70 YEARS OF ULLA
The recipe for success of three generations since 1949
Because of our 70-year anniversary we talk to our brand ambassador Inga about the history of the brand Ulla lingerie Féminine, handmade lingerie to feel well and the challenge to stand for values like fairness and Made in Europe in our society.
(brand ambassador Inga with the holders of the brand Ulla lingerie Féminine Stella and Toni Weidauer)
Inga: Please tell to our readers…How did it start and how did you get to this idyllic place in the middle of green?
Toni: More or less coincidence. In the chaos of the 2nd world war my granddad got to Leinach (near Würzburg) because of a friend. In an unused dance hall of a pub arised a small production of stockings.
Inga: How did the brand Ulla arisen since the early days?
Toni: At the beginning the production was based on knitwear and stockings. In the 60s the first customized bodices were sold to rural women in the surrounding. Thereof was developed a small corsetry collection which was distributed in Germany. During this time we produced a lot for the establishing mail order. My grandma was the creative part of the collection development. She died quiet early. Due to that the collection was only makeshift evolved. My parents met at the Textile Trade academy in Hohenstein. So, an own new collection was developed only when my mum joined the company. At the same time the German Textile industry began to move abroad. My parents consciously decided to produce in Germany. They didn’t want to go along with such a trend. The idea to do a collection for a specific target group, namely women who feel well in their body, was born. It was always a matter for us to cover the whole size range.
Inga: When did you take over the company?
Toni: We’ve taken over the company from my parents Ingrid and Gerd Jürgen Weidauer in 2015. We lead the family business now in third generation.
Inga: Ulla celebrates 2019 an anniversary?
Toni: That’s for sure! We celebrate 70 years of Ulla. That’s quiet a long time! We look back with pride to this long tradition and the grown know-how. Many employees accompanied us for many years or decades. We are particularly proud! To develop and produce such a nice and emotional product does only work in an effective team. To work in an atmosphere of partnership is very important for us. Special thanks to the whole Ulla-family for the pleasant time together.
Inga: What is special about your collection?
Stella: We are an absolute specialist for lingerie in big Cup sizes (till Cup N) and big underbreast width (till 130cm). This is reflected in our collection. We offer the entire spectrum from seamless t-shirt bra to sports bra up to the bra made of luxurious swiss lace. Perfect fit and the comfort factor are always in the first place.
Inga: What does “Ulla is your best friend” mean?
Stella: In the morning you dress up your perfect bra and you do not feel it the whole day. In the evening you undress. The bra supported you and you felt confident all day long. Our lingerie gives the body with all its sensual curves the perfect silhouette. Every woman will feel it immediately. A great dress loses its effect if you wear the false underwear beneath. With the bosom at the right place you will be an absolute eye-catcher. Our lingerie will always support our customers like a best friend.
Inga, why is Ulla your best friend? As our brand ambassador you regularly inform our followers on Facebook and Instagram with News and specials about our collection. You wear our lingerie private and in films as we can see: (see below: Ulla Lingerie Féminine at TV-Mainfranken)
Inga: Ulla became very dear to my heart. I am totally impressed about the wearing comfort! In the past I was usually unhappy when I came home from lingerie shopping. Mostly I was miscounselled or the quality of the lingerie was inferior. As my grandma always said: Who buys cheap will buy twice. And she was right. If the lingerie fits and looks good, I feel well and beautiful. Doesn’t matter which size, if it fits it’s a great feeling. Ulla perfected that. You can feel it. I love Ulla!
Inga: Toni told us earlier that his parents consciously decided to produce in Germany. How does it look like today?
Stella: We still produce a big part of our products in our own sewing room here in Leinach. This is and will be an absolute pillar in our production chain for sure. You need know-how and experience to produce such lingerie in big sizes and high quality. This all is bundled here. This will not change in the future. Since some years our production is supported by two companies in Slovenia and Latvia. We work very close with them. They produce our lingerie in the same high quality as we do. A production in Far East is out of question due to ethical reasons. I think we as a manufacturer have to assume responsibility.
Inga: Where do you obtain the fabrics?
Stella: Our raw goods apply to the stringent criteria Made in Europe. All our fabrics and ingredients like ribbons and closings are produced under fair conditions in Germany or at least Europe. We set high standards to our fabrics which meet the needs of our lingerie like fitting and wearing comfort.
Inga: How does a product arise in your company?
Stella: That’s a long process of development. Many interesting and creative people are involved. We are in lively exchange with our retail partners what the consumer needs. The next step is to consider how we can integrate these wishes into our collection. At the textile fair in Paris we meet our suppliers and select suitable fabrics. This leads to prototypes. If everyone is satisfied with design and function, we together decide to make the prototype ready for series production. Accordingly a long period of patternmaking starts in the cutting department. We offer bras in over 100 different sizes. The cut of every size has to be optimized. Again and again the lingerie is fitted and tested by women. Fitting and wearing comfort are perfected in many steps.
Inga: And the production chain?
Toni: The production begins with the cutting of many individual parts. A bra consists about 40 pieces. Fabrics, embroidery or lace and ingredients like straps, ribbons, closings and adjusters are made by many different suppliers. Everything has to match exactly in color and has to be on time in our factory. That’s a logistical masterpiece! Please make yourself aware of that. Even if some items are sewn in Slovenia or Latvia, the cutting is only made in Leinach. The bra parts like the back, lower shell and the bodice are cut out by a computer-operated Cutter. We put emphasis on highest precision because the cuttings are accurate to a millimeter. Pieces out of embroidery or lace are cut by hand. In this step everyone has to work very precise. If not, the embroidery border at the top shell of the bra is not symmetrical. All parts and ingredients of the bra go together as a production bunch to the sewing room. There work highly skilled employees which have much know-how and experience. This is necessary because of the delicate fabrics which is not so easy to process. They put together the pieces exactly to size to a perfect fitting bra. You can equate the sewing time as a men’s jacket. After the final inspection the bra will be packed and stowed to our warehouse. From here we deliver worldwide.