Quick Q+A with Lotus features local South African businesses in the new world for readers!
This week we welcome wonder-woman Stella Pretorius from Yolk, a former office stationery hub now a home for print and design. Yolk is based in George, Western Cape but that doesn’t stop Stella from delivering excellent designs and service to people across the country. The Lotus stickers on our bookstore orders are printed at Yolk! Read more about Stella and Yolk below:
Who is behind Yolk?
Stella: Yolk is a one person show, run by me, Stella Pretorius, out of my garage under the supervision of my Bullmastiff, Marmite and with the tremendous support of my parents who jump in to help whenever things get crazy.
I am a 30-year-old introvert who love working with my hands and have a hard time sitting still. I collect postcards from all over the world – I mostly receive them through The Postcrossing Project but also take part in exchanges that are so much fun!
I live in the magical Garden Route where we have so many amazing places to discover and things to see. The food is pretty great too!
What made you want to start Yolk?
Stella: I wanted to start my own business for years, but never really found something that I was passionate about, until I decided to start a novelty stationery store to help finance my addiction to cute stationery and washi tape! I was still unfulfilled though, so I looked for something that I could tap into my creative side as well as my love of working with my hands and discovered the world of printing and design and everything fell perfectly into place from there.
The name Yolk is very unique and stands out, what made you choose the name?
Stella: I have always been an opposite type of person. If everyone would dress in pink, I’d wear blue, so having a conventional name was never going to happen. When I was toying around with names, the word ‘yolk’ found me and I immediately knew that it was The One. I am also a qualified pastry chef and have separated my fair share of eggs in my day and I like how the name pays homage to the adventures of my early 20’s.
What’s one of the best things you enjoy about Yolk and your industry?
Stella: I get to meet so many wonderful people and see first-hand how incredibly kind and thoughtful they are when getting something made for loved ones; I hear stories of courage and bravery on a regular basis and find myself in tears at least once a week. It really is a privilege to be able to do this!
It taps into my creative and practical sides and at the same time has me out of my comfort zone which is stressful, but exhilarating at the same time.
And lastly, I love the flexibility. I can take afternoons off to take my mom out for coffee, take Marmite out for an adventure or when I’m not feeling well, I can rest for a bit – I have an auto immune disease and whilst 99% of the time I don’t let it stop me, occasionally I need to be responsible and take a nap.
What can people expect from Yolk in the future?
Stella: I have so many things in store for 2021!
We are launching a whole bunch of new items in the next few months and big changes are coming to the online store. We are closing the stationery shop – It has served me well over the last almost two years, but Yolk has grown so much into a totally different direction that I decided to focus more on our custom printing and perhaps stock items that pair better with the items that we personalise.
There are also some collaborations with some amazing artists and other small businesses coming later in the year.
What do you think is important to make an impact in the world or leave a lasting impression?
Stella: Kindness. Even the smallest act of it makes an incredible difference in someone’s life. I’ve been on the receiving end of it so many times and I try to pay it forward on a daily basis. The best part of it is that a small gesture or just a few kind words cost you nothing!
How can people show support for Yolk?
Stella: Follow our shenanigans on social media, like, comment and send us DM’s – I’m always up for a chat.
And then of course, if you have purchased something from us, post a photo on your socials and tag us. We love seeing the things we send out into the world being used and loved!
Where can people connect with you if they’d like to know more about Yolk?
Instagram: Yolk SA
Facebook: Yolk Stationery
Thank you, Stella! Learning that Yolk stems from your time as a chef earlier in your life makes so much sense now!
Meeting wonderful people is definitely a major perk of having a business and I’m glad you come across them on a regular basis too. In our new world, flexibility is key so good luck on your new journey of print & design. We look forward to your new items and collaborations in the year!
Let’s be kind to Stella and support her business this year! Design or print a gift for someone special at Yolk or follow them on social media.