Inspired by their “own beasts” MODERNBEAST is a brand that we are honoured and proud to retail at Aurora Pets. Their fun twists on design, vintage styles and comfortable well made products are just some of the reasons we love them! We wanted to share with you the journey of MODERNBEAST and the contribution they are giving to animals in need.
Interview conducted with MODERNBEAST Founder/Owner, Lona Williams (Mom to Otis, Rosie, Louie & Beulah), and MODERNBEAST CEO, Hope Reiners (Mom to Ernie).
Aurora Pets: Could you tell us about the designers and creators of MODERNBEAST?
Lona: Our design process usually starts with an idea that comes from something we think would be “so cool” on our own pups (Repurposed Tees) – something we think they need (a better bandana) – or something we would love to see in our own homes (MB Pods). Hope and I design together – usually over wine - going back and forth over every detail. I work from a disadvantage in this process as Hope is an artist with a graphic design background – I can sew. A bit.
Hope: Lona is actually a very talented sewer. Many of our first samples are made by her. During our initial launch of the brand we would spend countless hours sewing our product for all of our holiday orders. We have a similar design aesthetic; we both like clean modern lines and try to incorporate that throughout all our pieces.
Aurora Pets: What would you say is the inspiration behind MODERNBEAST?
Hope: Honestly, inspiration really comes from everywhere. I could be walking through a flea market and see an interesting patterned fabric that would look great as a necktie. Or be out shopping and see a human sweater that would look awesome as a dog sweater. We often pull inspiration from home magazines and work to create pieces that could be seen in those types of magazines…but for pets.
Aurora Pets: How does your charity work help?
Lona: I wanted to create a design centric animal brand that would give back, in some way, to animals in need. The inspiration for our business model came from Newman’s own. In setting up his company, Mr. Newman said his business plan was to give it all away. That seemed simple and impactful – and so, the two ideas came together in MODERNBEAST. We are a for profit company that pays our bills, then gives our profits - 100% - to 501(c)3 animal charities.
It’s thrilling to help support the people and organisations on the front lines, pulling animals from kill shelters, fostering animals until they can be adopted, helping families in underserved communities get the services they need for their much-loved animals, running spay/neuter programs, etc. They are doing the difficult and often heart breaking work every single day. We make stuff. They save lives. We’re honoured to help in some way.
Aurora Pets: What does MODERNBEAST hope to achieve in the future?
Lona: We would like to help end the killing of animals in shelters. We will work our bums off to help achieve that.
Aurora Pets: What materials do you use and why?
Lona: Our material choices vary by product. We may choose for durability, colour, cool and cuddle factors, etc. As you know, there is a certain practical element in animal apparel. I’m not going to dry-clean my Louie’s sweaters.
Hope: We try to keep a high design aesthetic with all of our products, so our fabric choice reflects that as well. In some of our first products we used many upholstery type fabrics because of their durability. For apparel fabrics we always look to find materials that little teeth or claws won’t easily puncture.
Aurora Pets: What was the first MODERNBEAST creation?
Lona: Our Beastbone was our first creation. A sleek and modern design. It set a tone for all to follow.
Aurora Pets: What is your favourite product?
Lona: Too hard for me to answer. I will leave this to my friends who actually use our products…
- Louie (Chihuahua/Terrier, age 2) MB Pod - Nesting is life.
- Otis (Boxer mix, 3 legs, age 11) ALL cat toys - Honestly, anything with catnip.
- Rosie (Basset Mix, age 11) Repurposed Tees - Anything 90’s.
- Beulah (Everything Mix, age 10+) Neckties - As a full figured gal, traditional Neckwear tends to ride up.
Hope: I love our sweatshirt tees – I think my Ernie looks really good in tees. Ernie’s favourite toy will have to be the new modern geometric ball.
Aurora Pets: Which three words would you use to describe MODERNBEAST?
The MODERNBEAST team: Contemporary, Fun, Giving.
We hope that you have enjoyed getting to know one of our designers at Aurora Pets! To see their cool collection please click here.
Love from the Aurora Pets family x