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Laurence D'Ari combines Antwerp design with Italian manufacture

Laurence Bourguignon (39) is a young, talented entrepreneur and mother of twins of almost 9 years old. Her parents were passionate wholesale entrepreneurs. After 9 years in the family business, the Antwerp decided to spread her own wings and started her sunglasses label LAURENCE D'ARI.
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What is your morning ritual?
I get up with my children and always start my day with a warm-ice-cold shower to wake up. Then I make a delicious jug of warm water with lemon and fresh ginger. I drink this throughout the day, a real boost for my body and mind. Once the kids are gone, I fly in.


What does a day in your life look like?
No two days look the same and of course it also depends on the time of year. Daily tasks such as service, communication and invoicing, stock management, and packing and sending the glasses to customers are of course a constant. In addition, there are also more fun periods in which I come up with and design new glasses together with my technical designer, further develop the image of the brand, organize photo shoots, etc. But that variety makes it interesting.

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Where do you get inspiration? Do you follow the trends?
My guiding principle is that beautiful glasses should be charismatic and timeless at the same time. That's why trends don't really matter to me. Glasses from LAURENCE D'ARI should not be passé within 5 years. I like to be inspired by vintage glasses from the 60s-70s-80s, which in turn I dare to interpret completely differently and give a modern makeover. During the creation process I let myself be guided mainly by my feelings. My designs will never be a copy of an existing model, they always have that special twist, and that's what makes them so unique.


Who is or was your role model?
To be honest, I don't have an example right away, but people who dare to view the world or objects differently and are therefore innovative, I think are very cool. For example, Coco Chanel introduced 'pants for women' at the time. I really love something like that. Il faut le faire. I would therefore dare to quote her.

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Who would you like to see with a design of yours?
I think it's fantastic when I cross someone on the street wearing one of my glasses. What a wonderful feeling. If I can really dream, I would call Anna Wintour - she can always call me! Iris Apfel, the 98-year-old fashion icon, should definitely try a pair of glasses from me.


What's next for LAURENCE D'ARI?
I especially want to continue working as I am currently doing. I have chosen a niche market, in which I often compete against major players. As a small brand that is not always self-evident, but I will continue to follow my dreams and would eventually like to design models for men.

Do you have a tip for young entrepreneurs?
Do your thing and focus on something in which you are strong. I find it extremely important to follow my passion and to create with love. Without losing sight of the commercial aspect, of course.

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