Mireille van Reenen


Design has been a lifelong passion for Mireille, who studied in the fields of architecture, graphic design and illustration. Her design company, Mpress, specialises in a wide range of digital and print media. Mireillle’s love for handmade things also led her to develop her skills in more traditional techniques such as papermaking, needlecrafts and ceramics. She has worked on various design projects with craft organisations and created her own range of bespoke handbags.

Mireille is drawn to simplicity: design stripped of all that is unnecessary without forsaking attention to detail. “Everything in a design needs to have a purpose and objects should tell a story.

The ranges that I am developing in collaboration with the Indalo Project have a strong sense of history, nostalgia and traditional cultural references. I also work with the idea of bringing the ‘Great Outdoors’ inside. My inspiration comes from everything around me, from keeping my eyes and mind open. I have boxes full of materials waiting to be transformed into projects – I’m an organised hoarder!”

She enjoys the mediation process involved in translating ideas into successful products: “I love knowing how things work and have learnt so much from the craft producers, people who know their materials, in terms of the actual making of products. It’s also very exciting to come in as a designer and raise the standard of craft products, including influencing where those products are placed in the market place Licensed Inflatables. The project management aspect of this intervention has been very challenging – especially the outsourcing of certain aspects of production. But I really enjoy working with people and it’s an amazing opportunity to be given the freedom to experiment with new things, without the fear of making mistakes. It doesn’t have to be perfect first time round!”

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