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Mattijs van Bergen's Biro Etchings

A stand out CSM MA grad that has become one of Holland's most promising designers.

Having graduated from Central Saint Martins with an MA in womenswear, 28 year old designer Mattijs van Bergen is based in Amsterdam and during the city’s fashion week, he’s the talent the fashion pack flock to see. His work is all about powerful women with big, volumous shapes and heavy embellishment leading the way (think Giles Deacon if you want to reference).

Dazed Digital: As a Dutch designer, how does it feel to have the Arnhem Mode Biennale sparking off an interest in Dutch design?
Mattijs van Bergen:  It feels funny for me- Holland is not huge on the fashion map at all but people are more and more interested now. There’s a lot of good design coming from Holland and for the Biennale everyone comes from everywhere to see it. Having originally studied in Arnhem but then relocated to London to go to St.Martins, it’s really nice to come back and contribute to the show

DD: Talk us through your design aesthetic
Mattijs van Bergen: I always try to look at soft and hard. I like mixing softer tones with bolder construction, say from mens shirts or mens tailoring. My work is always a reaction to my previous collections so if I do a colour heavy collection, the next will be far more paired down for example

DD: What have you contributed to 2009’s Arnhem Mode Biennale
Mattijs van Bergen: It’s a piece based on my Autumn/Winter 2009 collection but one that I’ve re-created for the event. It’s a creation made from Kaliko that focuses on my interest in going back to design basics. I embellished the piece with blue pen. That sounds simple but it took five days to colour in but to me that’s the beauty of high fashion, the process. It’s funny because it was inspired by my scribbles whilst I was on the phone but I adopted a couture like way of working when making it. It’s very detailed