After winning an Ecco Domani fashion fund award in 2011, The Lake & Stars was named as one of the brands in the new CFDA incubator, but turned down the opportunity. They are unquestionably the next big thing in lingerie, and I, for one, couldn’t be happier: The brand provides intimates that a woman would actually want to wear, instead of the strange lacy contraptions and clichés that have become the norm.
I caught up with Mayaan and Nikki via email since Mayaan had just broken her leg, to chat about their mother and daughter campaign, what they’re doing for Valentine’s Day, and the video game (!) they are coming out with.
How did you meet?
We met about eight years ago through a mutual friend in New York who thought it would be a hoot to get his two lingerie designer friends together. We soon saw it was a bit of what we call a “Trick Date,” and became close friends from then onward.
How did The Lake & Stars come to exist?
We started developing the line in 2005, when Nikki and I realized we were always wearing swimsuits as lingerie and wanted bras and underwear that matched this look. Because we both had backgrounds in lingerie, we knew it would be a good idea and that we couldn’t be the only ones who wanted this. We spent a year and a half on fit and construction, and making sure it was exactly what we wanted, then launched in Feb 2007. We’re coming up on our fifth anniversary!
Where does the name come from?
It’s a euphemism from a Victorian book for what a woman would give you in bed…”the works in bed.” As in “she gave him the lake and stars.” We throw the term around a lot.
Do you have any previous design experience?
I had a line called Zoe right when I graduated from school, and worked as a consultant for a few other luxury lingerie lines before this one. Nikki designed at Target for a long time before we started the company.
Who is you dream customer?
We always love to dress strong-minded women… all ages, all backgrounds. Right now we love Azealia Banks, Marina Abramovic, and the head sewer at our factory (who doesn’t take any crap).
What inspired your controversial ad campaign that features mothers and daughters?
It’s actually a series of portraits of our two friends Johanna and India who live next door. I have known them for over a decade, and have always thought they were so beautiful and interesting. Re-meeting the daughter more recently, and seeing her interact with her mom as an adult, I thought it would be inspiring to other women of our generation to see a healthy and mature mother and daughter relationship. We thought they were a perfect example of the kind of women we like to dress. We were quite surprised by the media’s reaction, and saddened that people saw darkness in what was a very lighthearted photo shoot.