Born at SaloneSatellite

09 June 2020

Marina Bautier

Born in 1980, the Belgian designer is part of the large cohort of designers who have made their debut at SaloneSatellite. She studied at Buckinghamshire New University in England before setting up her own studio in her birth city of Brussels, launching her brand, Bautier, in 2013 and opening her own shop. She has worked and continues to work with many different companies, including Case Furniture, Idée, Ligne Roset, Stattmann Neue Moebel and Swedese.

Simple, functional and durable. Those are the characteristics of your favourite material: solid wood. But your design process also follows a rigorous concept. What’s the main message you are trying to give?
I’m not trying to pass on any message with my design. The products are designed to be used and last over time. To work perfectly and blend into the user’s environment.

You work on a wide range of projects - from products to interiors and exhibition design - developing your designs for manufacturers as well as for your own brand. How you juggle both roles? Designer and entrepreneur.
I’m not working on any interior and exhibition projects at the moment. I’m mainly developing my designs for manufacturers and my own brand. I really love the combination of designer and entrepreneur. Developing ideas, but then also managing the production, thinking about how to promote and sell the products. A good combination of creative and more pragmatic work.

Your Bautier label products are exclusively available from the brand’s website and showroom in Brussels. How important is a website for a small business? What social media do you use for your business?
The website is very important to me. And without question Instagram is the most important medium and the only one I actually use. It does seem to be a good vehicle for promotion, as this seems to be the way information spreads. But I don’t direct people to my website to find out more or order products till the end.

The durable nature of the products is a good approach for a sustainable future. The projects you presented at SaloneSatellite in 2005 and 2006 are still on the market, such as the mirror by Ligne Roset. Tell us about those products and the story of your relationship with the companies you met there.
Actually Ligne Roset has just stopped producing the mirrors. They were the first piece of mine to go into production, so a great first step in the business, helping to be taken seriously by other brands. But this was a one-off venture with Roset and did not mark the start of a collaboration between us. But I did meet Idée at the Salone, a Japanese brand I still work with today, and some products designed in 2007 are still available today. But most importantly, this has become my strongest and most successful collaboration. We’ve already produced 3 collections together and a few extra pieces. Still ongoing.

You studied in London, then you went back to Brussels. What do you like about the city? Are your projects connected to the city?
I don’t feel really attached to the city workwise. It’s my hometown, where I have my friends and family. I do love the city, as it’s lively, but neither too big neither or too small and makes for a very comfortable life. My work still draws great inspiration from my time in the UK.

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