Setting the right mood is at the heart of everything we do. As mood is right in their name, we thought it would be a perfect match for us to collaborate with PIET Moodshop for the perfect playlist that fits the mood. We couldn’t be happier that Christophe, founder of PIET Moodshop, thinks so too!
To celebrate our collaboration, we spoke with Christophe about music, mood and the art of curation. Just as PIET Moodshop loves to be inspired by people who have a story to share, we do too!
The mood of both stores are very unique and different. What inspires this?
The flagship store in Sint-Pietersnieuwstraat sits in a century-old building and used to be a grocery store back in the day. The architecture of the building has a certain warmth and coziness to it, so it’s only fitting for the interior of the store to follow suit. We make sure to keep the display in store very full to make it very inviting for customers to look around and browse. My goal with the shop is to make our customers feel like they’re coming home. That’s why we also play warmer and sometimes more nostalgic music in store. I want everyone to feel the same joy when coming to the store, no matter if it’s a student in his 20s or a lady in her 70s.
The second store in Hippoliet Lippensplein is in contrast very urban. The building is more sleek and industrial, so the store also has a more modern and clean vibe. This reflects in the collection too. In the beginning, it was mostly focused on unique office gadgets and quirky stationery, but over time, the collection grew to also include lifestyle and urban necessities.
How important is mood for you in curating the store?
When I started out 8 years ago, concept stores were very trendy. But I didn’t want to open just another concept store. I wanted something unique and different. That’s when mood came to mind and I thought about calling it a moodshop.
To me, a moodshop is a place where people come to feel good and be happy. That’s very important for me. I want people to be happy when they enter and leave the store, even if they don’t buy something. Mood plays a very big role in that. Mood, to me, is about the people, the interior and the music you play in store.
Does mood also influence the curation of your products?
The products in store are a reflection of my personal interests. I try to live healthy, I do yoga and I enjoy a lot of different hobbies. This is my mood and the lifestyle I’m living, so this also reflects the products I buy for the shop.
I remember a few years back that the bohemian style became a very big trend. Brands were pushing their bohemian collections to us, but I don’t live a bohemian lifestyle and it’s not my mood. Therefore, I don’t follow the collection.
I don’t like trends. I like doing my own thing and just buy the things I like.
And how about the music?
The right architecture, the right people, the right music need to be in the right balance to create the right mood. I want people to feel good, they want to feel good, and music is one part of the equation.
You’re soon taking PIET Moodshop to Antwerp. What will be the mood of the store in Antwerp?
When you enter the store in Antwerp, you will see the remnants of the old bank. It will be a totally different atmosphere and mood from the shops here in Ghent. It’s a huge building and we’ll have more space, so the collection will feature more furniture and bigger items. Selling furniture will be the next step in the PIET Moodshop story and I’m very much looking forward to how the store is going to evolve with it.
As you see, every shop is different because I don’t like copy pasting. There’s no fun in that. It will be the same story if we one day go to another city. We will adapt the collection, the interior design and the music, so the mood will once again be different. And we will always grow with our clients.
Now let’s talk about you. What mood are you in and what music do you listen to?
When it comes to music, I listen to almost everything. Jazz, techno, synth pop, whatever catches my ear. But the first thing I do at closing time is turn off the music. If you’re in a busy environment with people, music, noise and movement all day, you also crave for silence. That’s very important for me too. Sometimes I just want to enjoy the silence and listen to no music. Though, a day without music is not possible.
And how do you discover new music?
I mostly discover music through friends or when I’m out in restaurants or bars. When I hear music I like, I go Shazam. Mostly, it’s like love at first sound. I know it right away.
It’s probably the same impulse when it comes to objects?
Absolutely. It’s the same with objects. I walk around a 10,000 m² fair with different brands and objects and most often than not, it’s also love at first sight.
And what’s your favorite sound?
I love the piano. I often go to the opera in Ghent. Not for the opera per se, but for the modern dance performances. I can just sit for hours, watch a dance and dream away. Enjoying dance in combination with the music is my favorite way to de-stress.
Can you share with us how your curation has evolved over the years?
Life changes. The world is changing. Everything develops with it. Naturally it evolves. The shop exists for 8 years now and the range has evolved over the years. That’s because I also listen to my clients. It’s very important to know what they want and cater to that. But, there’s a but. I always keep true to what I like. Finding the right balance is important.
What for you makes Piet a very unique store compared to others?
People in the business say I have a good eye and I know what to choose. For me, I just know what I like and I choose what I like. It comes very naturally. Needless to say, curation is very important, so we’re happy that we will also have curated music for the shop that perfectly fits with the mood of the shop.
To end, where do you see PIET Moodshop in a couple of years?
I would like to have more stores in the coming years. My ambition is not to build a chain, but to have 5 or 6 stores throughout Belgium. The thing is that we don’t have a big player here in Belgium for the design market. I’d like to work towards being a big player and would be excited to take on that challenge, all while keeping true to the same spirit.