When you have a swimwear model who is passionate about design and has a head for entrepreneurship, a successful company is born. Two years ago Lauren Layne created her namesake brand and has since dominated the swimwear industry. Her designs are classic, feminine, elegant and always fit to a T. SI Swimsuit caught up with Lauren to talk about the evolution of her business and how she has been able to stand out in a highly competitive industry.
What sparked your desire to start your own business?
I’ve wanted to be a designer since I was a little girl. Over the years of being a swimsuit model I realized the different fit problems in most designs. That, combined with my natural love of fashion, led me to create Lauren Layne Swim.
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The swimwear industry is pretty packed. I can attest to this as my in-box is filled with new brand introductions. How did you become a major player in the market?
At Lauren Layne Swim, we are extremely passionate about designing swimwear that makes every woman look and feel their best!. We are inspired by vintage swimwear from the 70s and 80s and work very hard to perfect our styles.
I use a lot of what I learned from my previous career as a model and apply it to Lauren Layne Swim. It is always difficult to enter a saturated market, but entering a saturated market without any understanding of the industry landscape is nearly impossible. Over the course of my modeling career, I've been lucky enough to create a sounding board of industry leaders and maintain friendships and connections throughout the fashion world. "Women helping women" is a big key to success in our industry, which has been plagued by jealousy for too long. There is also a necessary attention to detail that one must dedicate themselves to on a consistent basis. Staying inspired is important, but following through is just as necessary. It’s hard work, but it’s fun.
You’re not only a designer, but a successful model. How do you balance both roles?
Honestly, at first, it was extremely difficult for me to balance both. I thought I could do everything at once, all in one day. I have now realized how much more efficient it is to compartmentalize each project separately. I will schedule meetings that concern LL Swim only on days I am not on set, to make sure I am fully focused on the project and task at hand. It has become very enjoyable and empowering to be a boss babe on both fronts.
Do you think of yourself as a model or designer first?
I'm a girl that wears many different hats -- it just depends on what I'm wearing that day!
What type of woman do you have in mind when you’re designing?
During every design process we take into consideration every woman. Our most important goal is to make swimwear that every woman looks and feels empowered in.
Can you tell us about your latest collection?
Our 2020 collection is focused on vintage florals and solid staple colors. While we still have our classic string bikini, we’ve added in new tops and bottoms with more coverage.
What’s next on your radar?
We are very excited about our new styles for women and men, as well as some upcoming collaborations.