by An Bogaerts, design critic for De Standaard and De Tijd
Anouk is a no-nonsense designer and interior stylist based in Antwerp. After graduating as a civil engineer architect at the University of Leuven, she relocated to Oslo where she immersed herself in Scandinavian designs and the sophisticated interiors of the North. Despite the immediate interest in interior design, she gained experience as a project architect while acquiring a Master in Project Management and Entrepreneurship in Oslo and teaching Sustainable Architecture at the University of Trondheim.
Anouks thriving ambition was not fully satisfied in Oslo. After four years she moved back to Belgium with two very clear goals: to design her own objects and to become an entrepreneur. Those goals were met in the new brand she launched: byANOUK.
With her first creation, Myshelf, an innovative design-shelf, Anouk shows how creativity and technology can merge into a genius and stylish symbiosis. ByANOUK is now a graceful design label covering a variety of refined minimalist designs with a clever twist.
Beside her personal designs, Anouk has been able to make a profession out of her passion for decoration. She’s adding warmth and elegance to many residences and has a soft spot for charming mansions where she can combine her passion for both architecture and interior design. Styling her own beautiful Belle Epoque residence in Antwerp resulted in an absolute pièce de résistance. This beautiful space also functions as a showroom and a studio for shootings. "I invite my clients at home, so they can see how the lamps and accessories are in real everyday life, before they order them". The most frequent reaction when visitors pass by? "A big Wow".
Anouk is the stereotype of what one would call ‘a people person’. She loves to interact and advise people on designing and styling their homes. That is exactly why she was asked to feature on national Belgian television (TV channel VIER) as a design expert. In programmes like ‘Baksteen in de Maag’ en ‘Ons Eerste Huis’ Anouk managed to give her unvarnished opinion in the most charming way possible.
Fascinated by the world of entrepreneurship and eager to inspire wherever she can, Anouk frequently collaborates with brands that have a corresponding vision on aesthetics, quality and sustainability. She is constantly looking for new challenges and innovative ways to express her sense of aesthetics. Together with partner-in-crime Sophie Peelman she organises in December the pop-up A Better Blend. A retail innovation offering out-of-the-ordinary Christmas gifts and decorations. A Better Blend has grown to be a successful project combining over 45 strong brands.
On the personal side, Anouk is someone with a strong opinion, a very open mind and tons of humour. Her ironical jokes even led to another business idea: the shirts and sweaters of Bitch Please & Please Behave, a cooperation with Sigie Jacobs. And because every girl needs her jewelry, Anouk has translated her brass and gold fascination into the accessory brand Kyss jewelry. Aside of creating her own clever brands, Anouk is more than happy to help with the branding of your label or project. Visual concepts, marketing strategies or social media. You name it, Anouk will manage it.