Green Mat Designs is the inspiration of young South African entrepreneur, Yolanda Ndhlovu, who is passionate about going ‘green’ and thinking more about taking an environmentally friendly approach to design. Her jewellery, fashion and interior decor pieces reflect her love of recycling, particularly for vintage beads and clothing.
LoA spoke with the founder of Green Mat Designs, Yolanda Ndhlovu, to find out more about her startup business and her love of recycling to create new fashion and jewellery designs.
What does your company do?
At Green Mat Designs, we recycle beads and create beautiful new pieces of jewellery. We also sell scented candles and vintage clothing.
"I wanted the fashion industry to be green, not only through using environmentally friendly materials, but also through recycling - that approach reflects in the ethos behind Green Mat Designs."
What inspired you to start your company?
I love fashion and I am a girly girl at heart. I wanted the fashion industry to be green, not only through using environmentally friendly materials, but also through recycling - that approach reflects in the ethos behind Green Mat Designs. Also, what woman does not love a beautiful scent in her home? My solution was to also sell scented candles, and I wanted to bring all that under one business concept.
Why should anyone use your service or product?
All our jewellery is handcrafted, and we promote each piece as being highly individual, not generic. In the same way, all the clothes we sell are unique, vintage and not mass produced. On the home decor front, we also offer the most reasonably priced scented candles.
"I have absolutely no entrepreneurial background. I have been learning "in the field" and through many free online entrepreneurial courses."
Tell us a little about your team
Green Mat Designs is uniquely a father and daughter team. Daddy is the administrator and daughter does the designing and buying.
Share a little about your entrepreneurial journey. And, do you come from an entrepreneurial background?
I have absolutely no entrepreneurial background. I have been learning "in the field" and through many free online entrepreneurial courses.
What are your future plans and aspirations for your company?
In the future, I would also like to start my own handbag brand. In addition, I would like to support local communities by providing employment and empowerment programmes. At Green Mat Designs, we endorse the whole ethos of social entrepreneurship.
#EntrepreneurAdvice "Always have a vision for your business. Without a vision, you won't succeed."
- Yolanda Ndhlovu, founder @greenmatdesigns
What gives you the most satisfaction being an entrepreneur?
That no matter how hard it may get, I keep the passion going. Seeing things through to their conclusion makes me feel great. I don't like doing things by halves.
What's the biggest piece of advice you can give to other women looking to start-up?
Prepare yourself for sleepless nights. Don't compare yourself with other entrepreneurs. Always have a vision for your business. Without a vision, you won't succeed.
Contact or follow Green Mat Designs
Why LoA loves it….
At Lionesses of Africa, we love to hear of young new startups that are driven by passion, particularly when this is combined with a more eco-friendly approach to entrepreneurship. Yolanda is embarking on her entrepreneurial journey by harnessing her love of design, recycling and vintage clothing and accessories, and creating wonderful new pieces that breathe new life into old. --- Melanie Hawken, founder and editor-in-chief of Lionesses of Africa