Brigitte de Villiers

Hit the Spot | Email

Where and what did you study and what year did you graduate?
Bachelor of Science (Environmental and Geographical Science), 1994, University of Cape Town.
Graduate Diploma Information Systems, 2000, University of Tasmania.

Where did you head after graduating?
I moved to England worked with a small team organising major horticultural flower shows including the Chelsea Flower Show. Later I worked as an application developer and a web designer.

When did you launch your own business?
In 2004.

What motivated you to start your own business?
I’ve always had a yearning to build my own business. My parents had several businesses while I was growing up from a printing press, a flower farm and a restaurant so perhaps that’s where the original motivation came from.

How would you describe your business to someone who didn’t know you?
I produce a range of finely crafted greeting cards aimed at people who love quality stationery and appreciate the personal touch.

How would you describe the products you design to someone who hadn’t seen them?
I call the cards ‘tailored gift cards’ as each is individually crafted on my sewing machine. The paper is all acid free and my designs feature vibrant colours and concepts that appeal to young and old.

What are the most challenging parts of being a designer running a small business?
By far the greatest challenge is in finding time to fill orders, come up with new designs and do all the administrative stuff.

What inspires your design projects?
Initially the label concept for the cards was inspired by the red fashion tab on my favourite cardigan. Since then inspiration for new designs comes from anywhere, anything and any time.

What are the next steps for you?
I plan to expand to screenprinted kitchen linen, gift wrap and other stationery lines. Within five years, I intend Hit the Spot to be an internationally established brand of homewares and stationery, and to be in a strong enough financial position to be able to make a positive contribution to the Tasmanian community.

Published 15 July 2008.

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