Geschreven op 9 August 2014 door Flowmagazine

Sophie Janssens simply cannot sit still. Kinda useful when you are as creatively gifted as she is, because you can make even more wonderful stuff.
260714_Saturday Market_MADAME VOLT
Tell us a little about yourself?
“I’m 33 and I grew up in Antwerpen. I got the name Madame Volt back when I was 16, my friends used to call me 2000 volt because I could never sit still. Together with my boyfriend Dimitri I have bought a little house in Borgerhout earlier this year. That is also where I have my small work shop, where I love making my jewelry and illustrations. I adore lots and lots of light so whenever the sun comes out I immediately drag my table onto the roof terrace. My materials are always ready, so I can get started whenever I feel like it… Savoring and working at the same time. Making the most of life is the thing I like best: going for cups of coffee with friends, riding my bike around the city, getting inspired… ‘Playing’ is a central part of my creative process and that also goes for my everyday life.”

How did you get started with your shop?
“Apart from Madame Volt I also work part time as a kindergarten teacher. I am always trying out new things and creating stuff for that. After my studies I traveled for three years and after that I took a lot of evening classes. First three years of photography, followed by two years of sewing, and a basis course in drawing. I am currently in my second year of ‘applied graphics’. I seriously cannot sit still. It was all just a hobby until I set myself a deadline by getting a stall at a creative market. The shop has existed ever since.”

What kind of development have you seen in your work?
“I have made pretty much everything. A while ago I enjoyed upcycling charity shop finds, most of my products had a bit of a retro vibe. Currently I am influenced more by the graphic and geometrical look. But colors and playfulness will always be key to my designs.”

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Geschreven op 6 August 2014 door Flowmagazine

Jet van der Graaf (in her daily life she’s a designer at a magazine) has a dream: traveling the world in an old camper with her boyfriend and her two sons. The nineties camper van has been purchased and work continues day and night to pimp the in- and the outside. Over the next few weeks Jet will share her tips, doubts, decisions and moments of bliss with us. You can also follow her on her blog

Honey… it looks like Dynasty in here!

Yep, that’s the first thing that came to mind when I saw our internal spa… (yes, we do have a shower and a toilet on board!). It’s this kind of marbled pattern which reminds me of the glamorous lifestyle of Alexis Carrington Colby Dexter, including ‘dressing room’ lamp. It made me want to dig out some huge shoulder pads to add to my travel outfits…


Luckily we see our tiny bathroom as a fun challenge, we can make it much nicer. Let’s get out the adhesive foil! We were aiming for some nice Piet Hein Eek-esk walls (Piet Hein Eek is a Dutch designer famous for his scrap wood furniture). We felt a more beachy, and less bitchy, vibe would suit our happy trails better.

Sticking the stuff on was supposed to be easy as pie. Get a bucket of soapy water and a squeegee and Bob’s your uncle, right? Well, as I’ve mentioned before… I have some patience issues… When I tried it everything just stuck to everything higgledy-piggledy. Luckily my guardian angel Michiel came to my rescue. In less than an hour he managed to get our little bathroom plastered tip-top. Turned out that putting up the towel hooks was more my cup of tea, and after adding a nice crisp blue shower curtain Dynasty was a thing of the past!


While we’re on a roll, we really get going, yes you can… The Orla Kiely wall paper has arrived and the last layer of white lacquer has been applied. Suddenly everything is moving really quickly and within a week the end result is starting to shine through…. wow… it’s going to be so cool!


At the 11th hour we remember that we have some blackboard paint left over from a wall in our living room and it would be perfect for the inside of the camper’s door.


Now that our interior is coming together bit by bit, it’s time to start thinking of the outside, as so far it’s very ‘unsexy’! I have stocked up on bottles of sticker remover and my hair dryer is at the ready, because the twenty year old original Hymer stickers are still on it. The doors of the cabin and the back of the camper will get their very own No-Mad Family-logo and the first designs are popping up on my computer screen… decisions, decisions… Are we going to use wrapping foil or sand down and paint? But first let’s go on our trial & error weekend. The sun is shining, it’s about time to sip wine  & smell the campfire!

A summery salute,




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Geschreven op 2 August 2014 door Flowmagazine

Ellen De Ly’s shop and web shop are her personal play ground, a marvelous place where the past isn’t quite past at all.

170714_Saturday_Market_ PASSI PASSÉ Who is the woman behind Passi Passé?
“I have two kids, two dogs, four cats and a horse and I’m married to Niko, a soccer journalist. I love music, fine arts, cooking, reading and collecting things. And I love my big garden. My ‘proper’ job is as a translator and a copywriter, but two years ago I took the plunge and started working full time in the shop and the web shop. I’ve been obsessed with all things old ever since I was a little girl: old movies, old music, old furniture. Someone I knew had to sell her flower shop in the village five years ago… At first I also sold plants next to gifts and vintage knickknacks, but it soon became obvious that I don’t have much of a green thumb..”

What kind of shop is Passi Passé?
“Passi Passé derives from the French: le passé n’est pas si passé que ça. Which means something like: the past isn’t quite past. It’s my personal playground: I get to look for and buy as many vintage items as I want. And the occasional curiosity as well, I do pick some of those up occasionally :-).”

