Interviews, insight & analysis on digital media & marketing

How We Built It: Michelle Collins, Founder of Green Lili

Give us the elevator pitch. Tell us about your brand

At Green Lili we design modern wall art for feel-good spaces that inspire and invite. Our artwork boasts a nature-inspired colour palette, celebrating simple comforts and a laid-back style. Each collection embraces slow living, working harmoniously for curated interior design. Over the last few years, we’ve been the go-to place for affordable oversized abstract art that will stand the test of time.

What inspired you to set up your company?

I have always loved to be creative. I used to design posters for brands like Disney and Coca-Cola, which was super fun, but when the opportunity to work on a brief for Sainsbury’s Home came along, I realised that my passion was art and interiors. I created a Christmas collection of wall art for them, which ended up on the supermarket shelves and once I saw that I knew I wanted to take the plunge and do this full time!

What was your biggest challenge in year one?

I think the transition of moving from a job with set tasks and deadlines to now having to organise my own time and not just create artwork but try my best at every aspect of running a business. From sales to accounts, marketing to social media – you have to put a hand into everything! It was and still is such a huge learning curve.

What would you say has been your biggest marketing success?

Probably our collaborations. I remember when we were approached by French Connection Home and asked to design their first-ever wall art collection. We have a similar aesthetic and shared love for a rustic style, so this project was super exciting for me. I think this shone through in the artwork as it was a huge success and gained a lot of interest in the press. We’ve also collaborated with some fantastic content creators on social media who have used my artwork in spaces we all dream about living in. They helped showcase how each piece can be used in a really inspiring way.

What has been the biggest mistake you made?

Saying yes to every opportunity without thinking it through! We definitely tried to run before we could walk. If you say yes to everything, you are in danger of spreading yourself too thin, and it’s easy to lose direction. The excitement of starting your own business, I guess!

Tell us about your plans for the future

The future will certainly involve some travel – it’s the best source of inspiration! Spending time outdoors and in nature re-energises my creativity and instantly puts me in a positive mindset. With slow living and at the forefront of what we do, we want to develop a range of timeless and affordable homewares that bring nature inside, elevate your home and complement the rest of our collections. Watch this space! 

How we Built it

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