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Interview with Ieva Juodelyte, from Mummymoon

Demi-couture label Mummymoon has fast become a favorite of Instagram’s mini-sartorialists—from San Francisco @blossomkind to Belgium, Texas @everwillalove to Toronto @zoe.b3an, the best-dressed kids in the world have eagerly embraced Mummymoon. Hand-crafted in Lithuania of fine Italian fabrics, Mummymoon is well loved for its clean lines, minimal aesthetic, and surprising details. We sat down with Creative Director Ieva Juodelyte to catch up with this highly covetable brand to see what they have in store for 2017.

Tell us a bit about the Mummymoon team. How many are you? Do you have different areas of responsibility? What aspects of the business do you collaborate on together?

There are three of us, each taking her role in the team. Vejune—she is responsible for fabrics and manufacturing. Vejune is a communicator, a mediator, a leveler of emotions and a perfect networker. She’s a team player and without her there would definitely be no us. Ingrida is responsible for financial matters and sales. Without her we would not be at this point where we are now. She is a demanding, fast thinker and gets straight to the point. Lastly, there is me, Leva. I take part in creative work, such as design, visuals and overall generation of ideas. This year Julija has joined our team. After we learnt the way she handles administrative and coordination tasks, there was no way we can survive without her anymore.

Each of us complements and inspires another, and I truly believe this is the mechanism of how our team works. For instance, I need Vejune to motivate and provoke new ideas in me. Therefore, she is an easy-going person, mastering the art of compliments in the moments you need them most. Sometimes I think the right chemical elements between Vejune’s personality and mine is the only reason I can create. On the other hand, Vejune needs to manage my creative volcano, to ignite me and then observe how I bloat with fresh ideas. I let new concepts out, then Vejune and Ingrida decide whether we adopt them or let them grow for later. This is how everything is born in our team. We need Ingrida to put constraints on us, since Vejune and I are heavily distracted people. Ingrida is highly rational, a black belt of project management. She is quite strict, at some points even too much.

How has the Mummymoon brand has changed since you launched your first collection in AW 2011?

We have entirely changed. The only thing that remained is the feeling that none of us works for financial purpose only. Everything happens out of inner passion. Even though we experimented a lot that led to us becoming a serious company. Sometimes it is strange to look back and remember how the business has started. I remember that image each time – me, surrounded by fjords in Norway, designing the first garments for kids. Today one of the biggest sewing companies in Lithuania produces our products, we have an office in a pretty cool neighborhood, we develop, and dream on.

The debut collection for your new line Zebra I Can See will be available this spring. Tell us about how you came up with such an imaginative name for the new label. How will Zebra I Can See be different from Mummymoon?

Zebra was born in Copenhagen. That time we brought Mummymoon to exhibition, but clearly, we went there not for making sales. Now it seems the reason of that trip was to discover the Zebra I Can See brand. I remember that moment when I was l lying in a bed and drawing sketches for the new brand. Three of us chitchatted and suddenly decided— come on, let’s do it! We came up with the idea that this brand will be entry level, containing only colorful leggings and that’s it. We called it a game, an experiment.

Now, I have no idea how we exceeded our expectations with this brand, expectations which we didn’t even have in the very beginning. Today 17 stores will sell the first collection! It commenced in the US and continued on to Saudi Arabia, Australia, Belgium and the UK. We are astonished and very happy. At this moment, we are expecting to receive AW17 samples, which will be unveiled in Paris. This collection is made of 30 items. It is incredible how much reality has over grown our dreams.

You design and produce exclusively in Lithuania. What are the primary advantages for you and your customers?

Control and quality—everything is within reach so we can actually take care of the production line more fluently. The principle of Mummymoon is to offer exclusive quality over quantity.

Have you had any 'pinch me' moments on your journey, those times when the brand made a big breakthrough or had some fortunate stroke of luck you can tell us about?

Probably the real luck is made of experienced failures on your way—once you admit them and learn from all the situations you went through. If you are lucky enough you stand up, and this is already a win. Before Ingrida joined our team, it was only me and Vejune. During those days we went through so many challenges so I could write quite a decent novel out of it.

But we‘ve established a boutique store in the best neighborhood of Vilnius, and later we came up with business idea of knitting carpets and finally were considering the concept of our own designed region of private houses in the rural areas of capital.

Can you believe it? Me neither! We’ve experienced conceptually intensive periods, however, at the moment we live in a more or less stable universe of our own. Mummymoon is clear, Zebra is also in a certain way. At some point we miss new challenges, but also we realize there might be a risk of win and failure. What‘s next? The only thing we know is that what we have now is only a beginning.


AW17 Mummymoon collection
The principle of Mummymoon is to offer exclusive quality over quantity.
Ieva Juodelyte, Mummymoon creative director