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“For me, there has always been something else as appealing as cool architecture; I have a craving to design products, foremost lighting products.”

Mai Waelkens Through a lifetime full of travel Mai Waelkens sees inspiration for her designs all over and with an unmasterable desire to create things of beauty, Design By Mai was born.

After growing up in Ghent, Belgium and a lifetime full of travel, Mai Waelkens returned home, which she considers “a small treasure to live in”. It’s in this same town that she once studied interior design at the Sint-Lucas Institute where she received a degree in Interior Design in 2007. Following graduation, Waelkens was given the opportunity to do an internship in Capetown, South Africa where she was able to conceptualise interior designs, furniture and lamps for clients with lofts, houses, hotels and apartments. Upon returning to Belgium, she felt ready to become an independent entrepreneur. “After founding my own design company, for the next seven years I designed interiors,” Waelkens tells darc. “I wanted to be involved in every step of the process, personally coordinating each construction site myself in close collaboration with a team of