Hi! I’m Ilva
The idea to start my own clothing line was born while exploring ways to connect with my daughter on a more creative level. I see clothing as a way to express a mood, a point of view, self-acceptance. Even love.
My daughter was a few days old when I knew that the six-week maternity leave granted to new mothers in the U.S. was not going to work for me. I did give it a try, just to find myself three years later quitting my job declaring that decent maternity leave. I picked up a few freelance jobs and got down to work: could I bring this business idea to life? Could I step into this new field of work? How much could I teach myself? If I stayed up an extra hour every night, could I figure out how to lower an armhole?
Women in my family have had a special love for the craft of dressmaking across generations. It was my mother who instilled in me the love for high quality fabrics, intricate details and the steam a hot iron produces when sliding over freshly washed cotton. She raised her two children in Post-Soviet Latvia in which there was a lot of scarcity when it came to clothing. But not in our house. Many mornings in our house started with linden flower tea and a new outfit my mother had made while I slept.
There is just something so powerful about this particular childhood memory. It might be the reason I'm embarking on this journey.
I always knew that if I was going to start my own business, it had to be one that provided a platform for me to think, question, grow, and make a change – as small or as big as I possibly can. The values I L V A is being built upon range from such self-explanatory concepts as ethically made clothing and fair pay to broader and more philosophical ones such as curiosity, empathy, kindness and respect. At the moment, I L V A is me and a few other people that are helping me build a brand.
My daughter just turned five and I am launching a mini bamboo collection – three styles in three colors. The time spent setting the foundation for this business has, in a way, felt like reconnecting to who I am, but it has also been a test in resistance, dedication and love. I believe that you can be small, but you need to know what you stand for. And you always need to keep going, no matter what!
ABOUT THE BRAND
ILVA is an ethical brand offering clothing items made from mindfully selected materials. Our goal is to leave a positive impact with every sourcing, manufacturing and sales decision we make.
We like clean lines, fun colors and excellent fit. We like creating outfits that hold up wash after wash. We don't like harmful substances – whether easily noticeable or hidden. We like it when everybody involved in the creation of our garments gets paid a fair wage. Oh, and did we mention that our packaging is made from 100% recycled material and is reusable and compostable?!
Unfortunately, we had to rethink our business model and launch on a much smaller scale than we initially intended due to COVID-19. We've decided to adapt, simplify and approach this with more fun and less desperation. We hope we can manage to transfer this feeling to you.
THANK YOU for stopping by!