Hello, how are you today?
Very well indeed! The only thing that could make this day better is if we were doing this interview face to face over coffee!
Tell my readers a bit about your story: where are you from, what did you study?
I grew up in Mostar and so in my younger years, I sadly experienced the war there, which I believe had a huge impact on my life and influenced the path I chose. After the war, I graduated from an MA in Fine Arts. I moved to London when I was 23, following my lover and leaving behind the reputation and success I’d achieved in my home country. But I made new friends in London and broke new ground.
In my first year there, I managed to hold nine exhibitions (which is quite insane now that I look back!). This led me to a collaboration with Vivienne Westwood! I was an exhibitor and curator for Vivienne Westwood’s Active Resistance to Propaganda.
When did you first start thinking about Tease Me range?
The concept for Tease Me comes from my observations of the British high-tea rituals. I find it so enchanting.
Where did the idea come from?
Initially, I studied and observed the female form, started sketching, painting and later turned my sketches into a concept for a product. The idea is to use the fluidity of the human form and give it a very specific purpose. Of course, the shapes aren’t all completely literal, I played and evolved them to create a more contemporary object.
Tell me about your design process? How do you make your pieces?
Everything starts in my studio… I send my clay models to Devon where working moulds are made. These moulds then go to my production company in Stoke on Trent where the bone china pieces are made. They are fired twice and the second firing with logo or colour is applied at Heraldic Pottery.
The range started off all white (NDLR: actually the early prototypes also came in pastel colours), now there are different colour options including a stunning gold cup and saucer set. More pieces are in production.
What is it like being a maker and business owner in London?
Both are hard work! Especially without a business degree. I learn everyday… and I make mistakes everyday as well! Sometimes I wish I knew a year ago what I know now, things would have moved more smoothly. However, learning along the way is also a very exciting path…
What inspires you?
When it comes to inspiration, every day counts. Summer is my favourite season as helps me recharge my inspiration batteries. But having been an artist all my life (and now a business owner in art/design), I would say imagination is what occupies my brain on a daily basis.
You live in Notting Hill, what are some of your favourite places there?
There are a few! Most recent one for daily coffee is Pedlars, where I have spend most of my Fridays in the Summer months. the Electric Diner is also great as well as Golbourne Deli for brunch. If I am in the mood for a nice cocktail, I like the Beach Blanket Babylon and The Westbourne.
Reading: The Lives of the Muses by Francine Prose
Making: Trying to come up with environmentally friendly packaging for the Tease Me range.
Dreaming: About Tease Me being successful!
Person: My son Deon! He is kind, caring and understanding. Not bad for an 8 year old!
City: London – Paris – New York
Thing to do: Friday movie night at home in my pyjamas with my son!