An Interview With ...
Influencer, Bodo Breg
Personal Stylist to the good and great of Amsterdam and Canal House Ambassador, Bodo Breg shares his personal insights on this wonderful city ...
Bodo Breg with journalist and personal muse, Merel Laseur.
Bodo, tell us a bit about you and what you do for a living ...
I have my own styling company (www.bodobreg.com), which consists of 4 divisions: personal, event, interior and stage styling - from wardrobe management, houses and restaurants to weddings and theatre costumes. I'm also one of the regular contributors of Blauw Bloed, a National Royalty TV show, which focuses on the crowned heads of the world. I'm a very grateful man to be doing what I love and covering such a wide range of areas. Every day is different and exciting, which keeps me challenged, focused and inspired.
Do you have a fashion muse or icon?
One of my heroines is Merel Laseur, a true dame. At an age where most people seem to take it down a bit, she's always impeccably dressed and groomed and, more importantly, she wears life as it should be worn - witty, elegant, curious, open-minded and always up for adventure! She's an example to many.
Another is Daphne Guinness, fashion designer, model, art collector and, not unlikely myself, an Haute Couture addict. I find her eccentric, unique and personal style, executed on the highest level, and her intricate eye for perfection immensely inspiring.
Best place for fashionistas seeking inspiration?
Craftsmanship always inspires me. I, therefore, love documentaries on Houses such as Lesage or Hermès, which are often shown at Eye.
You dress women for all sorts of events, where would you shop for ...
A night out on the town:
Salon Heleen Hulsmann, a luxury, vintage salon which has an ever amazing collection consisting of the best brands in the business. Heleen has a keen eye for what works and will tell you if it doesn't, which I find almost as important...
Dinner date with friends:
X Bank, a concept store that offers solely Dutch designers. From high street to high fashion, from luxury basics to conceptual wearable art, they've got it all.
Femme, located in the not-so-glamorous Kinkerstraat, boasts an amazing collection of red carpet worthy gowns.
Any hidden gems for fashion finds?
Laura Dols remains to be my favourite vintage store in town. It’s a bit like Aladdin’s cave, packed with amazing dresses, shoes, bags, costume jewellery and I don't think I have ever left without buying something.
Favourite local designer(s)?
Edwin Oudshoorn is a highly talented, Amsterdam based designer who creates the most amazing couture. Everything he makes oozes femininity, craftsmanship and true magic.
Best neighbourhood to have a wander around the shops?
One of the best things about Amsterdam is the proximity of it all. So, hop on a bike and follow me on a random shopping trip to a few of my favourite stores...
• Droog, Dutch design at its best and a great place for lunch
• Lyppens, antique jewellery and silverware
• Hans Appenzeller, across the street from Lyppens, one of Holland’s best, contemporary jewellery designers
• Neef Louis, in upcoming area Noord, for great vintage and retro interior stuff
• Mendo, best bookstore in town
• Laundry Industry, luxury basics and one of Amsterdam’s best local brands
• Extreme Cashmere, by appointment only, but you'll be in cashmere heaven
• Giftshop Stedelijk Museum, you'll find the perfect gift here for anyone
• de Looier, a great place for antique and vintage treasures
• de Hallen, watch a movie, visit local designers, enjoy great street food
• de Droomfabriek, the place for costume jewellery and fabulous knickknacks
Top restaurant recommendation?
Last year I was asked to create a restaurant for friends, which resulted in Auberge Jean & Marie and its one of my favourite places since it opened. You can just enjoy a glass of wine from their extensive cave (they serve up to 70 wines by the glass), but please indulge and explore the heavenly French food. Whether you ask the Chef to surprise you or you make your own selection, every bite is sublime!
If you had 24 hours in Amsterdam, what would make your must-do list?
I love the city at the break of dawn, so I'd start with an early morning stroll along the misty canals or park. Then a quick coffee at de Koffiesalon at the Utrechtsestraat before continuing onto the Botanical Gardens to see the flowers in bloom. Stop for breakfast at Gartine for homemade deliciousness. Then I'd cycle to the Rijksmuseum to check out my favourite installation by Studio Drift, Shylight, a must see. Under the arches of the Rijksmuseum I'd enjoy my favourite musicians playing the Arrival of the Queen of Sheba by my beloved composer Händel. Then off to the Skins Spa at Hotel de L'Europe for an excellent massage.
For lunch, I'd enjoy the amazing fruits des mer at Brut de Mer, then to the Concertgebouw for an afternoon concert. Tea at Pompadour, tiny but filled with sinful, delicious chocolates and pastries. A quick browse through the latest classical releases at my favourite music store, Concerto, then off to the ferry to the Adam Toren. From the 23rd floor, you've got a stunning view over the city and it’s the perfect spot to see the sun set.
Then a light supper and a glass of fine wine at Auberge Jean & Marie, before heading to the Nationale Opera en Ballet, which was voted best Opera House in the World last year. To finish the day, I'd snuggle up by the fire at The Lobby, before hitting my bed at Canal House in my favorite room 2.