Joy DeVieve is a collaboration between Aisha and Aya–sisters, lifelong friends and the creators of the designs you see here.
About the JoyDeVieve name…Before either of us was born, our parents found two names in a baby name book and wrote them down because they loved the meanings: Aisha means Life and Aya means Joy. We thought Joy DeVieve would be a fun play on the phrase ‘Joie de vivre,’ which means ‘The Joy of Living.’
We love making things and imagining things, and we’ve been doing both as long as we can remember. One of our earliest collaborations was home and fashion design…for dolls.
One Christmas, our parents bought us each a large wooden dollhouse, and we immediately moved our assorted crew of dolls into the homes, but they didn’t have furniture.
Thus began an ongoing game of what basically amounted to a perpetual home makeover show for those dolls.
We found inspiration everywhere–mostly garage sales–and anything that would fit in the houses and be transformed into miniature home decor was fair game. (Overstuffed pincushions make fantastic dollhouse ottomans, and you’d be surprised at how easy it is to turn a wooden pencil box into a doll-sized bed.)
Absolutely none of it matched–it was shabby chic and salvage decorating at its finest–but we (and the dolls) were extremely happy with what we were able to accomplish on our very limited (ok, pretty much non-existent) pre-adolescent budgets.
Once the basics were covered, we branched into the smaller touches–rugs, doilies, curtains–we made these types of things from fabric scraps we either sourced from garage sales or our grandmother’s house. We also put a lot of time into Christmas decorations, because it was perpetually Christmas Eve or Christmas Day in the doll neighborhood, so we wrapped and unwrapped tiny presents almost daily.
And, since there was always a Christmas Ball* on the horizon, and those dolls needed glamorous dresses, this also marked the beginning of our experiments with handmade fashion.
Armed with needles, thread, and sewing knowledge we gleaned from watching Little House on the Prairie, we made original wardrobe pieces for the dollhouse residents, as well as ‘fancy’ adjustments to some of the store-bought clothes the dolls owned. (We also dabbled in hair cutting/styling, but an unfortunate incident with doll bangs pretty much sums up why we decided to focus on fashion these days.)
All in all, it was a happy time. We learned how to have fun and stretch our imaginations while creating things together. Eventually, those dollhouses got put away, but we’ve never stopped making things together, and that’s pretty much the essence of what Joy DeVieve is all about.
Thanks for visiting!
Aisha & Aya
*We watched/read a lot of Anne of Green Gables/Louisa May Alcott/Jane Austen types of books/movies and Christmas Balls are very important events with pivotal plot points!