An Interview with VIVIAN HOORN, Creative Director of VIVEH

Hi Vivian, thanks so much for taking the time to speak to us today. Could you please start by telling us how VIVEH came to life?

VIVEH was born from my personal experience in the fashion industry. For years I felt like I didn’t fit in because of my body type. I started as a model when I was 14, and I always needed to change myself to be perfect in the eyes of society, clients and the industry. Social media made me even more conscious about what I should look like, but eventually I decided to choose myself. The joy and contentment I felt in who I am, led me to try to inspire other women to love themselves for who they are. But, even if we accept ourselves, the fashion industry doesn‘t always cater to us. For me, it was hard to find well-fitting clothes that made me feel confident or that appreciated my curves. That‘s how VIVEH was born.

“You are not enough. You need to loose weight. You are too loud. I hear these voices, just like you do, every day. I‘m not fearless, I‘m just brave. I invite my fear to the table, I hear it, but I don‘t let it make decisions.“

Can you tell us more about your personal experiences and frustrations that led to the creation of Viveh as a movement for inclusivity in fashion?

I always felt like I didn’t fit the fashion industry’s standards. Trends are not usually designed for people with larger bodies. I wanted to wear certain items but they weren’t made in my size. Or if they were available, I felt uncomfortable in my body because the items were designed by someone who doesn‘t understand a curvier body. Most brands create a sample on size 34/36 then scale it up. At VIVEH, we create everything on size 40/42 on my body and we size it down and up. You‘ll notice a lot of our items are made with soft, stretchy material, or are adjustable. We want you to feel comfortable & confident in VIVEH. Clothes are supposed to give you more confidence. We all understand the struggle of ‘not fitting our clothes’ and feel frustrated and angry with ourselves. I wanted to create a brand that understands female bodies and encourages them to love themselves. I wanted to do that by creating clothes that feel tailor-made.

How does VIVEH aim to challenge societal norms and empower individuals to embrace their authentic selves?

For us, building a community around empowerment and self-love means projecting diversity in every campaign, shoot and fitting we do. We work with a wide range of models, with different body types and features. Our brand is a mirror of what we see in society. We‘re a new brand at the beginning of our journey, further down the line we hope to extend our size range. We want to mix traditional high fashion with day-to-day style and pour our passion, confidence and creativity into VIVEH.

VIVEH started as a B2C brand; what made you explore opportunities in the B2B market?

We wanted to work with partners that believe in our core values. We received a lot of requests from shops that want to sell VIVEH, and we want to do that but in a professional manner that fits the brand. Growing for us means reaching more people and hopefully leaving a positive impact on them. Our clients want to explore VIVEH not only online but also offline. B2B is the step next to our goal, creating a VIVEH experience in-store.

What are some of the challenges that VIVEH has faced in its journey towards promoting inclusivity, and how have you overcome them?

It‘s important to understand inclusivity is a wide spectrum. While we strive to include as many people as possible, there are certain people we may not be able to accommodate at this stage, especially as a young brand. Currently, our focus is on expanding our size range, and we have plans to offer more length options in the future. As our company grows, we aim to provide sizing options for everyone. Although we would also love to introduce different lengths, as a new brand, we have some limitations. By growing together with VIVEH, we can work towards boosting the confidence and happiness of more individuals!

What steps is VIVEH taking to change the narrative in fashion and society regarding body acceptance and self-love?

We talk about body inclusivity and self-love as our inspiration, but it’s also the actual product that we want to focus on. Designing comfortable clothes that look good on a wide range of different bodies is one of the biggest steps for us on the way to acceptance. People should feel happy, comfortable and seen when wearing VIVEH.

Can you provide any insights into the future vision of VIVEH as a brand?

We would love to grow our community and change the narrative around fashion and sizing. We want to inspire other brands to extend their size range and inspire women to wear what they want to wear rather than what society tells them to wear. Show yourself! We’ll continue to work with small family-owned factories around the world alongside various talented designers in order to be able to cater to women of all shapes and sizes.

Our theme for the paper is ‚breakthrough‘, what was your breakthrough and how would you name it?

Self-acceptance is never easy, and self-love is a never-ending journey. You need to understand that in every relationship, there’s a lot of work involved, especially the one with yourself. But the moment you look into the mirror and you are happy and thankful, that is your breakthrough. Our breakthrough for VIVEH was when we saw all the passion and creativity we poured into the designs come to life. The moment we launched we received so much love and deep-felt personal thank-you messages. It
made us realise we are really making a difference.

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