We are so excited to be joined on A Simple Path this month by designer Marianne Vigtel Holland. We came across Marianne’s beautiful images on Instagram and were immediately captivated by the way she captures the beauty in everyday things, and how she uses texture and light in her interior styling. We thought you’d love to hear more about her work, and her thoughts on the importance of using natural materials – like mineral paints that are not only environmentally friendly they also create a unique sense of tranquility, and the many ways she uses linen fabric. Marianne refers to her work as ‘slow design’, which makes it a perfect fit with our slow living ethos here at Linenbeauty.
Read on to hear more about finding the poetry and beauty in the things we surround ourselves with, and how to go with the flow.
Can you tell us what you do and how you came to be doing it?
I work as a ‘slow designer‘, promoting a holistic approach to the design process.
I work on both my own design projects and with different clients whose common denominator is that they can identify with my way of thinking and want to develop their own concepts visually, content-wise or strategically.
I also convey my values and ideas for a slower approach to life on my blog, in magazines, books and social media. I want my work to be more of an inspiration or a guide to an alternative path. For me, this is a lifestyle project, where business and pleasure melt into one, which feels like a very meaningful way of working.
If you had one piece of advice or wisdom to pass on to your younger self, what would it be?
Maybe not to worry so much, but to trust the process, and my gut feeling. Perhaps also to stop comparing myself to others (I guess this is a constant struggle which I still work on everyday. ) On the other hand this is the kind of wisdom that comes with life experience so I guess I should be glad for all the struggles I have been through as they have taken me to the place I am to day.
What is it about slow living and the simple life that you find appealing?
Leonard Koren (author of the book Wabi Sabi ) said ‘Pare down to the essence, but don´t remove the poetry‘. Reading it I realized it could be the slogan of my life. In a world where we are exposed to so many possibilities and options, and the wheels seems to spin faster and faster I believe it is essential to slow things down, and remove everything that is not important to us. The alternative is not responsible.
But we need the ‘poetry’ and to me that is to find pleasure and beauty in the simple things. Looking for creative solutions to solve needs with old materials, or things we already have. I value the imperfect beauty I surround myself with very highly. I am living according to my own conviction and that gives me a sense of calm. I won’t demand more from myself.
How can we counter the pulls of content-sharing and curating images of our lives with the need for being in the moment?
I believe it is all about balance and awareness.
Who inspires you?
I am very easily inspired and can find inspiration in all kinds of situations. Both in nature and in culture (literature, movies, music, art). I am very much inspired by the deep ecology movement, which started with the Norwegian philosopher Arne Næss.
I work with a lot of different customers and they also inspire me deeply. I usually write a story about every project I work on, and how they come to inspire me. Some of them I translate into English.You can read about many of these inspirational people and projects here.
What are your essential homeware items/ things you couldn’t do without?
There are off course a lot of things I would miss a lot if I lost them, but I would like to think that there really isn’t anything I couldn’t do without. That said, I guess I am quite dependent on my coffee machine!
What would you like to be doing in 10 years’ time?
I hope to be doing do more of the same as I’m doing today. Otherwise, I have faith in the process and like the thought of just ‘going with the flow’ in my life’s river.
What’s the wildest thing you’ve ever done?
To me it is important to do stuff that feeds my ‘inner wildness’. Seeking nature, either on the sea, in the forest or the mountains to experience the connection. And also being with animals, like riding horses, or taking my two hunting dogs out in the forest. These are not ‘once in a lifetime’ experiences, but things I need to do a regular basis.