Maryna Morozova: “A Ukrainian woman is unbreakable!”
After the start of a full-scale war, Ukrainian entrepreneurs and brands showed that in such difficult conditions it is possible to continue to work, develop and even expand.
Maryna Morozova, the founder of the Ukrainian brand MARSEGO , tells how she adapted her work to the conditions of the war, about the opening of stores and wardrobe items that are indispensable this winter.
The life of all Ukrainians has turned from a life-work balance to a war-life balance. How do you find a balance between work processes, taking care of yourself, taking care of your family?
I’m still in search of that balance. Due to the war and difficult circumstances in the country, all the forces go to the development and support of the business, a little time is left for the family, and then for yourself. But I’m working on fixing it, after the launch of the new collection I’ll definitely add something for health to my schedule: massage, beautician and yoga. We need to restore balance.
I’m still in search of that balance
How has your life changed over these months? What does your typical day look like today?
There was much more work. We decided that in such difficult times, the only way out is to work harder and give it our all. This is necessary to provide jobs, support the country’s economy and distract from the new reality.
In parallel, we are working on preparations for the launch of three new MARSEGO showrooms in different cities of Ukraine, so business trips have been added to the usual work tasks.
My rise at 8:00, morning grooming rituals and the obligatory breakfast. Around 10:00 I go to production or work meetings, and so on until 19:00. Under my responsibility is the development of collections, fitting, approval of materials and accessories, work with a marketing agency, control of PR and brand content.
From 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m., the time is dedicated to the daughter and husband. My little Alice goes to bed late, so mommy time and evening rituals start after 10pm. And very often I still finish dealing with work issues before midnight, because there is a lot of work and few hours in the day.
In such difficult times, the only way out is to work harder and give it your all
How did you adapt your work to the conditions of war? What difficulties did you have to face and how did you overcome them?
Part of the team left the country in search of safety at the beginning of the war. But many professionals from other companies lost their jobs due to hard times, so they joined our ranks.
Before the full-scale war, we sewed all batches by ourselves and were focused only on the development of our own production. Now we have changed the format of work and now we cooperate with factories all over Ukraine. New people appeared in our team, so we adapted to the new work format. I see how we have grown during this period, hard times have made us stronger.
Hard times have made us stronger
Now, fan and emergency power outages have been added to the constant air alarms. Has it affected your business? What crises are you still preparing for?
Every business is acutely aware of power outages. This complicates the work of our showroom, production and factories throughout Ukraine. We were forced to change the working hours of the showroom, consultants take orders at home or in Kyiv establishments during off-hours. It is difficult for both the team and the visitors.
The new showroom, which we plan to open soon in Kyiv, will have a generator to ensure uninterrupted operation of the store. There were no outages at the factory a week ago, but we have already faced them, so we are also looking for generators.
In your opinion, how has the positioning of Ukrainian fashion in the world changed?
I have always looked at our brands with pride, because many worthy projects have been created in Ukraine! Many events abroad, including charitable ones, support and invite our designers. I think this is a good opportunity to make a statement.
Are you currently following world trends? What brands inspire you?
Of course, I constantly follow news and trends to stay informed and one step ahead in the world of fashion. But it is not always necessary to follow all the trends in order to preserve the individuality of the brand. Because trends dictate fashion, and I’m in favor of being unique.
The main emphasis of the new collection MARSEGO is a manifestation of maximum femininity. What is a Ukrainian woman for you now? What is the most important thing in your collection?
Ukrainian woman is indomitable! Despite all circumstances, he has a zest for life, does not give up and continues to live, help and develop. He believes in a bright and peaceful future and will never allow himself to give up.
In the new collection, I tried to create basic things that will be relevant for different occasions, complement the wardrobe and last more than one season. The capsule includes things for office dress code, casual looks and sporty looks.
What is your personal favorite from the new collection?
My favorite is the floral printed chiffon midi dress and sky blue faux leather jacket.
Unfortunately, in the current reality and with such a fast pace, I wear dresses less and less, and especially heels. When I wear this dress, I seem to remind myself how carefree it used to be. The posture and mood immediately change, I feel special in it!
The jacket has a special story, it was supposed to be released in the spring capsule, but due to the war and the delay in the delivery of materials, I transferred it to the autumn collection, added new shades. But it is the blue color that is special, it reminds of the pre-war times and carries the message that only strong faith and perseverance will give us a peaceful sky. The features of the jacket are the perfect pattern, high quality tailoring and the eco-leather itself from the Greek factory.
Is there demand among foreigners for Ukrainian brands?
MARSEGO already in the first years of its existence began to conquer the hearts of foreign customers. As I remember now, the first orders to China or Africa. I was so surprised that people are willing to wait for delivery and order our things so far. Then there were new and new countries. Now we have many supporters and regular customers from Europe, America and UAE.
You are planning to open a flagship store in Kyiv soon. Tell us about the concept, idea, mission.
The opening of the store is planned in a month and a half. The deadline has shifted a little due to power outages, but we are working hard. It will be a new cozy place in the heart of the capital, where you can put together a basic wardrobe of high quality. We want to create a special atmosphere so that everyone can stop time for a moment and devote it to themselves.
Five winter wardrobe items that every Ukrainian woman needs?
A patriotic fleece sweatshirt, a warm sweater made of soft yarn, the perfect pair of jeans, a fleece tracksuit, a warm jacket or down jacket.
How to find the strength to continue working despite the war?
It is important to keep yourself in good shape, do sports whenever possible, and surround yourself with close people. We live in extremely stressful times, so as hard as it is, it’s worth finding something supportive. Someone will be helped by yoga, running, someone will need the help of a psychotherapist or the support of friends. The main thing is to give yourself time to recover, not to beat yourself up if something doesn’t work out like it used to.
Photo: PR agency