In conversation with Isla Van DammeIsla Van Damme a.k.a. Loulou is a force of nature. Her petite frame and age belie her vibrant personality and indomitable spirit. Dressed in her unique bohemian style, she cuts a striking figure. Design Consultant for the designer concept store Bungalow 8, she talks happily about style, sustainability and all things design.
Her one true design principle: Being instinctive. Loulou says, "I think that first ideas are always the best. I realised over the years that over-thinking is bad. If you think too much, things may not work out to your liking. When it comes to design, go with your gut."
When it comes to ideating and translating the same onto a canvas, she enjoys the act of quieting her mind and letting the ideas flow. “I don’t think too much. I don’t plan anything.” She doesn’t like to be disturbed when she is visual merchandising. It is not just about setting up a pretty corner and dressing up a wall. All the elements of the space should work together.
If asked to choose between maximalism and minimalism, she is partial to maximalism. “I love colour and warmth. I love mixing. I can do minimalism, but it’s not my thing.” To her, it’s about buying what you like and not being afraid to mix and match.” Loulou loves to play with colours, textures and patterns. “I love mixing things that normally don’t go together and making them work.” One look at her work and her clothing and you know the effortless style with which she manages to do just that.
When biophilic design is mentioned, Loulou says that sustainability is the way to go. She loves to work with natural materials. “It’s a way of life and it’s the only way forward.”