Tell us a bit about yourself.
I am a bridal hair adornment and accessories designer from the Netherlands. My passion for designing headpieces really started out with my own wedding. Here in the Netherlands, weddings are very traditional, and there are not many accessories in bridal boutiques. I decided that needed to change, and started designing them three years ago as a hobby that has now grown into my business. I am also a very passionate photographer, and I do all photography and modeling for the shop myself. It’s so much fun to bring a piece you designed with so much love to life in a photograph.
Apart from creating things, what do you do?
The last year has been about developing my business and making it stronger. I put a lot of work into designing the pieces and getting them out to brides all over the world. I am very proud of how my business has grown so far, and I am very fortunate to have left my day job a couple months ago.
What’s the most important question a couple should ask their wedding vendor??
The most important thing is to make sure any wedding vendor you work with is truly caring for your best interests. A vendor really has to work to make your special day as beautiful and amazing as they can. Make sure they are willing to do the work, and are willing to think with you and make your ideas come to life.
What’s the most memorable custom item you’ve created for a wedding??
My most memorable custom piece was for a bride who asked me to also design a simple headband for her little baby girl who was just a couple of months old. When I sent her the pictures, she sent me a message telling me that she loved the headband for her daughter so much that she broke down in tears. She was happy with the design, but all she could see was that beautiful little headband for her daughter that would be with her and her fiancé walking down the aisle. I found that to be the most beautiful thing – true love.
What would be the title of your memoir?
My Past, Present and Future. My past has been a enormous influence in actually realizing and starting up my business. After being sick for a couple of years and not being able to do a thing during the day besides sit at home, I wanted to pursue my dreams even more. Today I am living my dream. I worked very hard for it to become a reality, and now I know that anything you set your mind to and work hard to achieve will happen. I hope I can make more of the dreams I have for myself and my family a reality.
Where does your inspiration come from?
I find nature a very powerful source of inspiration. I can sit on the beach or at the dunes and watch the wind go through the grass for hours and hours, and sketch one new piece after another.
What does handmade mean to you?
Handmade means made with passion, craftsmanship, and most importantly, love. Handmade also means attention to detail and making something that stands out.
Who has been most influential in your craft?
My mom. I was already very creative at a young age and this is because of her. My mom did a lot of sewing when my sister and I were young. I would sit beside her for hours and hours watching what she was doing, learning how the sewing machine worked, and checking out all the fun stuff in the sewing box. It made me want to create things myself.
When did you know you were an artist/maker?
Last year, I was still working a part time day job, but I found myself just thinking about designing the entire day. Whenever there was a little free time in the evening or even before going out in the morning, I would browse the web for new materials or fabrics to use. You just know you are a designer when that’s the only thing you want to do all day, and you can’t think of anything else. Designing needs to be your passion and love for it to become your life.
How would you describe your creative process?
My creative process involves a lot of thinking. A lot of the time I am creating a piece and thinking about the next one, and how certain problems can be fixed. I didn’t have creative skills in this area three years ago, and it has been a enormous learning curve. Trying to figure out how the idea in your head can become a realized piece in your shop involves a lot of thinking, researching techniques, and trying over and over and over again when you fail in the beginning stages. Once I figure out how the design works and how to put it together, I write it all down.
If you could peek inside the studio of any artist, designer or craftsman (dead or alive), who would it be?
It has to be Vera Wang. Her bridal designs are absolutely stunning. I’ve admired them for years and years. I admire her unique designs and craftsmanship, and her ability to have amazing creativity year after year.
What handmade possession do you most cherish?
My most cherished possession is my Keishi Petal Pearl necklace made by CreationsbyShelley. I bought the necklace after my wedding, and it reminded me so much of our honeymoon. It symbolized this new beginning for me, and today it still reminds me of how it all started three years ago. It’s something I wear every day, and will keep wearing every day.
How do you get out of your creative ruts?
I don’t like my designs to be forced. When I have one of those days where it just won’t work, I look at my fluffy little Siberian Husky who always wants to go for a walk. And so we do. Most of the time we are not even half way done and I want to go back because I just thought of a solution, or I get an idea in my head and get all excited to get back and design away again. Just clearing my head helps me be more creative.
Where would you like to be in ten years?
I hope I have the opportunity to grow my business and even get some more people involved with making it stronger. I would like to have a even bigger love and passion for what I do, and create on a regular basis. I have to say the most important thing to me is being healthy and still having the business that I love so much. That would make me the happiest person in the world.