Meet MUUS - Wearable Costumes
The MUUS Lena Maksimova line presents highly conceptual, artistic clothing at an affordable price point. The label's pieces are feminine, eclectic, and always original. Owning a piece from MUUS Lena Maksimova is a hallmark of adventurous, fashion-forward style.
What's your name?
My name is Lena. I am the designer and founder of the MUUS brand.
Where are you from?
I'm from Yakutia! I was born and raised in the village of Tyungyulyu.
Describe your signature design style in five words.
Eclectic, unique, romantic, balanced, functional.
What's your biggest source of inspiration?
Inspiration is such a mythical concept to me. At the end of the day I think it all comes down to work. When you think or focus for a very long time on any topic, inspiration will inevitably follow. In my daily life I always carry a notebook in which I can write down or sketch ideas as I think of them.
Do you prioritize aesthetics or functionality?
I try to combine beauty with functionality in order to find a good middle ground.
Did you undergo a formal design education?
Yes, I studied for six years at the Novosibirsk State Academy of Architecture and Art, majoring in costume design!
Do you gravitate more toward designing for men or women?
Initially our brand was completely focused on women's fashion, and dresses dominated. However, over the past few seasons, we've noticed a huge progression in men's fashion and its intersection with elements of women's apparel. In our future collections I'd like to stay open to the possibility to make some pieces for men.
What first made you passionate about fashion?
I decided to become a designer rather early. I was in the ninth grade when I first heard about the profession. From then on I gradually immersed myself in the world of design and beauty. My mom saw that I had a penchant for drawing so I enrolled in an art class and visited a local artist for painting lessons. After that I began to create my first designs. I found out that I enjoyed making clothes and drawing so much that I couldn't stop.
If you could travel anywhere tomorrow, where would you go?
I'd return to my homeland, Yakutia. It's my place of power and identity. My parents even named me after the river Lena. I think the best place to be is where your loved ones are.
What is your favorite food?
I love food. I can't pick a favorite, but my favorites include Pan-Asian and Italian cuisine.
What's your favorite month or season?
I personally love summer. In terms of design, I prefer spring/summer, as the collections of this particular season come easier to me than fall/winter.
If you could collaborate with anyone in the world on a new collection, who would it be?
I would very much like to work with modern artists, musicians, and theaters. I believe that any outside-of-the-box collaboration helps the brand to develop and has a positive effect on the audience's receptivity.
What is one thing you can’t live without?
The ability to design - it's a job I love that gives me great pleasure.
Check out MUUS's new collections here