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Arts + Lifestyle

From The Desk Of... NEOUS' Vanissa Antonious

Designed in London by Australian-Egyptian Vanissa Antonious, NEOUS’ designs are the epitome of modern minimalism, with silhouettes influenced by architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s “less is more” philosophy.

Her shoes and bags are meticulously handcrafted in Italy and inspired by modern art, sculpture and nature, while acknowledging wearability is key. Here, she takes us behind-the-scenes of her day-to-day life as the founder of one of London’s most stylish accessory brands.


Where is your office?

Old Street, London.

How do you start your days?

Water, meditation and the gym.

 

 

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What’s your go-to uniform?

A blazer, T-shirt, pleat front trousers and NEOUS shoes and bags (of course). Currently my favourite pieces are the LYRA leather shoulder bag and the Sabik slingback pumps.

Describe your workspace…

Organised chaos.

Define your aesthetic…

Minimal yet distinctive.

 

 

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Identify something in your workspace that’s special to you…

Thank you cards. I treasure them – they all live on my desk.

What are your workplace essentials?

Measuring tape, pencil, blank paper, plants and a great playlist.

What time of day are you at your most creative?

Normally in the late afternoon.

Work takes you most frequently to.. 

Italy. It’s my second home and being there brings me such happiness.

What’s your go to lunch order?

Sushi-Uchi is a favourite at the moment.

What is the most rewarding part of the job?

The people, the love, the connection and the experiences.

And the most challenging?

The juggling – we work across a few seasons at a time and we are very conscientious on limiting waste. Purposeful creation as well as reflective design is really important for us.

If you were to write a two-line job spec for yourself, it would read as follows…

Creative problem solver.

 

 

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What did you study in school or university?

Art History and Theory.

Where are you from originally?

I was born in Australia and have Egyptian heritage, but am now based in London. I miss the sunshine but love being in such a dynamic city.

What was your first job?

A waitress.

What first sparked your interest in accessory design?

I wanted the ability to walk on London’s cobbled streets in heels. Also to create beautiful accessories that balance comfort and creation.

Do you have a mentor or inspirational figure that has guided or influenced you?

Everyone I have ever worked with. I have been lucky to work with many talented and dedicated creators.

 

 

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What were some hurdles you had to overcome in the early days as a designer?

Constantly being told it wasn’t possible. There are so many hurdles in a traditional industry.

What’s the most important business lesson you’ve learned?

Do the boring stuff before it’s too late.

The best advice you’ve ever received?

It’s ok to fall apart every now and then, it helps you to stop and see the future.

What are you working on right now?

AW24 and a few exciting new brand activations. We just returned from Paris where we celebrated the last of the summer sun and the release of our beautiful High Summer collection.

 

 

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What’s next for NEOUS?

Connection. Community is important to us and we are in the middle of building some exciting moments of connectivity with inspirational women who are part of our NEOUS landscape.


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