I first came across Villa Carton through their DIY Flip Dolls and I thought they were pretty amazing. Then I went to their site and saw the two of them holding these huge, funky looking dolls and I just had to know more...
For introduction, could you first tell us a few words about yourselves? Who are the people behind Villa Carton?
We are Manon and Ruud van
den Broek. Happily married, 2 kids and both designers. We graduated from
the Art Academy years ago and since we met each other we started to
make all kind of creative business plans.
How did it all start?
It was what Manon
liked most when she was a child. Building her own home with a big
cardboard box, which was used as a package box for a new washing
machine. In 2006, we came with
the idea for a big cardboard play castle. Without any experience of
doing business on an international platform, we went straight to the
biggest Toyfair in the world: the Nürnberg Toyfair. We had a very bad
spot, behind a pillar, but the first reactions of some international
customers were beyond all expectations. They simply loved our new
concept and we were the first company worldwide with a big cardboard
play castle. We received a lot of free publicity and we were able to add
some new and innovative products to our collection each year .
Most of your products are customizable. How important is the DIY factor to you and why?
prefer to design products that will inspire children to use their
imagination and fantasy. At this moment Villa Carton is known by it's
DIY products, but it might happen that we will come with a complete new
idea. As long as it inspires the creativity and real play it is o.k.
You have kids, how much do they influence your work?
do have 2 children. A girl of 6 and a boy of 4 years old. Sometimes we
ask them to give their opinion about new designs, but they always seem
to love it. Of course we observe their preference for toys and we
understand and accept their 'bad taste' too. There is so much overkill
for children these days....
Which part of the creative process do you like best?
like the designing part the most. We collect lots of nice ideas for
inspiration. We pick some out of it and we start designing a new product
in our own style.
you have a 5-10-year plan, or do you just do it instinctively?
We have some plans of course, but most of the time the design of a product begins instinctively.
Favorite Dutch designers!
Hella Jongerius, Marcel Wanders, Piet Hein Eek.
Favorite foreign designers!
Karim Rashid, Philippe Starck
AND NOW FOR THE GIVEAWAY!
Just in time for Halloween, Villa Carton is giving away one of these amazing, color in costumes to one lucky boy or a girl who will, without a doubt, be the star of that party. The costumes are
one size fits all for children from 3 to 8 years old. Every package
contains 4 fabric markers and a costume inclusive the headgear. There are 10 styles available: king, knight, police, super hero, pirate, queen, princess, nurse, oriental dancer and geisha. To enter, tell me in the comment to this blog post which one do you think your kiddo would want to wear most. Please also confirm that you have commented in the Rafflecopter tool below, this will open up some additional entries for you, to increase you chances of winning.
a Rafflecopter giveaway