Monday 14 July 2014

Simoni's world of Textile Designs produced in Cyprus

Dear Reader,

Simoni is a 27 years old Cypriot Girl living her dream. She always wanted to do this in her life and she never stopped following her path. After her graduation at the Textile Designs in Middlesex University U.K., she choose to return to Cyprus and starting her own business in 2010. She did not felt overwhelmed by the difficulties of being your own boss, living with a fluctuating income, finding customers, as she just knew that nothing can stop her living her dream, producing unique beautiful hand-bags, shawls, capes, earrings, brooches and rings using her own designed fabrics all Made in Cyprus at Simoni Textile Designs.

Izzy: Dear Simoni, Thank you very much for this opportunity that you gave to me and my readers to find out about your beautiful life experience of producing in Cyprus. You are young and beautiful and very determined! What made you choose this path? What experiences you had in your life that brought you doing what you do?
Simoni Papaefstathiou: I always loved the idea of creating something with my own hands. I love colors and when I took a Foundation Course at Aigaia School of Art and Design – around 19 years old - I realized that textile designs was suitable for me because it included all the things I love: colors, textures and making something unique, from scratch.


Izzy: How did you end up opening your own business? Looking back at your beginnings you believe it was difficult? There was anybody next to you helping you going forward?
S.P: After graduating from university I wanted to create my own brand so I could produce my own hand-woven accessories. In 2010 I succeed making my own brand Simoni Textile Design and with the help of my parents I bought my first loom, which costs more then 9000 euro, to help me start the production. At the beginning it was difficult because it always is when you start something new, but my family was there to support me and to make my dream come true as it still is.

Izzy: What can you tell us about producing your own fabrics? From where do you find your inspiration and how come you had this idea?
S.P.: There is a long process before the final pieces are made.
First I choose a theme, which is my inspiration for each collection. I get inspired from anything around me, and I am always observing for new ideas. I love colors and textures so most of my collections are colorful and textural. I love paying attention to detail, so each collection has a unique feel. Nature is one of my first choice when I am looking for inspiration and Cyprus landscape with it's colors and beauty will always be close to my heart.
I also use lots of traditional patterns to which I like to add little drops of modernism. Cypriot traditions are close to me, as it remind me of my childhood time spend with my grandparents.
After that, I choose the threads I want to use and start making some samples and I choose which are my favorites and I make them into my final pieces. In the mid-time I also design the accessories too and choose what shapes the hand-bags will have.

Izzy: I find a very difficult choice to sell hand-bags as the entire market is just suffocated buy cheap brands produced in various other countries. Is it difficult to sell now in these days? What innovation do you bring to the Cypriot market trough your products?
S.P.: Is difficult to sell, but my brand aims to give to its costumers a piece which is one of a kind. People who want to buy something unique will choose a hand-made product, that can not easily be found in the market because of it's quality, it's material composition and special design... made entirely with love and passion.

Izzy:Can you introduce us your most successful designs and which one is your favorite?
S.P.: Backpack is one of the most successful designs at the moment and it my favorite as well as it is useful for everyday use. You can fit a lot of things inside and it brings some color to your everyday life.

Izzy: Do you believe that Cypriot people should learn more about the products produced it Cyprus and try to promote and prefer them before other products made in other countries?
S.P.: Yes I think Cypriot people should learn more about the products produced in Cyprus and learn to appreciate them more. We should all learn to support each other and promote the Cypriot products because they show a piece of our culture.

Izzy: Dear Simoni, you are very young and despite this you are a person that knows how to take decision in her life. What advise would you give to other youngsters finding themselves at a crossroad in their life? Is it possible to produce in Cyprus? What are your plans for the future?
S.P.:You should always follow your dreams and never give up on what you want to achieve. Beginnings are always hard, but if you try hard enough, at some point you will see your dreams starting to come true.
It is possible to produce in Cyprus but you need to be determined to work hard for it without having a lot of help and sources around you.
In the future I would like to take part in trade-shows abroad and expand my brand in other countries.

Izzy: Thank you again for this opportunity and we wish you lots of success and happiness but before ending this short interview I would like to ask you to write us one thought about your success story.
S.P.: I used to play so many times around my grandmother while she was knitting lovely dresses for us the kids. I was looking at her yarn balls, at the colors, spending hours dreaming with my eyes open. She gave me the pleasure to use my hands, to build something out of nothing, to combine colors, to have the pride that I did something on my own. Maybe I did not realized the impact that I will feel over the years but getting back in time to those cherished moments I feel like I was leaving a dream. I would like to thank to her and to my parents who helped me and were close to me when I need the most.


Lots of sunny days from Izzy the Cypriot Lizard!

Simoni Textile Designs

Address: 83, Andrea Avraamides street, 2024, Nicosia, Cyprus
Phone no: 00 357 99 55 99 63
Contact person: Simoni Papaefstathiou


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