Yvette Mommsen’s love of all things beautiful, creative and handmade led to her creating ArtEsense. We chat with her to find out more.
Q: How did your business start?
A: I started an online shop for a curated range of handmade gifts. Just over a year ago, I came across beautiful macrame plant hangers in New Zealand and something about them resonated with me. I taught myself the macrame technique, and have since created plant hangers, wall hangings and dreamcatchers. I also hire out my large macrame backdrops, plant hangers and dreamcatchers for weddings and special events.
Q: Why did you choose this area to set up shop?
A: Since I started out making all my products myself, it was not necessary to set up shop anywhere else but home, which is in the Durban North area.
Q: How did you find your premises?
A: My daughters go to a school in the area, so we moved closer from the North Coast a few years ago, and this is where I still operate from.
Q: Why are the premises ideally suited to your business?
A: Although I now employ one staff member, we don’t need too much space unless we are busy preparing for a show. As a mom, it is also more practical, cost-effective and saves me on travel time.
Q: Who are your neighbours?
A: My direct neighbours are residents. However, I am not the only business working from home. There is a busy landscape company and beauty salon close by.
Q: How many people go through your store each day?
A: Besides the production of my macrame decor products at home and a few selected local stockists, my entire business is run online.
Q: Do you have any expansion plans?
A: Yes, I may rent premises temporarily this year due to a large short-term project. I recently took part in the beautiful Kamers show in Pretoria at the end of last year, and hope to do a few more.
Q: Do you operate online as well?
A: Although my products are stocked and sold at a few local Durban shops and the I Heart Market, I mostly operate online. I sell via a few online shopping platforms, including my own online shop.
Q: What’s your most popular item?
A: My macrame plant hangers, which are made in various styles from either 100% cotton cord or T-shirt yarn, which allows for gorgeous colours. However, custom orders are my favourite!
Words: Megan Deane