THERE aren’t many people in Port Elizabeth who go only by one name, but menswear designer Heinz Schmidt gets away with it as the larger-than-life designer who founded Heinz in Style outfitters in Newton Park more than 20 years ago.
Although he knew from the age of five that he wanted to be in the fashion industry, his father steered him into a technical direction and Heinz qualified as a mechanic before turning those talented hands in the direction of fabric.
He joined La Femme for a California croissant and espresso at Raak in Newton Park, topped with owner Wehrner Lemmer’s extra-spicy sauce.
I picked Raak because it’s close to my business, a favourite brunch spot, it always has fresh ingredients and great staff. You know they are sharp when you get seated at your table and your favourite drink arrives simultaneously. They have great daily specials too. At night I love Mangiamo in Walmer and also Two Olives in Stanley Street, where you can chill and look over the ocean via the city.
I love my career as a stylist because I meet a variety of people, I get to be creative and make people feel good. I work with people’s fantasies and it’s very rewarding to see them happy and confident because their dreams have been exceeded.
I’ll know I’ve made it when I have achieved a lot of my goals, I own the property where my business is located, and Heinz has been in business for nearly 22 years.
The person who has taught me the most is personal: Dad and Mom, business: Dad, Niels and Geoff who I worked with for four years before I started Heinz.
I have a soft spot for all those whose wings have been broken by life, it touches my heart. It’s very rewarding to make a difference in the life of one person or animal, paying forward my good fortune.
I should have studied psychology, because I love to hear and “see” the thought processes of people, their actions and reactions.
I’d love to party with close friends with whom I’m comfortable and who are not intimidated by my over-exuberant personality.
I’m listening to world music, Afrikaans music and I enjoy South African music in general.
When I was 16, I wish I knew Bjorn Borg, the tennis player, and Morne du Plessis, the rugby eighth man.
Nothing makes me happier than sitting on our “outydse agterstoep” with my wife, chatting about life, enjoying the tranquillity of our garden, water features and light filtering through the trees.
My favourite item of clothing is a good pair of jeans, jewellery, and Mont Blanc bracelet.
I don’t like pretentious people and those who talk down to you because they feel they are better than you. We all have feet of clay and walk in dust.
I am saving to buy my wife a Harley Davidson. Personally, I am satisfied, happy and thankful for what I have and own.
I share my life with my wife, Natania, who is also my business partner, two grey ring-neck parrots and beautiful koi fish.
I can’t go a day without my cellphone I suppose, or an awesomely smooth double espresso.
My favourite places in the metro are the vibe of Stanley Street, Central area, beachfront. The Donkin area with its view and beautiful artwork, Boardwalk Hotel, just sitting on the terrace overlooking the big blue dam on a clear day.
I am addicted to chocolate, biltong and well-presented food, as you eat firstly with your eyes.