My favorite life lesson quote is quite simple — “invest in yourself”. Not just financially, but also emotionally. Your mental health influences your perspectives, decisions, feelings and awareness. It’s important to show yourself love and do things that make you happy. Aside from financially supporting my career and passions, I always make sure to take a time out and come back to center. Although I enjoy my career, it is also very demanding. My “time out” often entails a good yoga class, enjoying a coffee while catching up with a friend, or sketching. These are all therapeutic things for me that remind me to slow down and that it’s important to take time to separate work from personal life.
I had the pleasure of interviewing Larissa Lampitelli of Larissa Kate Lingerie. Larissa Kate Lingerie is a small (but mighty!) woman-lead business with expertise in modern, luxury lingerie — all of which is handcrafted in New York City. The brand has a strong commitment to providing women with self-empowerment and has proven to its loyal following that lingerie can be for them to assist them in feeling beautiful inside and out.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?
I have always wanted to develop and run a company of my own! Creating a career out of a passion I have just seemed most genuine and organic for me.
It all started at a young age, when I began working in a specialty shop that carried beautiful, luxury lingerie and organic soaps. I quickly recognized the exceptional quality that these products had, and developed a deep appreciation for this form of precision and craftsmanship. I found that this is where my love for lingerie began.
Not only did I enjoy designing, but the passion for this category also assisted me in self-growth and awareness. I feel it is just so important to love yourself and confidently express who you are, as you are. Individuality is something I have really learned to embrace and be excited about! As you can see, my brand and lingerie suggests this same message, and stands apart from mass marketed product.
What is it about the work you’re doing that’s disruptive?
Not many people know that Larissa Kate Lingerie is a one-woman show! I self-run and self-fund the business on my own, and started with a very small amount of money.
Aside from the obvious designing responsibilities, I humbly lead all other aspect of my business including sourcing, purchasing material supply, branding and marketing.
In promoting that this is possible — my hope is that I will inspire other women to chase their passions and encourage them to crush any hesitations or fears they may have in beginning a journey like mine. You just have to go for it.
Additionally, I often collaborate with other New York based creative — artists, embroiders, models, etc. I enjoy this so much because it brings passionate, hard-working people together to create something even bigger and better. I always complete a collaboration having learned something new from those I am working with, and trust that I offer something to them in return.
We all need a little help along the journey — who have been some of your mentors? Can you share how they made an impact?
I have two go-to people that I would consider my mentors.
The first is my best friend. She too, owns her own fashion company. That said, we have similar perspectives and understandings within our industry and product category. Together, we share both our struggles and successes. Not only does this allow us to learn from one another for further growth, but we keep each other in check — as to why we do what we do.
The second is my boyfriend. He offers the best advice and has been my biggest fan from the beginning. Although he doesn’t know a thing about intimate apparel, he is a huge support. We share the belief that being persistent and chasing what feels right is key to any goal you set. He often reminds me of my successes so far, and to always appreciate the small victories — as these should be used as motivation. Every little bit counts!
Can you share 3 of the best words of advice you’ve gotten along your journey? Please give a story or example for each.
Go for it and work really hard. Building a brand takes a lot of time and hard work. It’s canceling on friends because you need to sew orders, working on the weekends, and having more than one job to keep the business afloat. The hard work will pay off if you put in the time!
Don’t be afraid to make mistakes! When you own your own company making mistakes are inevitable. The mistakes are usually out of my control. This is a big one for me since I am a self-funded company, when I make a mistake on something I lose money and it hits me hard. I have a long list of mistakes like — I’ve been through countless factories in NYC trying to find the best quality production, have had to get my patterns redone and regraded. The biggest mistake you could ever make is being too afraid to make one.
Push yourself to step outside of your comfort zone. I am an introvert at heart, so it’s important for me to push myself and get out of my comfort zone to better the brand, excel and to also grow as a person! It’s important to not worry about what other people think of you. Go with your gut and follow your calling.
How are you going to shake things up next?
I am packing my bags and moving to Austin, Texas! If you’ve ever been to Austin, you know how creative the community is and that entrepreneurship is booming there. While New York will always be my home (and I will be back), I want to experience a new city and new lifestyle where I can gather fresh perspectives and influences. While my production will still be based out of New York City, you can expect to see some new culture, trends and collaborations from Texas. Change is good! :)
Do you have a book/podcast/talk that’s had a deep impact on your thinking? Can you share a story with us?
Yes, I love podcasts! There are so many helpful, and inspirational podcasts that I have come across specifically for business startups. I’ve used this outlet often to gain additional knowledge and insights on how other companies navigated through the beginning stages of their business. I view it as another form of support! I enjoy listening to the guidance others have to offer and experiences they have had to both relate and learn from. The most impactful podcasts that I would recommend are: How I Built This with Guy Raz, and Skimm’d from The Couch by The Skimm.
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. :-)
Everyone needs more self-love!
If everyone loved and respected themselves more, we’d be putting out our best self to our communities, society and to others. With self-love, you feel better in your own skin. If everyone felt better in their own skin, I believe there would be more happiness, kindness and understanding for one another.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
My favorite life lesson quote is quite simple — “invest in yourself”. Not just financially, but also emotionally. Your mental health influences your perspectives, decisions, feelings and awareness. It’s important to show yourself love and do things that make you happy.
Aside from financially supporting my career and passions, I always make sure to take a time out and come back to center. Although I enjoy my career, it is also very demanding. My “time out” often entails a good yoga class, enjoying a coffee while catching up with a friend, or sketching. These are all therapeutic things for me that remind me to slow down and that it’s important to take time to separate work from personal life.
How can our readers follow you on social media?
Follow me on Instagram! @larissakatelingerie
This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for joining us!