In Dietje’s formative years, her artistic uncle pushed her in the direction of gold and silversmithing college in Schoonhoven, The Netherlands. She attended this college for three years, followed by two years of apprenticeship in Vancouver, British Columbia.
After her apprenticeship, Dietje planned to return to the Netherlands, but instead she decided to stay in Canada because of the plentiful job opportunities, the inspiring goldsmith’s community, and the freedom that Canada had to offer. She felt it was possible to make her mark here without all the obstacles. Dietje worked for several jewellers in Vancouver, including The Swedish Jeweller, Ragnar Jewellers, Gold and Silversmiths in Gastown and later Brinkhaus Jewellers.
In 1980, Dietje struck out on her own and worked out of her home in West Vancouver, a few years later she moved into her own studio in downtown Vancouver. In 1990, Dietje opened Forge & Form, a retail shop/studio on Granville Island. In 2009, Dietje moved to the Columbia Valley and has worked from her home studio there to date.
Dietje pulls her inspiration from European design and incorporates it into her own style, creating original designs.