My name is Pierre-Yves Monnerville but in the UK, most people call me Pierre.
I’m launching a knitwear label now as I’m making one of my childhood dreams come true. I was brought up by a seamstress so the apple didn’t fall very far from the tree. To be honest, this is my second attempt. The first one literally flopped back in 2015. However, it proved me that although I lost all my savings (and even had to borrow money from friends), life went on and I didn’t end up on the street.
That flop was the result of very silly mistakes I made along the way. I was so convinced the market was desperate for my designs that I simply skipped a serious market research. I thought applying the theory ‘build it and customers will show up’ would be enough. Well, some people did turn up - three! That’s right, three. And they only bought one item each out of the 1500 I’d ordered and paid for upfront. A few other important things went pear shaped. A manufacturer advised me to focus on scarves and beanie hats as they were cheaper to produce so that’s what I did. Unfortunately, the Italian Merino wool mill I’d chosen went on strike so my stock was only delivered AFTER Christmas. Just on time for Boxing Day Sales when prices are slashed! The final blow was dealt by Mother Nature. Winter 2015/16 was the warmest on records. Nobody needed scarves or beanies anyway!
I can smile about it now but I’m sure you can imagine how depressed and panicked I was at the time. The shame made me feel a near constant knot in my stomach and I saw myself as a complete failure for a long time. But here I am again, back for more!
So what to expect from Monnerville? Understated, sustainable, premium, technological knitwear for men. I’ll stick to menswear at first because I want to wear some of my designs. This time, I’ve spent months conducting some thorough market research. It’s still no assurance that people will actually be interested in the garments but I promised myself I’d refrain from ordering any stock upfront!
I’ll post regular development updates so please feel free to follow, comment or ask anything in the meantime.
Thanks for reading. Wish me luck 😜