The mother's gifts

Fashion Corner

The mother's gifts

  • Published :

Catherine Lindenberg and her daughters Morgane and Salomé Lindenberg jointly manage the fashion concept store Irina Khä in Liège.

Morgane (38 years old): "Our penchant for beautiful things, those 'wow' pieces, both for Salomé and me, comes from our mother. And from our great-aunt who was truly visionary. She had her favorite designers like Saint Laurent or Louis Féraud. A sense of detail that was unique to her as well. Since we were little, our family life revolved around Irina Khä, whom we watched grow. But I never thought I would necessarily make a career out of it.

After attending Solvay, I had various professional experiences before joining the family business in 2013. My sister took the leap the following year. We aimed to establish the online store. And thereby, to showcase, far beyond Liège, how great our mom's eye - she's far too humble to admit it - and her particular curation are and deserve to be acknowledged. Our great pleasure, all three of us, is to attend fashion shows together. Let's not kid ourselves, the thrill of the purchase and the little adrenaline rush that comes with it is one of the coolest aspects of the job. Even if we don't always agree 100%, we discuss without ever getting angry. Ultimately, it's always the store's best interest that prevails. You might not find everything that's displayed on the big e-commerce platforms here, but that's precisely how we playfully compete with them. Our customers will find here the piece they've been dreaming of, but they can also be inspired by the accessory that will complete their outfit, by associations they might not have thought of, as you'll see in the photo shoots we do for our Instagram account

Salomé (37 years old): "Our parents never asked us to work with them. But the store was always present. That's where we went after school. In the evening at home, it was a recurring topic of discussion for our parents. We were privileged witnesses to all their decisions.

Today we make them together. The idea was never to replace our mother but to develop our own expertise alongside hers. Ten years ago, there was still a lot to be done in terms of e-commerce and social media communication. I studied art history at ULB and worked for an online art sales website. When I started applying my expertise to Irina Khä, we thought we were preparing for the possible end of the physical store. And the exact opposite happened. Nothing replaces customer contact and the experience of a good salesperson. In this regard, our mother has a strength that we can never take away from her: her detailed knowledge of materials, fitting, and what combinations work. She "knows" what will appeal. Our philosophy goes well beyond the selection we can offer. When our customers enter our store, they know they're going to have a good time. That their purchases will never turn into regrets."

Catherine (63 years old): "Initially, nothing destined me to work in fashion. I came from a family of restaurateurs, I attended hotel school, my path seemed all laid out. Until I met Michel, who would become my husband. His parents owned a store specializing in leather and suede. I already loved beautiful clothes. Together, we decided to expand the boutique's offerings to ready-to-wear. I was already a fan of the Marithé & François Girbaud brand. That's where it all started. Others followed that we remained faithful to. And others disappeared. It's up to us to constantly be on the lookout for new gems. As long as they fit us. Now we ensure this together, the three of us. My daughters have the advantage of having a fresh perspective, where I sometimes feel like I've come full circle, seen it all. Don't they say that fashion is cyclical? Our strength is to have fantastic creators as partners who trust us. To be able to choose from their collections the pieces that we can bring to life here. To inspire our customers in turn because we know them well. Even those who discovered us online thanks to the phenomenal work done by Salomé and Morgane on social media and our webshop. And who have allowed us to become known beyond our borders. Fashion is far from being as frivolous as they say. Clothes make you strong, they shape your personality. We love advising our customers. Always with kindness."