You know the feeling when the year is almost over and you feel like you haven't done enough? I felt that at the end of 2023. 2023 has been a year of reflection and evolution.

The second half of 2022 and all of 2023 were a time of both personal and business transformation. If you live consciously, as I do, you recognise patterns that largely determine how you live your life and how you do business. It is good to become aware of them. Sometimes I have to hit the brakes to see if I am still on the right track and make adjustments. It was the first time in 7 years that I felt I needed to change course drastically. It's the 7-year itch maybe... And sometimes you brake too late and crash into something. That was what happened to me in the summer of 2022. It wasn't complete burnout, but I was well on my way. Because I was still recovering, I took it pretty easy for the first half of 2023 and turned more inward. I started a six-month business training which I completed in December, well completed.... there are still some modules I'm working on. But it has given me so much focus and energy that I am greatly looking forward to this new year!

Besides, 2023 was also a challenging time globally, and you notice that in the design world as well. While my self-initiated projects and resulting sales did better than ever, commissions lagged a bit behind.

What I learned

Owning a small business is all about change, learning as much as you can and growing your passion. For me, that meant getting back to what I love. It means saying goodbye to the Living Colour project and collaboration after working on it for 7 years with great pleasure and passion. I remain committed to an eco-conscious and artistically nuanced approach to colour. Instead, I will help designers and brands use colour in a sustainable way - more details on this initiative will be shared soon here on this blog and in my newsletter.

What I accomplished

In the spirit of celebrating the year gone by, here are a few things I have achieved with your support:

  • I launched my Chromarama Riso prints, which are very well received and for which I even won the 2023 DNA Paris Design Award. After several previous nominations, I now have my first design award!
  • I also exhibited my work again at special places such as OBJECT Rotterdam, in wine bar Côte du Cool, North Sea Jazz Festival, hair salon Het Haarpand and during the first edition of Design Passage The Hague
  • I designed my first custom rug for a private client
  • I was able to carry out two more very nice commissions that came out of the Living Colour project: dyeing a running kit for Olympic athlete Molly Seidel on behalf of PUMA Running and designing curtains for the new scenography of Arcam Amsterdam.
  • Great press publications, such as a two-page spread with an interview and overview of my work in VT Wonen and a photo series in Eigen Huis en Interieur.
  • I was also included in the books "Kleerkastvasten" and "Goede Gespreksstof", which gives young people insight into the past, present and future of the Dutch textile industry.
  • And I even wrote a chapter on "Smart Colour" for Elsevier Publishers' book "Smart Clothes and Wearable Technology".
  • As you know, I cannot produce much of my work myself because I find too many techniques and materials interesting. But I do always enjoy learning more about certain techniques by doing it myself, for example, I have learnt tufting and how to thread the warp of a 4-shaft loom.
  • And last but not least, I did a residency in mouth-blown and hand-formed glass in Sweden.
Reflecting on this list, I can still look back with pride on an extraordinary year, and the feeling that I didn't do enough is no more. Perhaps the greatest productivity took place behind the scenes, but I planted valuable seeds for the future.

What’s next

  • First up is OBJECT Rotterdam, where I will launch "Soft / Solid" a tantalising exploration of colour and dynamic interplay of textiles and glass.

  • I have a first point of sale outside my own online shop and art gallery Priveekollektie, for my Chromarama tapestries and Riso prints, in the inspiring interior design shop De Klare Lijn in Leiden. 
  • In February I will start the project Blended Fibers in collaboration with Sonia Górecka, where together we explore how to design and visualise woven textiles in a 3D world.
  • In the coming year, I will also pick up blogging again on a more consistent schedule. I can honestly say that it's always worth sharing tips and inspiration with you in the hope that you will benefit from them too.
  • In March I will exhibit at the material fair Material District in Utrecht where I will also give a lecture about my work.
  • Later this year I will launch a new body of work inspired by my travels through my beloved Japan. And I hope that my plans for a residency period in Japan will also come to fruition.
  • And of course, I hope for great commissions and collaborations with progressive brands, interior designers and architects who share my love for colour.

 Here’s to a wonderful and peaceful new year! Thank you so much for reading!


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