Home for holidays after dream year
Former Margaret River pastry worker turned international model Lillian Van Der Veen has spent her first Christmas back in the region since her career took off.
The visit coincides with a whirlwind year for the model, who also celebrated her first year of marriage to high-school sweetheart Bruce Dykstra.
The pair were hitched in an idyllic ceremony in Victoria in March and they then spent the remainder of the year traversing Europe between Van Der Veen’s jobs.
Van Der Veen, one of Chadwick Models’ fastest-rising faces on the international circuit, said she was still experiencing butterflies from the nuptials.
“The wedding was lovely,” she said. “We kept it very small and relaxed, and it was just such a perfect day.
“Nothing has changed since we got married, but I will say that it was a pretty amazing first year of marriage.
“We got to travel the world together, so I really couldn’t have asked for a better year with so much quality time.”
After shooting campaigns locally for Myer, Supre, Dotti and Maurice Meade, Van Der Veen has been based in London while working for top high-street brands such as Oasis and Next.
Her clients have flown her to hotspots such as Marseilles, Majorca and Sardinia — a far cry from her past life as pastry chef at the Margaret River Bakery.
“I couldn’t ever have imagined this is where my career would go,” the 24-year-old said.
“It’s a completely different lifestyle in London, it’s so busy and bus- tling, but the beaches in Europe just don’t compare to WA.”
Van Der Veen returned home to the region for the holidays and has been enjoying quality time with her family and friends.
And of course, she returned to her former workplace.
“I went to the bakery one day last week,” Van Der Veen said. “The staff are all so friendly, and there are some still that remain from when I worked there. It feels really therapeutic going back. My favourite thing to order from the menu is the Canadian French toast.”
Lillian Van Der Veen is one of Chadwick Models’ fastest-rising faces on the international circuit.