On Online: Meet Luisa Verheijen

luisaverheijenName: Luisa Verheijen

Where you live: Janesville, WI

Area of study: First semester online Fashion Merchandising

Day job/occupation: Shoe & clothing designer, at this moment only studying, searching for a job, just like the rest.

Tell us more about your shoe line Kmillion: I accomplished my business plan, own a patent, followed the entrepreneurial course with awards for my finished business plan, designed the logo and created my slogan. I made the first prototypes by hand, found a manufacturer abroad, have the final product at home and am now searching for investors! But more than this will be finding a mentor, it’s so much to be learn in the fashion scene!

How you came up with the idea? The idea has actually been with me as long as I can remember. The first pair I “created” was in my teens. I bought two pairs of shoes at this secondhand shop — one for the upper design and the other pair for the heel and size. I took them apart when I got home and from those two pairs, I created one pair of shoes with the heel I wanted and upper design I wanted. I added stones to the material and adjusted them to my feet. Needless to say, those were my favorite pair and I took care of them like they were a treasure. I danced till dawn with those shoes! Sadly when I moved to Europe, I left them behind and my Mom probably threw them away when she moved.

Tell us why you created the interchangeable sandal:The reason for creating an interchangeable sandal is because I’ve always wanted to have a pair that I could change into a thousand different styles by just adding stones, chains, feathers, or changing colors wherever or whenever. Also being able to adjust to my feet. They would be more convenient and easy for travel by being able to take as much as possible with less baggage occupancy. Home storage would be less (say goodbye to those endless shoe boxes). I would create a storage cabinet with special pouches to hang the sandals uppers.

List three of your heroes in history: Joan of Arc, Coco Chanel and Martin Luther King.

List three of your heroes today: Cher, Madonna, Lady Gaga. My selections are “chameleon” personas who are always evolving and adapting to their surroundings — like me but not to that extreme. Well actually, if my “jungle” had been like theirs or if I had gotten the chance, I would most probably had become exactly like them.

List three of your favorite designers: Gianni Versace, Valentino and Karl Lagerfeld.

List a guilty pleasure: Watching Dexter!

Tell us about something funny or silly that happened to you this week: Someone much younger made a pass on me!

What is your dream job? To be a designer, creating a complete clothing and shoe line bearing my logo and name.

What is the most embarrassing item in your closet? Having too many clothes that I hardly wear, not to mention shoes!! I really need to “unclutter” my closet!

What is your must have item? It would be a special pair of boots (designed by me). I have the design on a piece the paper.

Where have you found inspiration lately? The “now” generation – today’s youth are very creative and do not follow styles or fashion as closely as before. They have become their own designers, creating their own personality and always on that searching mode for that unconventional fashion. The greatest inspiration is my mom, she showed me colors, combinations and so much more, also the love for my son Alex, the one who gave me strength and least but not last, the love of my life.

What is your most valued possession? My Grandmother’s photograph and my first sandal prototype.

List a person whom you would like to have coffee with: Oprah Winfrey

In September, the Beloit Daily News profiled online student Luisa Verheijen. Luisa has patented an interchangeable shoe that has a removable top so women can create multiple looks with one pair of shoes.


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