I am Hélène van der Laag, owner and creative force behind Art Studio Helene. I live in the Netherlands near the Hague with my husband (writer) in a stylish 30’s appartment.

Surface pattern design is my passion. As a licensed artist, creating beautiful visual designs that end up on daily used items is so rewarding. And being creative with paint, pencils or any kind of medium and to experiment with it is just the best! It is who I am and why I am here.

If you like what you see and what you read and you are looking for an artist for your commission, then please feel free to contact me. I would be thrilled to help you.

How I work

My design process starts with a drawing with a pencil or with a painting, mainly in watercolour or gouache. Sometimes I create with the blub brush in Illustrator.

Then I digitise these in Adobe Illustrator of Photoshop and start arranging them into patterns. Checking all the time that the repeat tile isn’t obvious and the result is calm to eye.

Art Studio Helene’s work isn’t driven by trends, though I am influenced by them. I am specialised in:
  •  (half drop) patterns
  • prints
  • handdrawn or painted artwork
  • designing collections consisting out of a ‘hero’ print and coordinates
  • creating different colourways
My work is suitable for the markets:
  • apperal
  • home textiles
  • walllpaper
  • upholstery
  • stationery

My surface pattern design road

I have always been creative. In school Drawing was a subject I graduated in. But it wasn’t after I lost my job for the second time that I started my journey on the surface design path.

I had been wondering what it was that made my heart sing and one day I saw the add of Textilice about surface pattern design. Then the pieces of the puzzle  fell into place. All my talents and capabiliaties come together in this.

It began with couple of private lessons in Illustrator and pattern making. I had to learn from scratch.

After that I had a PatternObserver membership. Lots of challenges, feedback and a great community supported my growth as a designer.

In the fall of 2016 there was a trade show in Brussels. I wanted to look for an agent. Via PatternObserver I connected to a fellow designer in the Netherlands. She wanted to accompany me to and in Brussels.

I created my first portfolio guided by Bonnie Christine and off we went. We learned a lot and contacted agent Carin Janssen of DutchDazzle at the show. She took us under her wing.
My first pattern ever



  • Two sales on Patternbank
  • several sales of my Bird on a branche design and Andalucian tile design at Spoonflower


  • One sale on Patternbank
  • several sales of my Bird on a branche design and Andalucian tile design at Spoonflower


  • Sale of a premium design on Patternbank
  • BBChum bought two of my prints
  • my agent sold two of my designs at Heimtex


Other interests

My garden

Besides being a designer I have other interests and hobbies ofcourse.

My main hobby is my rented vegetable garden. I love spending time here. Whether it is working hard or just relaxing. I get inspired here a lot. Nature and art do that to me. 


Textile museum Tilburg

So another love of mine is art. Museums, exhibits, art galleries, I often visit them. I really think my soul needs this.

Let me tell you about the little Red Robin you see in your browser:

This bird has been showing up in my life to affirm that I am on the right way as a surface pattern designer. Right at the start when I saw the ad of Textilice, as the icon on the entrance mat of the exhibition in Brussels, the collab with BBChum. It is amazing, I can tell you. 

So I had to find a way to incorporate it in my logo.