The pandemic has been a tough time for many businesses, however undoubtedly one of the more positive things to come out of this past year is the opportunity for businesses and entrepreneurs to innovate and create in response to the situation. Born right here in the UAE, homegrown label Lili Blanc is one of those success stories, and its debut collection Hope offers the modern-day woman an impressive array of wardrobe staples that transition effortlessly from day-to-night.
Designed to seamlessly adapt to our existing wardrobe, pieces are designed to be worn both head-to-toe or mixed and matched with other styles from the collection, and comprises an initial 19 looks that are both practical and stylish. Think relaxed linen suits and jersey dresses to essential button-down shirts, trench dresses and crop tops, complete with floaty skirts and pleated shorts, everything is created using natural materials carefully sourced from Italy to Japan, in a relaxed colour palette of breezy blues, every day neutrals, olive green and iconic black.
Here, MOJEH speaks to founder and creative director Sabrina Muhieddin on her inspirations, dreams, and why we can expect big things from Lili Blanc in the future…
What are the inspirations behind your first collection?
Mid-last year during the peak of the pandemic, I too spent most of my time indoors at home , just like everyone else. As I’m sure most people did, I missed the sense of a daily routine – going to work, meeting all the vibrant, dynamic and independent women I was usually surrounded by. My first collection, as the name suggests – Hope – was designed to optimistically inspire the women of today to look forward, beyond the foreseeable obstacles and strive to achieve greatness.
It was during this time that I noticed a gap in the market for accessible and statement workwear staples, that also double as daytime wardrobe essentials for the modern woman, and that’s when I started to conceptualise the brand. Hopeful that the situation would normalise, I spent my time at home sketching up outfits that empower the multi-faceted woman of today.
How would you describe the Lili Blanc woman?
The Lili Blanc woman is an inspiration to everyone. She is a modern woman that is powerful yet down-to-earth, independent, and knows what she wants – she focuses on being the best version of herself. The name of the brand reflects our core messaging – dynamic and powerful, just like the flower, the ‘Lili Blanc woman’ adapts to the ever-changing environments and situations that she finds herself in, and comes out strong, blossoming beautifully.
What are your favourite pieces from the collection?
I am personally a fan of all things linen, but of course, each and every piece of the collection holds a very special place in my heart. Each piece ties in with a story of my journey and experience in life, expressed through the silhouettes, fabrics used and colour palette.
What was the most challenging thing about launching a business in the pandemic?
Timing. Starting from sourcing to production, everyone was taking their precautions due to the virus. We had to account for a lot of expected delays with delivery, at each step. The entire conceptualisation, production and launch journey was a supremely time and energy- consuming process, but I always believe in hope, and for sure, the launch was worth all the challenges we faced leading up to it. The debut collection was created with the belief that in every adversity lies the seed of an equal or greater opportunity, and this is a motto I will continue to believe in for every step in the future.
What’s next in the pipeline for Lili Blanc?
We have lots of exciting new designs coming up, each one will remain true to the brand’s ethos – and that is to offer the woman of today accessible and statement wardrobe essentials. For International Women’s Day, we are launching an exclusive dust pink Rose Line capsule collection (under the SS21 Hope collection), followed by two limited edition designs for Ramadan and an exclusive launch for Eid. The brand has been so wonderfully received since the launch, and I’m so excited about this journey and what’s to come in the future!
- Words by Naomi Chadderton