Wary of Mixing Your Passion With Business? LeMuse’s Founder Shows How It’s Done

Lina Karaliene had a decision to make: play it safe working for others or take the plunge and pursue her true passion. She chose the latter and has never looked back! Mixing work and pleasure can sometimes be a risk – but as Lina shows, with patience, perseverance, and the right team around you, the sky is the limit.

Hello! Perhaps you could introduce yourself?

Hi! I’m Lina and for more than 10 years I worked in various advertising agencies: Saatchi&Saatchi, Ogilvy, TBWA, among others – I’ve always been very passionate about branding, marketing, and advertising. 

A while back, a few colleagues and I decided to leave the agencies behind and take matters into our own hands –  we created a startup. It was a ‘how-to’ video platform and although we all worked really hard at it, it didn’t quite work out. 

I was left with a tough decision: play it safe and go back to agency life, or try again to start something from scratch.  I chose to trust my instincts and follow my passion and my essence, and I’ve never looked back!  

When I was a child, I loved to style and create clothing. My grandmother was working in a national clothing design fashion house at the time, so I had the opportunity to learn how to design and create clothing as I grew up. With this knowledge and background, as well as my experience in marketing and branding, it made sense to start a clothing brand. And so LeMuse was born. LeMuse is now 10 years old and well-known in Lithuania and abroad. 

My business has been my full-time occupation ever since. LeMuse has a very strong and passionate team as well!

LeMuse 2

Tell us more about your business.

LeMuse is the culmination of all my passion and skills in the clothing industry – we design and produce clothing for women. LeMuse means muse – we believe that every woman is a muse and we only need the possibility to express ourselves and show our inner muses to the world. For us, this means comfortable and elegant LeMuse clothing.

The original idea for the clothing came from the fabric available – it made sense to create natural-looking models that have only a few cuts. The result is clothing that flows and changes shape with movement.

Today, we sell more than 90% of our products online. LeMuse clothing can be found in many different countries.

What does your business look like today?

The LeMuse clothing brand has changed a lot over the years! In the first year, we had a small corner in a designer store. Now, we run a LeMuse brand store right in the heart of Vilnius while still selling more than 90% of all production online. To get on this path we had to try working with wholesale and then come back to the end consumer.

The LeMuse brand is growing very slowly – We know that and we understand that we, as a team, are not big risk-takers. We prefer to grow slowly and with stability, and spend time enjoying the working process.

Today LeMuse has a team of 5 inhouse people and many people others around us.

What are you working on at the moment? What are your future plans?

At the moment we are working a lot with SEO while trying to introduce LeMuse for women in Australia, New Zealand, the UK, and the USA.

What are your biggest challenges? What motivates you?

Making my business as successful as it can be is the main motive. I really enjoy experimenting and looking for new ways to achieve this – life has become very interesting!  I feel like I’m learning and improving each and every day.

LeMuse dress

What is the best business advice you can share with others?

Always test out your ideas, no matter how far-fetched they could sometimes seem. You never know what’s going to work in the end!

Could you recommend any books, movies, podcasts, or learning materials?

My favorite author is Malcolm Gladwell. Favorite books by this author: Tipping point, Blink, David and Goliath, What the Dog Saw, Outliers.

Other favorite books:
Mihaly Csikszentmihaly: FLOW
Susan Cain: Silence
Brené Brown: Dare to lead, The power of vulnerability.

JSC "LeMuse LT"

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