I was raised between textile shreds and lumps of clay. From clothing to furniture, almost everything at my parents’ house is handmade. I could always find my mother in her ‘hobby-room’ behind the sewing machine or modelling clay sculptures. In fact, she’s still there.
My parents are very resourceful. At first they may have been forced to this for financial reasons, but now it’s in their system and they would not even consider buying a closet that doesn’t really fit their room.
My mom is super creative but she’s also the queen of being a perfectionist. She is my teacher and my inspiration. As a teen I used to beg her for a pair of jeans from a ‘real’ shop, but now I love to design and make clothes with her. My parents taught me not to settle for second best, but also to enjoy the process – probably the most important lesson!
Since I’ve finished my pro cycling career and started working full time as a designer, I need to be innovative every day, and I’ve noticed I’m also quite the perfectionist myself. Somehow, I still prefer to do things the hard way. The challenge is bigger but the result is all the more satisfying.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a cyclist, designer or something completely different, focus on opportunities, not on shortcomings.
Thanks mom for that lesson!