As all things colourful and wonderful start blooming around us, we're peeking into the quirky and playful world of Monika Mann, founder of MMann.
Candlelit dinners, wavy mirror selfies and pizza dough are top of mind as we lounge with Monika fireside in her west-end Toronto home.
WHO: Monika Mann, the founder of MMann
Health Hut: Monika! First, thanks so much for connecting with us, we’ve been obsessed with MMann candles for a long while and we’re excited to peek into your quirky world. MMann candles have been such a hit at HH, we love them and our community loves them too. In a perfect universe, every bookshelf and tabletop is styled with MMann. You have such fun and unique shapes and colours! Where are you looking for inspiration?
Monika Mann: Thank you so much for taking the time to chat with me!! I feel so humbled to be able to share more about myself with the Health Hut community. I sometimes still can’t believe that I get to do what I do ~ what an honour to be able to help create something that people want to include in their safe spaces. Honestly, I get a lot of inspo from what would personally make me and my space feel good. I get a lot of inspo from food + drinks that I love to enjoy around my table with my community. I love getting inspired by colours from fresh flowers and plants. I’m finally travelling abroad this summer (after so long) and I’m most excited to get my creative juices flowing!
Health Hut: It’s no secret that here at HH we have a strong appreciation for food and your personal account has us drooling (@mmann). Tell us a little bit about your fav dishes to make (and eat) and this new little pizza project you’re involved in?!
Monika Mann: Hahaah, thank you!! Well, I'm quite lucky as my husband is a chef (he will want me to say cook, but he is a chef to me forever). I’ve always been a bit of a foodie but it grew to a new level of appreciation when we met and I also love cooking!! We’re definitely known as the hub within our community for hosting and feeding! He will cook and I will create the ambiance + vibe, a job I take very seriously. But I'm really good at making fun salads and my salmon game is pretty good! My parents gifted us with a Gozney pizza oven last year with the promise of weekly pizza nights! It was still a weird time with Covid & lots of bars were trying to find alternative ways to get people onto their patios. Our friend had seen a few food popups at a bar on Bloor and had the idea of doing a pizza popup with the Gozney because it is basically like a commercial-style portable pizza oven! Weirddoughs was born!! It was a huge success and soooo much fun…we planned to do one again this year and keep it going ~ hopefully, we can make it happen!
Health Hut: We understand how hectic it is to start/run a small business. What are some of your go-to self-care rituals, wind-down and feel-good things you like to incorporate into your day/week?
Monika Mann: I absolutely love using no overhead lighting at the beginning and end of my day. It’s a huge part of my daily routine. In the morning I wake up and light a few candles around the house and make my coffee, in the summer I almost always have it outside. If I choose to treat myself to Cherry Bomb then I make sure to walk around the block before starting my day. In the evening, when we sit down for dinner we light candles and after that, we usually don’t use any overhead lighting ~ including in our bedroom. We have candles lit even while we get ready for bed. It's the best way to wind down your body and mind for a restful sleep. I also love to make my own weekly flower arrangements using bodega flowers from the top of my street. It’s a very calming and creative activity for me. Having fresh flowers in your home becomes an immediate mood booster, it’s also the easiest way to elevate a space. Add candles? GAME CHANGER! The best duo truly! Also facemasks + baths ~ so many facemasks + baths!!
Health Hut: You’ve made the wavy IKEA mirror a bit of a selfie icon over on your IG. Honestly, any excuse to integrate the wavy line icon! We’re appreciating your pairing of classic wardrobe pieces with playful stripes and yummy colours. When you’re putting together an outfit, do you have any personal styling rules you follow? And any fav spots in the city or online to find quirky pieces?
Monika Mann: Ok, thank you for appreciating my wavy mirror selfies and the kind words! Hahah I’m still trying to find a forever place in my home for it! :) The only rule I have is being absolutely 100% comfortable. I worked in retail/retail management for 14ish years of my life and in the last retail job I had we had to always wear what was available in the store and I almost never felt comfortable. It felt like I lost who I was in my personal styling. I gained weight within the last few years and always stuck to wearing blacks claiming it was classic but it was because I wasn’t comfortable with myself. Although I still struggle with it, I’ve also grown a lot and have accepted my body and acknowledged it for what it does for me and with that it let me get more creative and dive into more of my personality of colours + patterns. My style is always just based on the day/mood! I have been trying to work towards not buying fast fashion, but as a small business I, unfortunately, can’t always afford to invest in slow pieces, so vintage is the best! Most of my prized pieces are vintage (from my travels or other small businesses @thegoods.vintage, @shop.feelings.vintage, @goodhabitsgoodhabits, @hippiemarketlife). I'm also getting good and recycling within my wardrobe, that's been really fun!
Health Hut: Let’s imagine you're going to a tarot psychic reader tonight, what’s the first question you’re going to ask?
Monika Mann: This is such a good question! Both my partner and I are in growth periods and hustling to hit our goals for the future and I’d like to see what some of those goals look like in 5 years, will they be met? There is a lot more I want to accomplish under MMann ~ I would want to see what that looks like…also we would like to have a kid within the next few years, but I have had some health issues. So I would like to see what that might look like, will we have the option to have our own? Will we have the opportunity to adopt? We would love the chance at both! Will our world make it? Too dark? ;)
I hope if we all choose to be a little more open with one another (and kind) on things like our body issues, and fertility/ health issues it will become more of a normal topic of conversation and hopefully continue to become easier to talk about!
Thank you so much for taking the time to chat with me & sharing more about MMann.
SHOP MONIKA'S HH PICKS:
|Magic Stix||Hand Soap and Body Wash||Face and Neck Serum|
|Body Whip||Twisted Tapers||Resurfacing Mask|