At the beginning of this month I was lucky enough to sit down for a cup of coffee with graphic designer, Tharien Strydom, mastermind behind creative design company, Swagger Collective.
Tharien was to be my 'Vendor Spotlight Subject' for the month of February. While chatting away to get to know Tharien a little better and find some inspiration from her for our readers thinking about starting their own businesses, we decided that it would be great to team up for the month of February and spread some love by giving away something pretty to one lucky reader. **Competition details at the end of this post.
I was amazed by this lady's creativity and the uniqueness of their products. Their business consists of four departments: Object, Babble, Construct and Events, with their specialty being custom decor pieces.
I grew up in Vereeniging and moved to Pretoria when I started studying at Design School South Africa in 2006.
I finished my interior design degree in 2008.
I loved making things for myself and friends since I can remember.
Things that make me happy: my husband, our home, walks with our dogs, art galleries and pizza.
When did you start your business?
Swagger was born in 2009. First as a part time business and I went all out in 2011 when I decided to quit my day job and focus all my time and energy on creating products that I love.
I started Swagger as a creative outlet on the side. I started making accessories that I wanted to wear but couldn’t buy anywhere.
My business evolved from accessories into home décor, as well as doing custom products to match client’s needs. Planning and organizing is one of my best assets, so when I combine these with creative elements I love the end result. I started doing events for friends and family, and realized that it really makes me happy, so I added it to my services.
What products and/or services do you supply?
Events coordinating, designing & styling. Making each event unique.
Interior Design/Decorating & Space planning.
Existing range and custom/personalized items.
Where is your business based?
Pretoria, but we do post products all over South Africa, and events anywhere in Gauteng can be managed.
Advice for others wanting to start their own business?
Don’t be scared to take chances. If you believe in your idea, then everything else will fall into place. Hard work pays off, but it takes time. You are only as good as your last products so always make sure that you deliver your best product/service. “If you do what you love, you'll never work a day in your life.”
Biggest highlight since starting your business?
When your products are featured in magazines and when events that you were part off are featured on blogs that you admire.
Also the moment a plan comes together and the end result is exactly what you imagined.
Any low's and biggest lesson learned so far?
Saying yes to a job that was too big for my company at the time. Disappointing the client and learning a very expensive lesson.
How can people get in contact with you?
You can contact me directly on email: email@example.com
or on my cell phone 082 876 9357
My website has a contact page: www.swaggercollective.co.za
Facebook message me via my page: Swagger Collective
Most recent function you attended, theme, color scheme and venue. What was your favorite detail?
A carnival themed year end function. Red, black & gold.
Kleinkaap Venue, Centurion.
Favourite detail: Gold animals stacked onto each other as part of the centre pieces.
Best Cake & Coffee spot anywhere in South Africa.
Best carrot cake: Tribeca Standard, Lynnwood Bridge, Pretoria.
Best coffee: Carlton Café Delicious in Menlo Park, Pretoria.
What was the last present that you bought and for whom?
I bought an indoor plant, which I paired with one of my steel planters for a friend’s new home.
Object features products and décor for any space or event.
Babble is the kid’s product range that is still in its starting phase, but we are working on it.
Construct covers all interior consulting projects as well as event planning, styling and decorating.
Competition Closed. AND OUR WINNER IS:
DESIREE DUNN - Congratulations Desiree. You have won set number 1. - 4 x place mats and 4 x serviette rings.
Please send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, contact number and delivery address.