KRISTINA LINDHE - LEXINGTON

Life Instyle sat down with Kristina Lindhe, Founder of Lexington to discuss how they brought a Scandinavian twist to the classic new England style and American tradition of superior craftmanship.

How did the Lexington journey start?
When I first came to the New England, I fell in love with the area. The houses, the buildings, the nature, and the general way of life, I felt like home. As Scandinavians, we have a strong love for light. That heritage combined with the very characteristic East Coast homes with the white paint and the gray cedar sidings inspired us to create our own unique version of the New England lifestyle. The result was products inspired by the classic New England style following the American tradition of superior craftmanship but with a Scandinavian twist.  

Our vision when we started Lexington in 1997 was to build an international lifestyle brand. That was important for us from the very first day. We wanted to take our brand all over world, and we knew from the beginning that we had the potential to do it! This unique combination of New England and Scandinavian design was not well represented in the interior design world at that time. We saw a gap in the market and a huge potential for our idea. The first years, we were mainly acting in Scandinavia, but today we are represented in many countries all over the world.

With more than 60 Lexington concept stores globally, what makes the Lexington range so successful in a variety of different markets?
The concept is likeable. It´s quite clean design-wise. It’s also fresh and includes high quality, sustainable, long-lasting products. The pieces are timeless with a fashion twist and can be incorporated into your home decor easily. You can create a dream with our products, and that attracts various consumers regardless of where they live. Another unique thing about Lexington is our seasonal home collections. We have four different home collections a year—spring, summer, fall and holiday.  This offers you the possibility to easily renew, upgrade and refresh your home throughout the year. That’s something unique for interior decoration

We also care about the nature. We have been producing long-lasting products since we started. We’ve worked sustainably well before the word “sustainable” became etched on people’s mind.

Tell us a bit about how you design/make your product. Who/where/how/why etc.
My strongest inspiration comes from my travels, meetings with people and experience of different environments. I have had the opportunity to see the most fantastic homes and meet the most inspiring people. I take a little piece of every lasting impression and translate it the Lexington way. Every season starts with an idea. I paint a picture in my mind inspired by the big visions. This includes an idea of the collection, the color palette, materials, and other important details for the season.  I present my idea for our excellent product development team, and we start to work through the whole collection, from idea to product. We only work with top producers some of which are very close to me. They fully understand my product philosophy and share our values. We produce mainly in Europe.  

The look is, of course, important for me, but so is our choice of materials. My ambition is to develop products that last for a long time, and that you recognize immediately. You should be able to say, “this must be Lexington” just by the look and hand feel. The materials are very important for me and sustainability is
a must. 

 

 

Describe your customers and the community you have built/embraced.
Our customers want to share our dream. They are interested in interior but also in fashion, food, travel (when possible). They’re basically interested in all lifestyle-oriented subjects. They appreciate sustainable, high-quality lifestyle products inspired by New England design and our Scandinavian heritage. We have many loyal customers who live all over the world and who stay in touch with us through social media. I get very happy when they share with us stories about the products, they bought many years ago, or when they tell me those products are still beautiful and nice to use. Brand awareness is usually passed on through generations. Younger customers have a strong brand recognition from their homes which makes it important to create sustainable and long-lasting products.    

How does your team stay inspired and authentic whilst working different countries?
First, it´s all about people, and we are happy to have, positive, serious, and genuine teams in our organization. That makes this whole journey easier. One important thing is that they love our products, and it is easier to work with things that you truly love. We stay true to our concept, and we present beautiful, new items, which is the most important source of inspiration for our teams, regardless of which country they represent. We all try to live the Brand.

Who would be your dream collaborator (person, brand, other).
I love to do unexpected things, so probably a person or brand that is not that obvious. The brand or person must also be international because we are represented in many markets. That makes it a little hard to choose any special brand or person – but maybe Tesla cars?

What path led you to Life Instyle and what is it about the show that makes it a great fit for Lexington Company?
We have many followers on Instagram, and several of them have asked when we’re planning to come to Australia. So our path is very inspired by all people wanting us to come here. With Life in Style, we have a chance to meet the whole trade and present the brand nationally in just a few days. I think it’s a very good opportunity to be able to present the brand to the Australian market and meet/partner with the best. Our Australian team has also, of course, a big part of the decision.

Can you share any spoilers on what we can expect from your new collection at Life Instyle Sydney April?
We will show our seasonal summer collection and Icons – our classic, heirloom products that are heavily inspired by our heritage. We’re also showing our Hotel collection. It’s a collection for those who want to create that special hotel feeling at home.

Don´t miss the colors in the summer collection. I think they’re made for Australia!

What is the best piece of business advice you have been given?
Stay focused on your concept and faithful to your brand. At the same time add new and interesting pieces without losing your uniqueness.

And what advice would you give someone else thinking of starting out?
The same. Stay focused.

What exciting things are on the horizon for 2021 and beyond?
We’re all, of course, waiting for the pandemic to get better and I really hope that will happen soon!

For Lexington, we always have new collections and ideas in our pipeline. Some projects will be launched soon, some not – but there is no lack of energy. I am very proud of the development of our new sustainable materials. We have, for example, Tencel/cotton bedding and towels, and so for 2021 I look forward to opportunities to create new, interesting, sustainable products.

When you’re not busy with the business, what’s your ideal way to unwind and give yourself a little bit of self-care?
I love to be with my family. They are all so important to me. My daughter lives in New Zeeland, so my biggest wish now is that we hopefully will be able to travel and meet again. Except that, I love to be out in nature and to crawl early into a bed made with our fantastic bedlinen and read a good book.  

 

 

JUST FOR FUN

1. Karaoke song of choice?  “I want it that way” (Backstreet Boys)
2. Favourite Podcast?  “Here´s The Thing” with Alec Baldwin
4. Guilty pleasure?   The Friday evening glass of wine
5. Next holiday location?  Australia (of course!) 

Meet Kristina at Life Instyle Sydney 17-20 April 2021