Hennali is an initiative by Carli Kooper. Hennali comes from my name Carli. My first encounter with henna was during a journey to India, where I got a beautiful henna artwork. Once I returned to the Netherlands I started practicing with henna for myself. I wanted to learn how I could decorate myself and others so beautifully. In addition, I began oriental dancing, a wonderful way to feel my body and experience its strength, sensuality and beauty. When I dance and decorate my body with henna, I feel joy and contentment.
At this moment Carli does not work for Hennali anymore and since 2 May 2016 Hennali is taken over by Jordana Basjes. Jordana is a teacher in training and lives in a unique former monastery building in Leiden. There she hosts henna workshops and for the henna children’s birthday parties she travels all over the country.
Inspiration for Hennali
Carli: I started Hennali because I would like to contribute to a world in which women (and men!) feel beautiful, strong, and content with themselves. A henna artwork is a means to give special attention to a specific part of yourself. By making henna artworks I hope to inspire women to experience the beauty and strength in themselves, to enjoy themselves and life in all its diversity.
As a henna artist I draw inspiration from all corners of the world and in doing so create my own style. Hereby, I do not necessarily draw from the meaning that traditions and religions ascribe to certain forms in henna art. For example, a peacock is traditionally a symbol of beauty and a paisley one of fertility. For me, all forms represent a value in itself and everyone can ascribe their own meaning to certain patterns themselves.
Jordana: My first encounter with henna was when I was 18 years old. I already loved drawing and my Turkish friend asked me to make a henna artwork for her. When making my first henna artwork, I was immediately hooked! I started practicing a lot and started making henna art on weekend markets. Soon I wanted to take it a step further. That was the moment when I found out that Carli was looking for someone to take over Hennali.
I’m very happy now that I’m able now to work in something that I really love doing and that I can work with henna almost every day. I’m proud to be the new owner of Hennali!
WomenACT: Advocacy – Connection – Transformation
Hennali originated from WomenACT: Advocacy – Connection – Transformation, Carli’s company. WomenACT advocates women’s interests, by connecting people to ideas and sustainable products that take feminine core values as a starting point. Henna art fits perfectly into this ideology. Henna artworks are a tribute to the (female) body. Henna brings people together. Regardless of cultural background, henna artworks mesmerize and are always considered beautiful. Decorations are made with great attention and care for each other, and are an hour-long social event. Also, the henna and almost all other products of Hennali are organic and fair trade, in order to decrease the environmental impact as much as possible. Nowadays Hennali: Art of Henna is an independent company and run by Jordana.
Welcome to Hennali!
Jordana Basjes & Carli Kooper