DSO: you are a mother-daughter duo designing bernadette from your studio in antwerp. how did the concept for bernadette come about?
B: After finishing up my internship right after graduating from the Antwerp Fashion Academy, starting BERNADETTE together with my mom felt like a natural step to take. My mom has been working as a buyer for many years, and with the skills and personal taste I have developed over the years, it felt and still feels like it is meant to be.
DSO: What did you both do prior to launching BERNADETTE?
B: My mom has been working as a buyer for Ralph Lauren and others for years. 11 years ago, her passion for knitting turned into a brand named Made by Bernadette. At the time of the launch, I was just starting my fashion degree at the Royal Academy of fine arts in Antwerp.
DSO: Botanicals are obviously a major source of inspiration for the collections. Can you tell us why you are drawn to floral and a certain level of colour?
B: Being surrounded by nature and flowers awakens an intense feeling of joy and calmness within us. I think it’s because we have both grown up in a calm village, surrounded by nature. Also a love for colour is in our DNA - everyone in our family has a specific sense of color. For me, it was also my mum who has used so much color in her interior for example. I must have been influenced greatly by all of the colors that have always surrounded me while growing up.
DSO: BERNADETTE is celebrated for a fusion of contemporary silhouettes and painterly prints. Can you tell us a little more about your artwork and design process?
B: We always start our design process after a small break from our daily routines. We usually spend some time in nature, or somewhere quiet. Then we start looking for inspiration, it can be many things, a mood, a photo, a color, etc. I first start developing the prints according to the mood we have gathered together. Then we start researching different silhouettes. My mum and I both love looking at extreme femininity, couture shapes and vintage references. We sketch out the upcoming collection together, and we like to think of different generations. Both my mum and I want to get dressed wearing BERNADETTE for different occasions, which leads to many different shapes and styles.
DSO: You prefer to categorise BERNADETTE as a lifestyle brand more so than just a fashion label, can you tell us a little more about your vision of BERNADETTE as a lifestyle?
B: It’s hard to label BERNADETTE. We love when everything feels organic and comes naturally. The launch of the ceramic tableware and homeware lines came at a point in time where it felt natural to launch for example. BERNADETTE is a universe filled with optimism and fun, and we love that you can start in the morning by wearing one of our slips or robes, grab yourself a BERNADETTE coffee mug, but also end your night with our party dresses. One thing is for sure, and that is that our customer enjoys life to the fullest.