Why we love Liene Linke :
Well spoken, strong sense of self, independent - all words that describe Liene. She stood out to us immediately and we had to share this Latvian designer’s story. Her designs are feminine yet confident. She knows what she wants and goes for it. That’s the type of girl power we can get behind.
What made you want to become a designer?
Becoming a designer was never really a choice for me; it was not something I wanted to do, rather something without which I couldn’t be.
Growing up in an artistic and very liberal family formed my aesthetic flair and independence in decision making from a very early age. This in conjunction with ever available tools for creative expression and inability to acquire “oh, so much desired” finer things served as a great “do it yourself” stimulus for which the appetite over time only grew. As far back as I can remember myself, designing something and bringing it to life is what I did. Always. It is inseparable from my being, like breathing air.
What are your biggest design inspirations?
Having a rather utilitarian approach to design, inspiration, first and foremost, comes to me from either a need of something or discontent with the existing. Human behavior in various day to day life and leisure scenarios and their relationship with the surrounding environment is another crucial source of inspiration. Then the rest of the world comes into play. Inspiration is everywhere!
Coming from a country where all four seasons are distinct, growing up in a highly artistic environment, later supplemented by architectural and highly functional design education and exposure to international culture, I draw my inspiration from nature, various arts and design fields as well as from film, music, international heritage and simply being in the moment.
What is the most important lesson you have learned?
My answer to this question might not seem very specific or career related, however, time and time again I come to realize that truly listening to you inner self, determining your wants and needs, asking for what you want and having an open mind about the process and absolute faith that it will be provided is the most important lesson there is to learn. It pays off to stay this course every time, and vice versa – take anything out of the equation and things just start falling apart. This is a universal law that applies to all aspects of life.
How does coming from a small country affect your work?
I cannot say that coming per se from a small country affects my work in any way. I have traveled a lot from a very young age, lived abroad and been exposed to different cultures. These experiences form my work.
Now, working and running a business from a small country is a different story. It has its pros and cons. The good part is that everything is nearby and easily accessible. Supplies, services, information, and talented people – you name it! The selection and quality of services is truly unparalleled. Most businesses and brilliant specialists are very keen to go that extra mile to keep their customers happy; this in great deal is due to the size of the market which brings us to the biggest downside of running a business in a small country.
There are approximately two million people in Latvia and the vast majority of them are just trying to get by. Market for luxury goods here is incredibly small and very competitive. While there has always been a demand for the high end goods here and a solid customer base willing to invest in top quality products, businesses must look outside the homeland’s borders in order to sustain themselves.
What do you think is most important when you are reaching for your dreams?
Enjoying the process and not getting your eyes too fixated on the prize because dreams might change along the way. Being in sync with yourself at all times is the key.