Cool Friends: Elise Ballegeer   

April 7, 2023

Meet Elise, the founder of boutiques Lahn & Lahn Living - two incredibly cool shops along the same corner of Christopher St & Greenwich ave (two of the chicest blocks in the village!) We caught up with Elise to hear how these West Village staples came about…at the last minute.

What led you to open up your curated West Village boutiques, Lahn & Lahn Living?

It was all a bit last minute to be honest. As an apparel designer myself, initially I had no desire to go into retail, but was exhausted from traveling around doing trade shows and the idea of having one location was appealing. I also felt there were so many great designers out there that weren’t getting representation and I could see the value of what an independent designer boutique brings to both the neighborhood and the designers. The West Village response was incredibly positive and after a while, I realized that the same concept could be done for homewares, and that’s how LAHN Living began.

How do you find brands/designers that you feel represent Lahn's style & mission?

For brands and designers 1 of 3 key factors need to be met in order to be considered at LAHN:
  1. Women-led
  2. Local or made in USA
  3. Sustainable or Ethical Practices

Outside of that, there needs to be a real POV that we can get behind aesthetically, I’m not particularly great at articulating what that is, we’ll just call it the ‘it’ factor.

What’s your favorite part about the New York creative community?

How small it is. It really seems that everyone somehow knows everyone, or soon will. The multi-disciplinary nature is also impressive and I think very unique to New York. I’m not sure if it’s the hustle or the drive to try something new, but most creatives I know have their hands in several different areas and don’t really stay in one lane.

What’s your favorite place in NYC?

I go and sit at the end of the Hudson piers quite a bit. It’s a mini escape, and always brings me perspective.

What’s inspiring you right now?

All the gardens, I’m a sucker for spring in New York. Florals for spring? I know…groundbreaking.

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