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Better Together

  • What was it like to be photographed by a world class photographer?
    M: Fantastic. It’s special to do a shoot with your best friend already, let alone with a top notch photographer. Now we have all these great photos of the two of us, it’s wonderful.

    You aren’t professional models. No nerves at all?
    M: A bit at first, but the energy was amazing so we soon got to be ourselves completely.
    J: The whole day was easy-going and good fun. Also, when you’re our age you’re less self-conscious. We just thought ‘whatever’ and went with it.
     
    Besides being Sandwich super stars, what do you do in daily life?
    M: I own a bed & breakfast in Amsterdam: 26Boven. I’m also a mom. Billie is my five-year old daughter.
    J: Together with my boyfriend I own three vintage clothing stores in Amsterdam, Marbles. I’m also a mom. Raf is six and he and Billie are just as close as we are.
     
    How did you two meet, was it ‘love’ at first sight?
    M: Our children went to the same day care center, that’s where we met.
    J: It was an instant girl crush, really.
    M: When we met it was like we had known each other for years. We naturally jumped into each other’s lives, just like that.
     
    What makes your friendship special?
    J: Humour is very important. We find each other incredibly funny. And ourselves. (Joosje chuckles). But what’s really special about our friendship is how everything just flows between us.
    M: That’s right, no fuss. We‘re completely at ease when we’re together.
    J: We both have a laissez-faire attitude. It also shows in how we raise our children. Which revolves around a lot of love, moderate control, but also playfulness and creativity.
    M: It’s all about setting clear boundaries, while also giving them lots of freedom.
    J: I want my son to believe in himself, to know that he can handle the world. I want him to feel he is free to go his own way.
    M: Billie and Raf are quite the characters. It’s funny to see they have the same energy as us.
    J: They call themselves brother and sister. Obviously, we hope they stay pals forever. We can totally imagine Raf picking up Billie on his moped for a night out in town. That is our dream, really.
  • What makes you better together?
    M: We’re very much alike, but also differ. Joosje has a strong personality, for example. I love her straightforwardness, she knows exactly what she wants.
    J: Marieke has incredible social skills.
    M: I’m a very caring person, and sometimes I find it hard to put myself first. Joosje on the other hand is really good at that.
    J: I totally admire Marieke’s warmth. Her kindness and thoughtfulness. You easily approach and connect with people. I’m more of an introvert.
    M: We complement each other and thus learn from each other. That’s the beauty of relationships, I think.
     
    What does your work mean to you?
    M: We’re both entrepreneurs, but things have always come our way somehow. I’ve worked hard, have had several fun businesses, such as a beach shop and an event styling agency, but I’ve never struggled. The things I have in mind always seem to go through. I think it has a lot to do with following your heart.
    J: I think so too. Also, we’re not focused on material things. I find other things much more important. I want to enjoy what I do, and also be good to my customers and my employees. I want our stores to have a nice atmosphere, make sure that we have a unique and affordable assortment.
    M: I want to give my B&B guests a homey feel. I put fresh flowers on the table and welcome all my guests with a bottle of wine. These little things make all the difference. It makes me happy too.
    J: We’re very close with our children and I think it’s also because we’re entrepreneurs and get to control our own time.
    M: I feel blessed we are able to spend a lot of time with our children. It’s a luxury.
     
    What does fashion mean to you?
    M: When I get up in the morning I know exactly what I feel like wearing. It’s handy, because it doesn’t take me long to get dressed.
    J: I love to experiment and create new combinations. I mix new items with vintage, for example. I like a bit of a tough look, so I do things such as combining a flowery dress with a leather jacket. It’s all about contrasts. Flowers with checkers, different materials or colours. You can do so many things.
    M: It’s important to me to look nice, but comfort is just as important to me. When it’s cold outside I want to be warm.
    J: Clothes have to be both feminine and comfortable. Otherwise I don’t wear it. I don’t wear high heels for example.
    M: I like it when people put extra effort into their look. Why always go for the same old jeans? I love my jeans too, but not every day.
     
    What is your favourite Sandwich item?
    J: Sandwich knits! Especially those long comfy cardigans you can live in. Every­one should have one of those. All you need is a good skinny and a pair of boots, and you’re good to go.
    M: I love Sandwich knits as well. Perfect for our cocooning sessions. A big piece of chocolate, a nice glass of wine and some good tunes.
    J: Nothing beats a good chat with some quality chocolate within reach.