I am often asked how my collections are born.
I never really know how to answer this question because they are all related: I do not know when they start or really if they end.
Heimstone for me is like a big open book: the one of my life, my inspirations, my memories, my trials, my challenges, my travels, what I like but also against what I struggle. The creativity I've been talking about since the beginning is what fulfills me, and Heimstone is the result of all that.
If there is no beginning, no end, there is no frontier between Heimstone and me. I think I can say it's like we're one. I put all of myself in this brand that I consider as a whole universe, the extension of myself. These are not chapters one after the other but a great discussion that I opened and never stops, fed each new season, on which rebounds each new capsule, each new desire and that each new person in my life and all my energy feed.
I was lucky to have a very happy childhood with wonderful parents who, despite their busy working lives, have always favored us.
We had the chance to travel a lot, to have parents for whom art, interior, decoration, well-being, sport and quality food always had an essential place in their balance.
Our childhood was bathed by visits to museums, the discovery of new culture, outings to the theater etc. it was our daily life.
I give a real importance to creativity and I find it a tool and an extraordinary force in life. I think my parents have awakened this at home.
As far as I can remember, I have always loved drawing. I remember that my father had taken me to see an exhibition of Rembrandt's drawings, and it had been a revelation for me, I was amazed by the complex simplicity of the pencil line.
I can not say that I am a very good designer, but I love it.
Even more than drawing, I like painting, colors, fabrics and prints.
When I was a teenager, I remember having traveled to Ivory Coast several times (the parents of my best friend lived there), and I spent my days in the markets, to hunt fabrics.
I loved seeing all these Wax fabrics. They were all colorful and colorful with patterns that had nothing to do with each other. I thought "But what a creativity, what a cheek to mix all these patterns!".
I remember on that day understanding that everything is possible, that in fact, the only barriers we have in life are the ones we create ourselves.
If I found them beautiful, it was precisely because they were not matched.
Even today, when I create my collections, I'm still looking for that, I often say to the girls with whom I work: "I love it so much, it doesn't fit together." It makes them laugh!
When I was a little girl, I traveled a lot in Africa, Morocco, Egypt, the United States, India and I had for each of these countries a fascination for different textile work. I love Maine's old Maine style boutis blankets, as much as the beautiful Moroccan Kilim carpets.
I find that travelling helps creativity in the sense that we see a lot of new things but not only... I love jet lag, I find that there is a moment out of time that leaves time in mind to roam freely and reinterpret images that we have seen, with a different point of view.
I think I also made the most beautiful Heimstone pieces on a plane!
I have always wanted to keep a record of my travels, a trace on which I can come back, to remember, to remember how I thought of such a period of my life.
Very early, I started making travel books. I do not really like writing, but I like collages, I like to paste all kinds of things: my plane tickets, a restaurant card, a dried flower, a theater ticket, a piece of tissue ... In short, I love to stick!
But I also like to color, paint, draw, frame, surround, I find an incredible satisfaction in it.
So I started making travel books. They were ugly at the time, I was probably looking for my style.
When I started Heimstone, I was 23, and I was traveling a lot. My twin sister Caroline (@threesevenparis) lived in New York, my brother (@antoineblanchetfilms), lived in Los Angeles, and I spent my time going back and forth to the United States. From that moment, influenced by my childhood rocked by travel, I kept everything, everything to draw and all I had the chance to see has continued to inspire the Heimstone collections.
The United States is a major influence for me, they have inspired and continue to inspire many of my collections.
In July 2007, I started one of the most beautiful trips of my life: the United States tour by car.
The goal was to cross all the states of the United States by car, without ever taking the highway.
One of four notebooks on the tour of the United States.
This trip inspired the Fall-Winter 2008-2009 collection with the Indians of America collection.
Six trips and two years later, it was done, in August 2009, I closed this journey with the final destination, Alaska.
It inspired the 2010-2011 winter collection, Nome, probably the most beautiful trip of my life, then I went to Hawaii.
Some of my favourite addresses in the United States:
The Deetjens's Inn in Big Sur, California
Dunton Hot Springs, Dolores, Colorado
Thunderbird Hotel, Marfa Texas
This hotel has inspired the Heimstone Thunderbird collection for summer 2013.
Thunderbird Collection Summer 2013, Ella Rose Richards shot by Sonia Sieff.
One of my travels from California to the very bottom of the American Midwest inspired the Echo Winter 2012-2013 collection.
A very quiet journey, long and laborious because the landscapes are all the same, the roads are flat between the former lands Kellogg's. Nothing happens. These are hours and hours of driving in the middle of nowhere.
Nevertheless, in the middle of August the temperature is around 45 degrees Celsius and I was able to witness incredible thunderstorms, where the sky becomes black and threatening. One of my photos that can be seen below, it gave birth to the Orage print.
We stopped in Decatur, Illinois to visit my twin sister Caroline and her husband Jonas who were living there. At that time, they made custom furniture "Three Seven" and were based at Jonas’ dad.
One day, we went to a Decatur tool shop to look for furniture hardware.
All the shops were already in preparation for Thanksgiving (an institution there!). I photographed a whole alley of fake autumn leaves, and I made a printed one.
(Below, the famous fake leaves on the right page, and the print below)
In Monterey, California, I photographed jellyfish in an aquarium (just with my iPhone) and made the Jellyfish print.
A few years later, I met my husband, Onur, in New York. He is of Turkish origin but he grew up in Australia. When we met, he was still living in Sydney.
The first months of our relationship, we met in Turkey, a country he made me discover and which inspired my life, but also the December winter 2013-2014 collection.
A fish market in Istanbul inspired the fish print.
Sometimes, the prints can be inspired by shapes or colors that I like, without there being any specific ideas behind.
This is the case of the "veins" and "strainers" prints of the Winter 2012-2013 December collection.
We also traveled a lot to Australia, which gave birth to our Victoria Bitter print.
A photo of a ship and container port in Canada inspired the "Steamers" print, Alberta Winter 2015-2016 collection.
Creativity is in every corner of my discoveries. I think it's up to everyone to find ideas and inspiration at any moment, just see them. Beyond travels, I’m also inspired by a lot of artists that I like, such as the Dia collection, for the summer of 2012.
This collection made references to the Dia Beacon art foundation in the United States, which I had the opportunity to visit in Marfa, Texas, but also Upstate New York.
I love the neon work of the artist Dan Flavin. Here is a piece inspired by his work :
Or the delicate drawings of Egon Schiele:
To go further, I invite you to read Géraldine Dormoy's interview for the Express Magazine, L’art de voyager d’Alix Petit.
To learn more about our inspirations, follow us on Instagram @heimstone.