Tuesday 2nd September 2014

Elisabeth Koch

Elisabeth Koch, Beijing based Milliner shares with us an insight into her life and mind…

What do you do and how did you end up doing it? I design and create hats & headpieces. After working in the financial sector for over 5 years, I realized I only wanted to make hats! I quit my job at the bank in Brussels, took a course in Millinery in the UK and moved to China to start my business!

What are you working on at the moment? I just finished a huge project with InterContinental Hotels in Sanya where Hu Bing & Shi YanFei wore my hats, Now I have a huge bridal event in Beijing coming up.

What makes you happy? Seeing people wear wonderful hats & headpieces. And my family of course.

What gets you out of bed in the morning? My kids! Too early…

If you could live anywhere, where would it be? I can live anywhere and I choose Beijing.

What’s your favorite place in Beijing? My studio, it’s not quite finished yet, but its like my own private playroom. It’s peaceful and happy.

What annoys you? The firewall in China.

What inspires you? Animals, people, living things.

What are your current obsessions? At the moment it’s tulle.

What would you eat for your last meal? Ha, interesting question. I’ve done tones of interviews and this is a first. Something sweet as I love sweets; maybe pecan pie as I’m from the Southern part of the USA (Georgia) or pumpkin pie, or carrot cake with frosting. So good….

What makes you laugh? Definitely my kids. My daughter is  almost 3 and she puts everything on her head as a hat and says the funniest things. She loves anything with “sparkles”. My son is almost 1 and is about to walk so he makes funny movements and “dances” sitting down.

What is the most exciting thing that has happened to you? Having my hats published in hundreds of magazines, newspapers, on-line, TV-shows, radio shows, fashion shows, it’s so great.

Who are your favorite artists/designers at the moment? I love Maison Martin Margiela and Comme de Garcons always has interesting stuff.

What’s on your bedside table? Another interesting question: a digital clock that displays the time on the ceiling if I push the button, a glass of water on some Portuguese tiles, my “feve” – a tiny porcelain figure that I got in the annual family Galette du Rois (type of French tart) in Florida over Christmas and a lamp.

What can we expect from you next? More fabulous, eye-catching head adornments of course. I’m always exploring new types of materials.

What is the most glamorous part of your job? Parties, the end of catwalk shows. [unglamorous? doing all the admin, website…]

And finally if you were animal, what would you be and why? A dolphin or whale as I have loved them since I can remember. I adopted them every year when I was little.

To see more of Elisabeth’s beautiful creations go to her website! 


Elisabeth Koch wearing one of her own designs.

[Photography for Feature Images and group shot by: Hadar Pitchon]

[photos of Anne Koch by Jordan Doner for Grey Area]

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