Interview with Ferry Meewise
How did you get started with your collection?
I was studying horticulture at the time. And although I really loved it, I felt the need to create things. So one day, to the complete shock of everyone I knew, I hadn’t talked about it to anyone, I switched to the art academy.… Surprise everyone :-)
Where do you find your inspiration? and how has this changed over time since you began to design?
I remember the comment I got when I made my first bag in art academy. ‘It looks like you’ve never seen a bag before’. The comment was prompted both by the unusual shape and my… well, suboptimal technical skills. And between those two is exactly where my inspiration lies. I’m fascinated by how bags can be made and I love coming up with techniques that have never been used before. I’m always looking for the best marriage between the quality of the leather and new constructions.
Where did you learn your craft?
After the above mentioned comment, I was advised to follow a course to learn about leather working skills. But I didn’t go. I had so much to discover on my own. So many ideas I wanted to try. The last thing I wanted was to learn how everybody else did it. Many years later I did go to that course. By then I had been making leather bags for years and had developed a distinct style. At that point I wanted to be sure there was no knowledge I was overlooking for all that time.
What is your hope for the future?
After working with producers in Poland and India for a while, I found myself slowly turning into a manager. And with having the production done by someone else I felt I lost the connection with my work. I decided to return to my studio in The Netherlands and make all the pieces I sell with my own two hands. This is how I like to work, a small company where making and designing are on the same table. It’s honest and direct, this is what I’m good at and what I have to offer to the world.
What is your main source of calm/distraction during these stressful times?
I can never stop making things, so now I make stuffed animals in tiny boxes and send them by post to friends I can’t visit right now. And the horticulture has returned to my life a few years ago. I’m packing my garden with ever more fruits and veg. Spend a few hours working in the garden and you’re sure to have forgotten all the problems in the world.
What is your favorite design at the moment?
That must be the Wednesday. Once in a while I design a bag just because I need/want one. It combines a self-developed technique with the best leather I have. And it also refers to my friends saying I walk too fast. Hence the handles. ノノ