A Dialogue with Kiki van Eijk: Leading the New Generation of Dutch designers

Kiki van Eijk is one of the names that are leading the new generation of Dutch designers today. She graduated with honors from Design Academy Eindhoven. Currently, she is working on her own collection which is presented in galleries, museums and fairs worldwide, in London, Paris, New York, Milan, Cologne, Venice, Kuwait, Tokyo, Montreal, Rome, Amsterdam, Basel, Miami, Rotterdam, Brussels, Monaco, Moscow etc.

Besides her own collection she works on projects for companies and institutions such as Studio delkoort Paris, Design Academy Eindhoven, SKITSCH, MOOOI, Ahrend, Royal Leerdam Crystal, BKKC, van Kempen & Begeer, Serax, Brainport Operations, Bernhardt Design, Forbo flooring, Venice Projects, Audax Textile Museum, Zuiderzee museum Enkhuizen, Hermès, Saint-Louis and many more.

For 2 years she has been the art director of the Design Academy restaurant “deWitte Tafel”.

Her work is published and sold worldwide. Publications include Wallpaper, Elle deco, Harpers Bazaar, Vogue, de Architect, Icon magazine, Glamour, and The International Design Year Book. Lately, we got an opportunity of interviewing the most versatile and talented designer, so without much ado, please scroll down and see what the designer has to say about herself,


Photographer: Lisa Klappe

TechieTonics: If we talk about your practice, do you think Dieter Rams’ Ten Principles of Good Design holds true today? Taking the case of present day scenario, is it even be possible to establish a set of top-level principles? 

Kiki van Eijk: I’m sorry I don’t know these principles! But in general, I don’t like to work with principles. The challenge is to not stick to your own principles too much. I guess that results in more creative and authentic designs!

TechieTonics: You graduated Cum Laude from the Design Academy Eindhoven in 2000, how would you think designers contribute to innovation and economic growth in Eindhoven since then? 

Kiki van Eijk: Slowly throughout the years since then a lot of small design companies have settled themselves in Eindhoven and of course therefore have contributed to innovation and economic growth. Not only for Eindhoven, but also for Holland in an international perspective.


Floating Frames- Coffee Table Red & Floating Frames- Table Shade

TechieTonics: Would you please substantiate a little about the various themes, on which you have worked so far?    

Kiki van Eijk: That’s difficult to describe in a few lines. But I develop different themes according to what I get inspired or interested by. For example the project in glass “allotment” is about our future and how we grow or food etc. But I also work on projects that are purely about re-inventing shapes and materials.

TechieTonics: How do you deal with boredom and tedium? Do you mind doing things all over again? Or is it your intuitive designing process that helps you taking a different path/approach all together? 

Kiki van Eijk: I hate boredom! And yes it’s true I try to get far away from that by using my creativity, not only in design but also in my general life.

TechieTonics: As a patroness of DDW, what do you think is the biggest misconception or unknown about the profession of industrial design? 

Kiki van Eijk: That we always need to solve problems! I don’t think in problems, but opportunities!


Floating Frames – Grandmother Clock & Floating Frame Mantel Clocks l Photographer: Marielle Leenders & Ruy Teixeira

TechieTonics: What are your thoughts on the visual elements of a design that make one product more recognizable or interesting over another? 

Kiki van Eijk: That’s very difficult to define. I think it’s all about originality…

TechieTonics: Do you agree with the notion, design will be the key feature in the next wave of sustainability? 

Kiki van Eijk: I wouldn’t say the key feauture! But I do think it’s important to think about sustainability in design too. On the other hand; it depends on how you define “ design”. In fact human beings think they can design life….

TechieTonics: Is there any crazy client story with the big lesson you learnt from the experience? 

Kiki van Eijk: Of course that there are some clients that NEVER paid… very sad…


Sewing Box Cabinet

TechieTonics: What are your future plans with respect to your designs? And presently, what are the interesting things that have hooked your attention? 

Kiki van Eijk: I have become mother of a beautiful son and the slow tempo of a baby is learning me a lot… so at the moment I’m taking a lot of time to rethink about design and what could be a next step in my work.

TechieTonics: Which future technologies are you excited about? 

Kiki van Eijk: The ones we don’t know yet!


Zuiderzee Settings l Photographer: Frank Tielemans

Rapid fire round: 

TechieTonics: What is your latest obsession? 

Kiki van Eijk: My baby boy

TechieTonics: What inspires you in your city? 

Kiki van Eijk: People

TechieTonics: Your favorite pieces of music?  

Kiki van Eijk: Joni Mitchell “dreamland”

TechieTonics: If you could choose to make a dream come true, it would be? 

Kiki van Eijk: Quite o lot of my dreams have come true already, so I’m thinking of some new ones…!

TechieTonics: If given a week’s holidays, how would you spend them? 

Kiki van Eijk: Spend them in quietness with my 2 boys, nature and sunshine.


Zuiderzee Settings l Photographer: Frank Tielemans

Kiki this has been a real pleasure! I can’t thank you enough on behalf of myself and TechieTonics for taking out time and enable us to learn more about you and your career. Please know that you are welcome back any time and we look forward to visiting with you again and seeing much more of your work in the future. All the very best with all your forthcoming endeavors.

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