For eighteen years, Bertrand Lejoly worked for other designers, from whom he learned the tricks of the trade. Since setting up his own studio in 2021, he has designed for Duravit, Zanotta and Serax, among others.

With 20 to watch, Flanders DC presents twenty emerging talents, who recently took their first steps in the worlds of design or fashion. We believe they will have great success in the future.

Bertrand Lejoly

Bertrand Lejoly © Britt Guns

What makes you different from other designers?

Both personally and professionally, I am a fusion of Germanic and Romance culture. As a child, I grew up in a German- and French-speaking family in Eupen, so both languages and cultures are an essential part of who I am. Later, I studied in Liège and first worked in Germany and later Milan with the Italian architect Matteo Thun. In 2013, I moved to Antwerp to work with Vincent Van Duysen as head of product design. This constant balancing between northern European pragmatism and southern passion and elegance makes my work as a designer unique. I also feel that Italian companies in particular are looking for that northern influence.

Toto voor Zanotta

Toto for Zanotta

Where does the magic of the discipline come from, for you?

How an idea transforms into an industrial product is magical to me. I like to come up with a creative design based on a company’s briefing that fits perfectly with both their DNA and their needs. In 2022, a good designer is also a service provider. At the same time, I have a lot of experience myself, which gives me the courage to fight for my ideas.

What is the biggest challenge in your work?

Everything is a challenge. For example, the design world is undergoing a gigantic transformation towards more sustainability, and this requires designers to think in a new way. In addition, as a self-employed industrial designer, it’s not easy to live off royalties. Fortunately, my first collections, like D-Neo for the global player Duravit, are giving me enough freedom to move forward. At the same time, my past sometimes plays to my disadvantage. People wonder who I am, and what my signature is. But I find motivation in that as well.


D-Neo for Duravit