Mainstreet in Leiden
I photographed them together prior to a show by Dries van Noten in Paris in September 2017. Later it turned out that Brigitte and her daughter Eveline came from Leiden, where they own a fashion store. That made me curious, so I went off to Leiden. You will find Mainstreet in the center of the city. In a beautiful, authentic and very tastefully decorated place.
Brigitte: “When I started my own shop 30 years ago, I was the first in the Netherlands to sell Dries van Noten and I was invited to his shows. I do not have a favorite designer; it is difficult to choose because of the diversity and range of different designers. I am always looking for ‘the inspiration’ in their work; I have to see that in their designs. I have a feeling for special details and beautiful fabrics. Every season we are also looking for new designers, with work that matches the rest of the collection that we sell. For example, Mooiloop from Ghent. We followed them a few seasons, now we are selling it. Combining clothes by different designers is also a challenge. It is very special to work with my daughter. And it is also very nice to be able to pass on my knowledge.”
Eveline: “Our customers are women who consciously choose their clothes. They do not follow trends mindlessly but build up a nice wardrobe step-by-step. There are customers who, for example, bought a piece from Dries van Noten years ago and are still very happy with it. And combine this with new items. We notice that people like to come for good advice and appreciate it that we help them along. These women come from near and far and are happy to take the detour. I followed a training course AMFI Fashion Management and did an internship at the marketing department at Vivienne Westwood. After that, I had several jobs, among others at Ilja Visser. My mother and I have been working together for more than 6 years now. How challenging the collaboration sometimes is, ultimately it is also very nice. And it brings good results, we complement each other. I do not have a favorite designer; Dries van Noten is, of course, a stable factor. But lately, I am pleasantly surprised by the work of Christian Wijnants. He is slightly more fashionable, yet elegant and not too trendy. ”
The Treasure Room
A surprise awaits me on the first floor of the building: The Treasure Room. It is as tastefully decorated as the ground floor, but it turns out to be a designer outlet. With clothes, shoes, and accessories for attractive prices. With brands that also occupy the ground floor, such as Rundholz, Zenggi, Annemie Verbeke and Dries van Noten. Eveline: “It used to be our warehouse, but we have turned this space into a ‘treasure room’. It is open from the end of April until the end of July and from the first of November until the end of January every Friday (10 am-6 pm) and Saturday (10 am-5 pm).”
“Details are important at Mainstreet. That is why a seating area has been created for ‘the waiting man or woman’.
Do you like t stay informed? Please sign in for the newsletter.