For the past few months, a new place in town has made our creativity and well-being its drive and purpose: The Beehive is a new DIY place where its founder Khalida will nicely guide you through your projects and teach you how to best express your ideas for example with a sewing machine and colourful textiles.
During the summer, she offered a “green workshop” which nicely buzzed in the ear of OUTSIDE THE BOX: obviously we had to ask her a few questions.
The first question is quite straight-forward: can you please tell us who you are and what makes you happy in life?
My name is Khalida. I am 37 and I am the mum of three great kids (4 ½, 3 and 18-months old). I was born in Morocco and I grew up in a family of 5 children in the centre of France. I then moved to Paris to work as a head-hunter. When I got pregnant with my first child, my husband and I decided to move away from the capital: it was impossible for us to imagine raising a child there. So we moved to Switzerland and settled down in Zug, which is a much nicer place to live and raise a family.
What makes me happy today? A great big breakfast eaten in peace and quiet…
Tell us more about The Beehive: when and how did you make the jump to open your own atelier?
I have always been a creative person. I started to sew when I was 15. Then, in the past few years I started to refurbish and give a new life to old fauteuils and other furniture. I wanted to share this passion with other women and welcome them in a heartful place.
It is really fulfilling, because it allows me to enjoy social interactions again while sharing what I love to do. This social life is probably the most important one for me to work on and to develop, especially as a mum of 3: it is unfortunately too easy to feel isolated in such a family environment.
How does it feel to start your own business?
It has been such a big change for me. I continuously need to find the right balance between my life as a mother and a woman, and the need to keep this feeling of guilt under control. Mothers always want to manage it all, somehow, and this guilt pops once in a while…
I think I am not so well-organized, I tend to do everything on my own… The Beehive opened in April 2018, so all is still very new to me and I still have much to learn as an entrepreneur…and surely this is only the beginning.
What workshops do you organize, and why is it important to you to do these sessions?
All the workshops I organize deal with creativity, for instance creating with all possible materials one could think of: concrete, wood, textile, clay, ropes, branches, stones, leather, plastic waste…for example you can use old clothing items, like jean for instance, to create something new.
What is the most important to me is to help the women that come and visit me at The Beehive open their mind and their eyes.
I love teaching them how to see beauty in all the things around us. It is possible to create very beautiful things with branches and stones for example.
Another important point, I want to give these women a parenthesis in their life, a space in which they can think and care of themselves. Creation has amazing therapeutic powers. I love to see these women come, talk about their daily lives, their troubles, their moments of joy. I love to hear them laugh, to see them enjoy themselves and go back home with fully-recharged batteries.
During the summer one of your hit workshops was the “green one”: can you tell us more about it, and why you think it’s important? What did you create during these sessions?
I really liked organizing this workshop, because it also carried an important environmentally-friendly dimension. The purpose was to create and replace what can be trashed by what can be re-used, with 3 possible creative projects.
Participants made for example lids made from African wax to cover dishes and keep them fresh (instead of using plastic film or aluminium fold). They could also make nets to weight and carry fruits and vegetables, perfect to replace plastic bags. They also learned how to prepare their own make-up removal wipes using old baby towels, biological coconut oil, essential oils and baby soap (to prevent your eyes from stinging!). This workshop worked well, so it will now be on the planning each month.
What is your own definition of “green”, or sustainability, and what do you do daily to apply this definition?
I think we can be “green” in all our daily actions: not wasting water, avoiding what can be discarded (plastic bag, aluminium…), not buying too much…I try to be as eco-friendly as possible but I admit, sometimes I feel I cannot do much more…for example I did not feel like using washable nappies for my kids, I found it too difficult to manage with so many butts to clean and change everyday.
There is a lot of recycling or re-use going on in your workshops, tell us more!
What I love especially is to give things a new life, whether we talk about furniture or waste from our daily routines. At The Beehive, we use a lot of plastic waste or tin cans. For example, plastic packaging for vegetables or the mascarpone boxes are excellent containers for paint, or to mould concrete and create lovely candles or little bowls. When I am done I rinse my brushes in plastic packaging. My husband is quite happy about it: he does not have to go to the recycling station as often as before…
Anything else you’d like to share about you, your story, your experience, etc…?
I have a message to share specifically with mothers. It’s about my own personal experience. I realized that I am a much better mum now that I take care of myself and of my soul. Being a mum is the most beautiful thing in the world but it is also the one we pay a big price for. It is still taboo to say that becoming a mother is a very hard thing. We should not be afraid to say it loud and to be selfish occasionally.
It does not remove any of the love we give our kids. I even think that it generates an even stronger bond when this love is not polluted by these frustrations.
Discover TheBeehive and join a workshop:
- Website: www.the-beehive.ch
- Instagram: @the_beehive_zug
- Facebook: @thebeehiveatelierzug