small thing but whenever we get positive feedback from someone (especially after they have received their order), it means a lot and it makes me proud of the brand we have created.

9. What are your future hopes for your business?

We hope to bring out more products that you’ve never seen before, start shipping internationally and ultimately open a physical store.

Well we certainly wish you all the best with your vision and dreams going forward. Thanks you Petro for sharing your insight into developing your brand and your encouragement to people starting out.  We love your outlook on life and business and are so proud to have partnered with you on this project. ♥

Have you entered our amazing giveaway where you can win a duvet set like this together with other product worth R20 000? The combined prize includes linen,  a rug, wall decals, table and chairs, prints, shelving, light, scatters and so much more!! You can enter the competition HERE! ♥

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Hi I’m Leigh! Did you enjoy reading this post? I really hope so and would love you to stick around a little longer! Please feel free to browse my blog for other articles or to keep up with all the latest news and to be the first to hear about some great competitions, come and find me me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. You can also email me directly at leeloobaggins@hotmail.com or simply subscribe below and never worry about missing out!
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