Did you start your web shop right away as well?
“I started a web shop pretty quickly so I could attract clients from outside the village. At the same time I got into the whole web shop fairs and market scene. That really helped getting the shop noticed quickly. I also got to know the owners of other web shops. These days my shop is a concept store where other specialized web shops and creatives can temporarily hire space. They get a place where people can actually see their stuff and I get to offer my clients a lot of new things more often. I’ve been profiting from the product knowledge and the specialization of my tenants. I’ve been doing it like this for the past two years and it really works for me. Truly a win-win situation.”

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Geschreven op 30 July 2014 door Flowmagazine

Jet van der Graaf (in her daily life she’s a designer at a magazine) has a dream: traveling the world in an old camper with her boyfriend and her two sons. The nineties camper van has been purchased and work continues day and night to pimp the in- and the outside. Over the next few weeks Jet will share her tips, doubts, decisions and moments of bliss with us. You can also follow her on her blog

And then you find yourself staring down a big, brown hole…

…Which is the interior of the camper van you’ve just bought. And if, like me, you haven’t been blessed with pots and pots of patience, you can easily loose heart at moments such as these. How can we ever turn this into something? Where do we even start?

Luckily Michiel simply got started: the best way to tackle ‘big obstacle’-fears. Ripping out the stuff that needs to go, getting all the grease off and putting a first coat of paint on everything that needs painting… Which is pretty much everything! So if you walk into the camper halfway through all of these demolitions it can kinda freak you out, aaaaaaaaaargh!

We got some advice from a real painting pro, which is why we opted for a high quality base coat and water based two-component lacquer. A lacquer so strong it can actually handle my family of men on these few square meters ;-)


We’re turning the alcove, the double sleeping area above the cabin, into the boys’ room.  And to give the camper van that homey feeling we’re painting it the same light blue color as the kids’ room in our apartment. It makes it feel bigger and it’s a nice fresh color for this relatively small space. I’ve painted grass and stuck on some stickers depicting woodland creatures all around, just above the mattress… A little of the outside inside. Our eldest son Roemer was very taken with his new diggs and is proudly showing off his new bed to his friends!

3.We’re also sowing herbs in two ‘hanging balcony bins’, the kind we can easily hang out of our camper’s kitchen window (only when we’re stationary, obviously ;-). Roemer especially enjoys sowing and growing stuff and it’s a great, playful, way to increase his involvement in this project. In a while he’ll be able to make his own pesto on the road. Personally I put a lot of stock in healthy eating hea;thy and organic food, and getting our own mobile herb garden makes it easier for me to keep track of that…

4.And I imagine that once we’re on the road, and the kids are tucked away asleep in their forest beds, Michiel and I will just linger outside under a balmy, starry sky, nice and romantic at our picnic table! So I needed to tackle that as well ;-)

Luckily there are scores of cute types of oilcloth to cover the table and the seats. Very easy to do with a staple gun and, oh lucky me, very fast results. Candle (or moon) light, an olive or two, glass of cava… I am completely over the moon with my camper van plan again.

Summery greetings,

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Geschreven op 28 July 2014 door Flowmagazine

Every week we feature a fun getaway on our blog. Selected and approved by Flow. Hotel, campsite, B&B or some other great place to spend a night away, or a weekend, or a bit longer. Always special, always in the Netherlands or Belgium (or slightly further afield now and again).

Huis Aan de Lot (‘House on the Lot’) in La Gazailles (France)

Lekkerweg_beeld_66_HuisAandeLot_FrankrijkWhat’s so great about this place?
The relaxed atmosphere at the little estate will put you in a holiday mood from the moment you set foot on the property. And that’s exactly what Dutch owners Jan and Anja Verheijen intended. You can have a nice, restful sleep in the  Chambre d’Hôtes, the Little House on the Lot or in one of the Safari Lodge tents. The rooms in the house have been decorated in a attractively quiet and stylish way. Each room has its own style and colors. The little house is also super cute, with its own lovely terrace. But you can also opt to sit with the other guests at the pool as well.

What’s for breakfast?
Early in the morning, the ‘boulanger’ comes down the drive with crunchy fresh baguettes, croissants and other goodies. Inside the coffee’s on the boil and on the breakfast terrace there’s a Dutch newspaper, ready for your perusal. Just let the kitchen know how you like your eggs in the morning and in the mean time you can enjoy an extensive breakfast buffet, which changes every day. Fresh fruit, yoghurt and cheese from the local cheesemonger, wonderfully French!

Our tip
Take a boat ride along the river Lot or visit some of the beautiful castles. Or spend a fun day in Bordeaux.

Good food
‘Do as the French do’ and treat yourself to a leasurely lunch in the village restaurant ‘Le Commerce’ in Castelmoron sur Lot.

Nice to know
Guest rooms start from € 65,- per night for 2 people, excluding breakfast. There are several options for the Table d’Hôtes. You can rent the little house for € 875,- per week (suitable for 4 ). Safari tents start at € 670,- per week (suitable for 4).

