Every month we introduce you to a creative and inspiring woman from our kiiv community.
This month we would like you to meet our ever enthusiastic and passionate founder & designer, Klaartje Busselot. Read all about her passion for colors, prints and the lessons she’s learned so far.
Could you tell us about yourself and why you started kiiv?
I’m a 35 years old illustrator and designer living in Belgium. 4 years ago, I was looking for a new way to express myself. I have a passion for fashion & design, and wanted to combine those two without having to deal with the fast pace you so often see in the fashion industry. So, I focused on the what I do best: creating prints and combining colors.
Where do you get your energy and inspiration?
The past year I realised how much I love to explore the world. At home I’m continuously forcing myself to come up with new ideas. While travelling I’m 100% living in the moment, and it is at those times that inspiration strikes.
I also miss the energy and vibes from places like Milan. That’s one of those cities that can really make my heart sing.
What’s the origin of your love for color and bold prints?
As a redhead I always felt different. I knew that I stood out. Later in life I realized that this is who I truly am and wanted to be: a bold and colorful person.
My love for color started with a very colorful chequered coat when I was about 8 years old. I saw that coat on vacation in France and it was love at first sight. My mom bought me the coat a few weeks later. And despite looking like a clown half of the time, I adored it.
Any advice to your younger self?
Believe in yourself! For a long period of time I was convinced that design was nothing for me. I funked out of art school and thought that if there are so many people more talented than me, why even bother trying. That was until someone made me realize that I had a unique and very colorful style. And if I would stay true to myself, people would fall in love with my designs.
What is your favorite object in your interior and why?
It’s a Lucky Cat, a really small souvenir from one of our trips to Japan. No matter how hard you push it, it might wobble, but always gets back up. It’s a reminder that everything will be OK in the end. A philosophy in which I truly believe. Life has its ups-and-downs, but I will always land on my feet.
What does creativity mean to you?
Creating or designing is a process. It’s not a straight line from point A to B. You need to acknowledge that. Inspiration is not something will hit you out of the blue, boredly sitting at your desk. Creativity for me is transforming knowledge into new creations. The more designs, pictures, books, art pieces,… you see, the more material you can connect and create your own design language.
What can lift you up when you’re having a bad day?
Having a glass of red wine with my husband. We are so different that he really can put things in another perspective. And if that doesn’t work, he’ll make a joke that makes me forget why I was even having a bad day in the first place.
What is your favorite city?
I really love Milan. It’s the perfect mix of culture, design and amazing food.
Any plans for the future?
I’m looking forward to becoming a mom in a couple of weeks. And later this fall we will launch a new collection of cushions and bedding. I guess this summer will be one big adventure…