Colour Inspiration: Poppekins

Yay, I'm super excited to be sharing the next feature in my new Colour Inspiration blog series, an interview with colourful illustrator, Poppekins! 

I first discovered Poppekins on Instagram and I'm not ashamed to say, I completely fell in love with her illustrations as soon as I set eyes on them; the fun style, the happy vibe they always give off and the gorgeous use of bright colours really make my heart sing! I was smitten and so had to find out more about what inspires such colourful illustrations!


Hi there, can you tell all of us a little bit about yourself?

Hello, my name is Carla van der Meer, I'm Dutch and live in Faversham, Kent. I'm officially a fashion designer but since becoming a Mum 3 years ago I've been focusing on doing my colourful illustrations under the name, Poppekins. 


I absolutely love colour, so I find creating the vibrant prints and family portraits so much fun! I offer ready made prints and cards, but also custom made birth announcements, party invites, portraits or just about anything. 

My favourite things are bright colours, spring, crazy dancing, my family, red wine, Madonna, blue skies and positivity in general.


How does colour inspire your designs?

When I started Poppekins I was mainly doing nursery illustrations, so bright colours were my obvious choice (never understood the whole monochrome nursery trend).

I like honest bold colours and have created a standard Poppekins colour palette of 9 colours, which I use throughout all my illustrations as I like to keep the same overall feel and handwriting throughout the illustrations, almost as if it was a fashion collection. They're all bright fun colours, except for the brown, which might be surprising but I do like the 70s, so a brown is a must! 

When I do commissioned work I'm obviously more flexible with my colours and have even made a portrait where everyone was wearing grey! 


Why do you think colour is important?

Bright colours can just make everything feel so much better! Colour transfers a message, it can lift your mood, it can make you feel better about yourself or your surroundings, and it's more direct and more honest then words.


Where do you get your colour inspiration from?

There are lots of things I get my inspiration from, everywhere all the time! My main inspiration are my kids, living with a 3 and a 1 one year old I'm constantly surrounded by a sea of colourful toys, so there's no escaping!

Apart from that, I love the bold use of colour and print in the 70s, everything was so colourful and fun; the clothing, the interiors and all the household items, amazing. And, being born in the Netherlands, I've grown up with the books of Miffy. I adore the primary colour use and the naive design in all of Dick Bruna's work; I'd love my illustrations to stay close to his ideals.


If you had to choose one colour, what would you go for and why?

My favourite colour is tomato red, a bit friendlier then bold red, and better suited to my face then orange, although being Dutch it obviously has to be a bit orangey! I love it on clothing, both in the winter and summer, on shoes, and home decor. It's very 70s and uplifting, plus it looks great with blue and yellow, so an all round win for me. 


Thank you so much, Carla! It's been truly wonderful hearing all about how colour inspires your illustrations and how you work with it. I can't wait to see what future portraits you create!

Talking of which, guess what the lovely Carla did? A portrait of me! I couldn't believe it when I saw it. As someone who doesn't like pictures of herself (ever wondered why I show half my face on Instagram? Ha ha, now you know!), I really love this illustration, it makes me smile so much, especially with my pegboard in the background!


If you would like to get your very own illustrated portrait, then the lovely Carla is offering a super special 15% off from today until midnight on Sunday 18th February. Simply head to Carla's gorgeous shop and enter coupon code POPWEEKEND at checkout. 

I hope you've enjoyed this burst of colour inspiration and are now off to explore more of Carla's work and follow her illustrative journey on Instagram

Until my next blog post, stay colourful my lovelies!