Meet Lilit Madanyan, founder and CEO of the California-bred luxury brand, Ladaire. A few years ago, after life appeared to turn upside down for the company owner leaving her jobless and defeated, she took the reigns and decided to create the next industry-changing wardrobe for the modern woman.
Madanyan had earned her years’ worth of extensive experience in fashion as a fabric specialist for several high-end brands such as BCBG and Juicy Couture. Eventually, she ended up working for a smaller luxury brand that allowed her to expand her horizons and get her feet wet in product development. But after the company suffered grave losses and closed its doors, the now-CEO was left in the dark.
After a few words of encouragement from her husband, Madanyan decided she would try her hand at creating a fresh approach to the classy woman’s closet. She dedicated herself to doing what she never in a million years believed she would do; she created her own line. And in 2017, Ladaire opened its virtual doors. Early on, she decided that the brand would offer sophisticated styles designed with exceptional quality, but that her customers would not be paying an arm and a leg for them. “It was really important to me to keep the brand price conscious,” the founder said. “We wanted to offer women a way to one-up their wardrobes without completely emptying their bank accounts. And we really pride ourselves on providing high quality products while keeping affordable price tags.” Initially, the brand was notorious for their silk dresses, eveningwear, and powersuits. But as of late, the collections have been expanding into providing an entire essentials closet, including loungewear and intimates.
Needless to say, the company owner says the brand has been seeing “tremendous growth”. Customers have adored the pieces and their high-quality fabrics, but more importantly, they’ve stood by the brand while it has released new pieces unlike those from their typical collections. Thanks to their loyalty to the brand, the company was able to open its first Brick and Mortar location in The Americana at Brand shopping mall located in Glendale, California. The direct-to-consumer brand has slowly been expanding nationwide, while also designing entirely new and innovative pieces for the seasons to come.
But it wasn’t always the up-and-up for Ladaire. Madanyan tells us that creating and managing the brand has been a roller coaster since day one, but that she’s learned several essential lessons along the way that has led her to reach pivotal success. “When we had just started creating pieces for the collections a few years back, we were still doing our wear tests on fit models,” she explained. “The fit process is extensive– there’s a wear test, there’s the judging of the functionality of the garment, and there’s also making sure that the pieces fit on a body to the company’s standards. But for some reason, although the pieces looked great on the models, they weren’t fitting the customers as great as I would’ve liked them to. So, I started implementing self-fitting in order to expand our sizes to fit more proportionately to the average body. So far, it’s been the most effective change we’ve ever made.”
Since customer feedback has become crucial for Madanyan and the future of her brand, she likes to visit the store twice a week to get to know her customers and their desires. The more hands-on she’s become, the more she’s been able to provide her customer base with what they’re missing in their closet. So far, it’s been a successful business tactic.
And when she’s not busy running a fashion company, the CEO is usually taking care of her household and her three children. When we ask her how she keeps up with the chaos, she replies: “there’s no other way to get through than to keep going.”
So, what’s next for Ladaire? Well, according to the lady boss, a lot is currently in the works. For one, the CEO plans to invade Beverley Hills by opening another storefront. There is likely to be a few more free-standing Ladaire stores coming nationwide in the next few years. And, of course, more collections are coming. The CEO hinted at potentially expanding the brand into mens’ and children’s wear, but that won’t be for another few years. In the meantime, the lux line will be introducing two new categories: sweaters and shoes. We promised not to give too many details away, but rumor has it that the pieces will be created using the finest essentials imported straight from Italy. So, you definitely won’t want to miss out.
To shop some of the classic pieces from Ladaire, and to stay up-to-date on their upcoming collections, visit https://www.ladaire.com/ or follow the brand at @ladaireofficial on Instagram.