Carole, can you give us a short introduction to yourself and your family?
“In short, I’m a Dutch Designer and a colourist. For the past two decades I’ve worked as half of the Scholten & Baijings duo where we designed interior products ranging from textiles and tableware to furniture and electronics. I’ve been very fortunate to have worked on many fascinating projects with global brands like HAY, Herman Miller, IKEA, MINI, Maharam, Georg Jensen and Samsung. However, it’s my 7-year old son Rem, that’s without a doubt my proudest creation.
What does your ideal day look like for you?
”An ideal day is finding that balance between working and spending time with friends and family. I can spend hours mixing my own colours and sketching designs but I equally love to do some gardening or spend a summer afternoon having a glass of wine with friends. Rem also loves spending time outside so lately I’ve been doing a lot of fishing and building treehouses.”
What is the best thing about motherhood, in your eyes?
”Being able to see Rem grow up and experience the world is certainly one of the best things. He can ask the most innocent questions that just seem so profound. As we get older I think we often lose that sense of inquisitiveness. We just do things because that’s the way we were told they were supposed to be done. It’s great to be able to watch him grow up and continue questioning the world around him.
It’s similar when designing. I of course love seeing the finished version of a product but I also enjoying seeing that very product through someone else’s eyes. I spend so much time designing and supervising production that it is very refreshing when a new pair of eyes or hands gets to experience it.”
Where do you find most of your inspiration?
”Colour is my truest passion. It’s at the heart of what I design and something I like to toggle with from start to finish. Colour, and with it ideas of transparency, layering and grids have the potential to add so much dimensionality to a piece - it’s so much more than just the icing on the cake!
Nature is a big inspiration for my work. I like to say that flowers can never be too vulgar, no matter how bright they are. So that’s something I’m constantly challenging myself to further explore: how can I incorporate these bold colours whilst still achieving a sense of refinement?”
What are your five favourite STUDIO MINI products – and why?
“These are my five favourite products:
1. Kale Chewable Baby Toy I love this piece. It looks and feels so real and also has a functional purpose to it – it can be chewed on by babies as the start growing their first teeth. The Kale is also filled with minerals and is water rich and will have them loving the idea of Kale as they grow up (if only Rem liked anything green!).
It’s made of 100% natural rubber from the Hevea tree and its been painted with safe, natural food graded dyes. The beautiful colour gradients and overlaps that make the Kale look so real are the result of it being hand-painted.
In a previous Scholten & Baijings project we made a series called ‘Vegetables’, which also required hand painting the textiles to create a similar effect. The ‘Vegetables’ didn’t have the functional aspect this Kale does but it certainly shared the intensity, colour and craftmanship – perhaps that’s why this is a favourite!
2. Water Bottle Pillow I’m in love this Water Bottle Pillow. It’s made by a self-managed community of indigenous women in Bolivia and is knitted from baby Alpaca wool. Not only have they created a sustainable, well-designed product, but I like the humour and cheekiness of it – that’s always been a hallmark of Dutch Design.
3. Memory Game Rem and I love to play games together and memory is one of our favorites. It’s not only good for the mind, but it usually keeps him quiet enough to eat his dinner as well. The well-known illustrations of Soft Gallery produced by MADO were always going to be a success.
4. ASMR Wallpaper I’ve always liked to use gradients and believe this ASMR wallpaper has a soothing subtlety to it. I started using gradients for the first time back in 2005 with the introduction of our ‘Colour Plaids’ and a bed linen series for HAY. Of course, these wallpapers are made to size so you can be sure the gradient fits the entire wall and transforms your space.
5. MIDI Storage Box Space is often an issue for me, so I’m excited to find well-designed products that help solve that problem but also look great. I love the colours and grids used here. Add to cart, please. ”