Q&A: PRÊT À PREGNANT TALKS WITH: ANNA VAN DEN BOGERT – FOUNDER OF ARTIPOPPE
Anna van den Bogert is the queen of baby wearing. This fashionable power mommy managed to make baby wearing ´Vogue worthy´ by creating her avant-garde baby wearing label Artipoppe. Anna describes herself as a designer, dreamer, sceptic, animal and mother. That triggered us to learn more about this inspiring power mommy. Anna tell us more about you and Artipoppe!
Who is Anna?
If the characters, as we know them, of Anna Wintour and Kurt Cobain secretly had a baby, it would be me.
What is Artipoppe?
Established in the Netherlands in 2012, Artipoppe is a pioneer in babywearing design. We were the first company to introduce a woven baby wrap as a fashion item above a baby utility.
What made you realize that you wanted to start Artipoppe? What was your feeling in that moment?
Babywearing is fashion. Let’s show the world.
What is the biggest advantage of ‘babywearing’ in your perspective?
The biggest benefit of babywearing in my opinion is that you are able to adjust to your baby’s needs at all times while you can still go on with your life.
What is the philosophy behind Artipoppe?
I believe there is a revolution going on in motherhood. I believe equality between men and women can be found in the acceptance that there is a difference. I would love for all women to have the choice to make a career, but the choice to raise their children in a safe environment where the mother is close should also be considered legitimate and valuable. Science is increasingly showing the benefits of bonding. Children are the future, and to raise them well and thoughtful should be considered an important and satisfying job. I believe attachment and security is the way to stimulate children to become independent and secure and the job to reach that goal should never be underestimated.
For new mothers, loss of identity can be a risk. Artipoppe strives to give mothers a way to express themselves, and make a fashion statement, while at the same time using a very practical product to make life for every parent with a baby easier.
What has been the most distinctive partnership for Artipoppe so far? And what partnership do you dream of?
We are licensed to use M.C. Escher’s work for our designs. I love his work and still feel blessed that they allow us to translate his work into beautiful fabrics. In the future I would love to collaborate with a large fashion house to gain exposure and unchain the hype of babywearing as fashion on a massive scale.
How have you been able to turn the stuffy image of baby wraps around to becoming a designer must-have?
We put babywearing in Vogue. If it was that easy, that could be the answer. But seriously, translating vision and faith into styling, photography and aesthetics is the real reason.
Can you tell us more about the beautiful fabrics that are used for Artipoppe?
We believe in sustainable production methods. All of our wraps and ring slings are woven and finished in the Netherlands. We create our own fabrics. We buy yarns from the best spinners in the world, mostly from Italy. Once a week I visit the weaving mill in the Netherlands to weave prototypes and samples and setup production.
Where does your inspiration for the different prints come from?
As the design options of the wrap itself are narrow, material and pattern are everything. My inspiration comes from every imaginable angle, but I have a love for things we find in nature. Animal prints, feathers, leaves, stars. I strive for every wrap to look good on jeans and a simple t-shirt because that is comfortable mommy-wear.
What type of woman do you envision when you are designing?
The woman I design for has a great personality and intelligence. She is not afraid of making choices. She radiates beauty and is confident of herself and her choices.
What does the custom made-to-order process look like? Do you sit together with the client to look at what fits with her, etc.?
We offer a Special Order without boundaries. We can weave gold into a wrap, include an embroidered monogram or just personalize an existing pattern in one’s favourite colours. Our customers are coming from all over the world, so everything goes through e-mail. Samples are sent by mail so people get to touch and see the product along the way. Like I said before, no boundaries except for my approval on the aesthetics.
How does Artipoppe distinguish itself from the other baby wrap labels?
We distinguish ourselves from other baby wrap labels with our vision and aesthetics. We put babywearing in perspective of an era, and of the changes in motherhood, as we see them. We look at a baby wrap as being an item for a mother, a statement piece that tells something about her choices and values. Our wraps are pieces of art that provide a feeling of glamour and fashion in a life of diapers and lack of sleep.
Which wrap is your favourite? Which print?
At the moment I am crushing hard on our Leopard. The Ultimate Leopard is my favourite wrap, but could be something else next month.
Do you look for an outfit to go with a wrap or a wrap for an outfit?
My wraps are accessories to me. Sometimes a wrap is so extraordinary I create an outfit around it, but mostly I just style them around an outfit. One of the best things about our wraps is that they can make any outfit shine.
Artipoppe is described as the ‘designer bag’ in the world of baby wraps! What is your favourite designer bag? Why? And what do you carry in it?
My favourite bag is my vintage Kelly by Hermès. Its design is so classy and timeless. It is like Mary Poppins’ bag and I put everything I need in it. Diapers, clean baby garments, lip balm, sunglasses and a wrap. I carry a Chanel WOC next to it, that is where I store my money and phone.
Next to being a business babe and mother, you are also a style icon! What is your favourite designer and why?
I do not have a favourite designer. I love high quality clothing, with certain aesthetics. I tend to fall for designers that either have a history or are writing history by being genuine and revolutionary.
What is your ultimate styling secret?
Don’t look at names, just look at the magic an item can bring to your outfit. Mix & match beautiful new design with vintage. Always add a surprising touch, don’t be afraid to be eccentric.
You are a power woman who runs an international designer label next to having a family with four children. What is your ultimate tip for other mothers that dream of a career?
Trust your gut and follow your instincts. Take risks and make choices. Don’t take things too seriously.
What is the most remarkable thing that you have ever learned from your children?
That there is a whole spiritual world out there.
Do you believe in freewill or in destiny?
What is your biggest goal for 2017?
To create a better balance between career and family.
Which (celeb) mother would you love to give an Artipoppe gift to?
Which women inspire you? And why?
Currently Mary-Kate & Ashley Olsen, I love their style and business sense.
Artipoppe is booming, but what’s next on your wish list?
I have so much to do before my babywearing revolution is considered done. Just for my own joy, I would love to create jeans. Full-time motherhood is also on my list, though I doubt that will ever happen.
Published on Prêt a Pregnant January 2017