What began for Valerie Brems ten years ago as a sideline project for expressing her creativity, has grown into a full-time job over the years. As an influencer and Instagram personality, she provides inspiration for a range of followers with a passion for fashion, lifestyle and interiors. Dauby window handles and door levers are ideal for her interior which offers a clear nod to Hollywood Regency; welcome to the Great Gatsby at Heist-op-den-berg!
From blog to figurehead
The sun is shining as we arrive and a cheerful, heavily pregnant Valerie welcomes us into her home. It only takes a second to take it all in; this interior exudes class. It’s not just the golden palm trees in the living room, it’s also the details such as the children’s kitchen or the various lamps which demonstrate that Valerie has thought long and hard about this interior.
‘I am obsessed with lamps’, she laughs, ‘I trawl through vintage markets looking for that one item that I have in my head and which I’ve been searching for for ages. If I get the call, I drive there immediately because it’s often at an old granny’s house. I think that’s great!’ All of these searches have something in common. ‘I love items with a back-story. I try to find things that I believe in; they have to fit in and feel authentic. Authenticity is really important’
And that is clear. Her blog and Instagram account are not just a medley of PR stunts, but showcase aspects from her day-to-day life and products she believes in. She doesn’t write for a specific target audience, but she accepts that her followers tend to be a little older and must be able to connect with her day-to-day life. And do they? Valerie now has ten years of experience and is happy to continue.
Interiors only joined the blog when she’d been doing it for a while. ‘I’ve always been interested in interiors but in the beginning I didn’t feel like I had much to share. I gradually began to post bits and bobs and saw the fantastic responses. So I slowly developed my own style, which has always been reasonably classic.’
Hollywood Regency, as you describe it yourself, centres on lots of light, geometric shapes, and golden accents to add a touch of luxury. ‘But that could be completely different in five years time. I’m not scared of changing to another tack. I go with what I like.
And her inspiration? ‘I draw inspiration from various places and things; trips to Amsterdam or the flea-market on a Sunday offer a great deal of inspiration. New places or a gorgeous restaurant may also fill me with energy. Sometimes, I may see a jacket with a lovely pattern and that gives me an idea; it can be all sorts of everyday items! ‘
Her major style icons are Joseph Dirand and Lionel Jadot: the first is a Parisian interior designer with a passion for Paris chic, the second is a Brussels-based, eclectic designer who loves dreamy, alternative interiors.
The thing that connects all of this: gold. “I love golden accents and the brass-look, and not just because it’s really trendy at the moment. I’ve always loved it; the palm tree lamp has been with me for over 10 years.’
If it’s not already clear, Valerie has her own sense of style and is often ahead of the trend. But she doesn’t see it like that; ‘It just has to fit right with who I am.’
Dauby window handles and door levers
A collaboration with Dauby is the perfect match. The authentic products, traditional production methods and Dauby’s story all blend seamlessly with everything Valerie represents.
‘The Pure collection really is my thing. Genuine, robust handles in a bronze finish; so stylish! They are perfect for the Hollywood Regency/Paris chic style that I adore and which works so well in my house.’ The bronze handles on the windows and interior doors are a genuine eye-catcher and are the perfect addition to the interior. They work beautifully with the overall look.
I think that window handles and door levers are really important. As far as I’m concerned, style and quality in these fittings are key; Dauby products are very high quality and you can see that right away. I love the black fittings too but those are more suited to an industrial interior.’
Perhaps an idea for the next interior? ‘That’s an option! We are moving soon to my family home and that’s set to be a substantial renovation project.’ Would she choose Dauby again? ‘Absolutely! And a splash-back in metallic tiles for the kitchen is also on my wish list. It’s the details, which are often overlooked, which I find so important in my interior.’
When we ask what it is about Dauby that makes the difference, Valerie doesn’t hesitate. ‘The products are pure quality, and not at all run-of-the-mill. They suit every original interior and are both authentic and stylish.”
Valerie and Dauby; a match made in heaven!