Together with her mother Bernadette de Geyter, designer Charlotte de Geyter is conquering the world with their luxury label Bernadette. The biggest (e-)boutiques – from Net-A-Porter to Harrods – jump for their chic evening wear with a romantic touch. It’s a huge achievement for an Antwerp brand that has only existed for three years and now also makes tableware.
What makes you different from other designers?
I’m very strong when it comes to colour and my entire graphic world, with floral prints that I draw myself. I also enjoy designing volumes. I always see it as a challenge to create new volumes and new forms. We have also recently made more unique hand-embroidered pieces. This is based on my wish to convert our prints that are normally digitally printed into something three-dimensional with more texture.
Where does the magic of the discipline come from, for you?
From an early age, I could be very obsessive and passionate about something, and work on it full time. Back then, they were sticker books; now, with Bernadette, it’s something very public. I find it magical that I still have an obsession with what I do and that I want to think about and be busy with it every minute of the day. Like my mum, I am a true optimist. We dare to dream and I think that is the secret to our success. If you dream the impossible, there’s a possibility that one day it just might happen. We never say in advance that something could go wrong.
What is the biggest challenge in your work?
I always wanted to be a designer, but now I’ve also become a businesswoman. There’s so much involved in having your own brand. You have to be a chameleon. The bigger the company, the more challenges will come your way. For me, creativity has almost become relaxation. When I come home in the evening, I try to switch off the business part of myself and really think creatively. And every season there is surely a month in which I ask my team not to disturb me and I completely withdraw into my creative cocoon.