Describe yourself, your background and what you do today.
I was born at the seaside, in Oostduinkerke, and came to Brussels to study socio-cultural work and law. Fourteen years later, I’m still here. I started working at Underwear – a lingerie shop on rue Antoine Dansaertstraat – in 2008 as a student and kept working there after I graduated simply because I love it. Together with Geertje Milis and my sister Tine Prophete, we try to make every woman feel confident about her body. Buying lingerie or swimwear shouldn’t be a struggle; it can be a nice moment. The three of us form a dream team. Besides that, I do a lot of sport. I started when I was diagnosed with Bechterew’s disease and I got so hooked that I want to become a personal trainer myself.
How has Brussels shaped you as an individual as well as your professional activities?
To me, Brussels is a big village with the benefits of a big city. Everybody knows each other but you have the freedom to be yourself and grow as an individual. In a village, everyone plays a specific role: you have the doctor, the bartender, the butcher, etc. In the centre of Brussels you have that too. My role is the lingerie salesgirl. I think I know the breast size of 50% of the female population in Brussels. Brussels is my home. You have to learn how to love it, but once it’s in your heart it’s not easy to let it go.
I like to wear high heels and it’s more comfortable on a bike than walking around.
What do you like the most about Brussels?
- My shop Underwear
- The laidback mentality: it’s not hip or trendy, there’s no dress code, hotspots and it’s not Pinterest-perfect. You can just be yourself, do your own thing and I like it like that.
- Being anonymous: as I said, Brussels is a small village and everybody knows each other. However, it is really easy to disappear and walk around Brussels anonymously.
- Go to the other side of Brussels and you’ll feel a completely different atmosphere. You can keep on discovering pretty and interesting places every day. Get on your bike; you’ll be surprised where you end up.
List three deciding factors that converted you to bicycle use.
- I used to go everywhere with the bike when I lived at the seaside, so it was naturally that I took it with me in Brussels. But it wasn’t the same. You have to learn to ride in a completely different way. After I had a few crashes, it took me a while to get back on my bike, but I did and I’m happy about it. It makes me feel free.
- Public transport doesn’t cover all areas in Brussels.
- I like to wear high heels and it’s more comfortable on a bike than walking around.
What are your favourite bike routes in Brussels?
I like riding along the canal from Anderlecht to Halle. It’s a good bike lane and so nice to ride there just to free your mind after a busy day or on a day off. I also ride to work every day, but we need more cycling paths in the city centre to make it safer.dunderwear.com