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Geschreven op 26 July 2014 door Flowmagazine

Simply everything they like, that’s what Janneke van der Heijden and Daan Vergouw, make and sell, hence the name.

120714_SaturdayMarket_ALL THINGS WE LIKEJanneke and Daan, who are the women behind this shop?
Janneke: “We went to art school together, started our own designer label in 2012 and we’ve been friends for over 10 years.  I live in Utrecht with my son Finn (1) and boyfriends Laurens – another designer and illustrator – and Miep the cat.

Laurens also designs for All Things We Like. For instance, he made the great illustrations of pirates and monsters on our children’s clothes line and the animals of the Bamboo Zoo. Daan lives really close with boyfriend Martijn. Apart from working for our shop she also works for another company  in marketing and PR. Laurens and I also work on graphic and web design assignments as “Studio Katapult” (‘Studio Slingshot’).”

Why do you use a 3D printer?
We really enjoy experimenting with the latest techniques, colors and materials. So it’s always very exciting to see whether it will work! We like to skirt the edge of what is possible. A lot of our designs need to be adapted because they’re too fine or the material isn’t strong enough.

That’s why some of our designs take some time, but we do end up with the best results. This week our new collection of 3D necklaces will be ready, with summery pineapples and strawberries and little thunder clouds.”

What are your plans for the future of your label?
“We keep getting increasingly busy, we are in quite a few shops already and we’re featured in magazines on a regular basis. That offers us the opportunity to expand and design new collections. Other than that, Daan is experimenting with ceramics and Laurens and I with screen printing. Follow us on Facebook, so you can witness our latest experiments and designs!”


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Geschreven op 23 July 2014 door Flowmagazine

Jet van der Graaf (in her daily life she’s a designer at a magazine) has a dream: traveling the world in an old camper with her boyfriend and her two sons. The nineties camper van has been purchased and work continues day and night to pimp the in- and the outside. Over the next few weeks Jet will share her tips, doubts, decisions and moments of bliss with us. You can also follow her on her blog

Let’s go wild and explore the world!

Preferably for at least a couple of months -  that is the dream we are working towards. ‘We’ are me, Jet van der Graaf, boyfriend Michiel and our sons Roemer and Rein. The four of us live happily in an uber cozy little apartment in Den Bosch.

In my every day life I love working as a designer and Michiel is a passionate (extremely talented!) web programmer… But as soon as the days start to get longer than the nights, we are hit with an  extreme case of ‘wanderlust’… We want to go out and explore…. freedom and good cheer underneath the stars! And that’s how we started the No-MadFamily lifestyle&travelblog. Because we’re definitely not going for your bog standard box on wheels or a camping rag, no way, we are all about a customized traveling palace! Which is why we opted to buy a real camper van from the early nineties… as it turns out that wasn’t exactly the heyday of camper design… so we’ve got ourselves a little ‘project’ ;-)


Everything simply had to go: the brown ‘wooden’ interior with the gray – you can’t see the stains, yikes – mottled pillows, the gray curtains, the ‘bathroom’ with ‘marbled Dynasty-look’ -walls, and the vinyl floor. We’d also like to do ‘something’ to the outside; a little more cheer and fun on the road never hurt anyone after all. Before we’ll embark on our long trip – we are planning to go in about another four years so our kids will be old enough to collect some fond memories – we’ll first be taking it out for lots of short trips, enjoying summer holidays and visiting fun festivals.

So that’s our first big deadline right away, the camper van really needs to be ready before July! So making mood boards, late night web shop adventures, trailing the flea markets and fabric research are pretty much an every day occurrence here. And seriously, it’s all just so much fun!


This month you can get your fill of our glamping progress in my guest blogs… and trust me, even though it may look incredibly ‘un-glamping’ at the moment, it’ll all work out in the end, it’s going to be awesomeness personified!


Summery greetings,





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Geschreven op 19 July 2014 door Flowmagazine

Marieke Jacobs easily stretches a piece of leather on a last – she prefers it to sewing a dress from fabric. Leather is her chosen material for making al her gorgeous accessories.


Can you tell us a little about yourself?
“I am mother to Maan, a cheery two-and-half-year-old, and I’m married to Albert, a teacher of art history and a sculptor. We live together in the city of Groningen. We have our work shop in a converted garage at the back of our garden. We share a love of art, flea markets and good food, Our house is a hodgepodge of second hand finds and a little bit of new stuff. I love dresses, cooking and working with my hands.”

How did you start working with leather?
“I first got a degree in architectural design at the School of the Arts in Utrecht. Then I went to the Academy of Architecture, but I dropped out because I wanted to work ‘smaller’ and stay closer to who I am. I fell in love with leather’s versatility and character when I took a three year course in artisanal shoemaking. What an absolute joy that was! Even now I am fantasizing about a new course or training. In a perfect world I would be studying non-stop.”

And why did you open an Etsy shop?
“I was already making little wallets and bags from leather for personal use, but people near me also started to get interested. A friend told me about Etsy some four years ago and it seemed a great place to explore to see whether it’d be a good fit for me. It’s a wonderful platform. You don’t need to make any large investments and you still have worldwide reach. I like it even better the more time I spend there.”

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