meet Leni, colleague and inspiration behind our shoulder bag
Meet Leni, our finance & production manager. In addition, Leni works and teaches as a therapist. Her speciality in psychology is an excellent asset while listening and helping clients or team members.
Combining different jobs and being a mom of three teenagers and two funky dogs, Leni is always on the move. Listening to Leni's needs for a bag, Lies designed a crossbody laptop bag large enough for her dynamic life. The wide shoulder strap makes it perfect for those who prefer a hands-free commute.
Why is the Leni bag the perfect accessory?
I always carry a lot with me (laughs). For the bookkeeping at Lies Mertens, my bag is always full. And when I teach in Antwerp or Ghent, I have my files to provide training. Moreover, I do everything by public transport and by bicycle, so I want a bag that does not fall off my shoulder. This is why the wide band crossover system works perfectly for me.
You used to be the store representative. What advice do you give people when purchasing a Lies Mertens bag?
I look at the characteristics of the person. What are their habits? Does this person wear a lot or little colour? Does this person have many or few bags? I try to listen to what this person is looking for, and often you see this too. You notice right away whether someone is happy with a bag or not. So my ultimate advice would be, what bag makes you feel good? When do you see a sparkle in their eyes?
Within Lies Mertens, you are known as the 'master of everything', which is also reflected in your home. For example, the wooden wall in the hall to your practice room is entirely homemade. Have you always been a jack of all trades?
For a long time, I struggled with that image. How can I define myself? Is what I do in life what captures me? Who am I? I spent hours studying, reading books, and following training and therapies to find an answer to that question. But the answer came when I stopped looking and turned home, turned inwards to the landscape of my feelings, emotions and memories. I learned to accept everything that comes to the surface, the exciting and beautiful feelings and the hidden parts, the ugly and dark images. So now I see the beauty of all these passions. They make me who I am. I find joy in combining all these different colours of me. One is designing and playing with materials and colours, and one is guiding people to welcome everything that wants to surface. To welcome it as it is, without judgment, without trying to change or adjust it. To accept it, all of it!