The Woman Behind The Brand: Introducing Giovanna Lipari

The Woman Behind The Brand: Introducing Giovanna Lipari

In honour of International Women's Day, we had the pleasure of sitting down with one of our co-founders, Giovanna Lipari. She shared her insights on being a successful female entrepreneur and her vision for the future of her company as someone with extensive experience in the homeware industry and a passion for empowering women.

First things first, a little bit of background information on Mrs. Lipari and her family:

Giovanna Lipari and Paolo Lipari both immigrated to Canada from Southern Italy in the late 1950s. They fell in love and became life partners as well as business partners when they founded Maison Lipari in 1972. At the time, the brand operated with one store, located in St. Leonard, and mostly sold bed and table linens. Today, Maison Lipari also offers cookware, dinnerware, home fragrances, coffee table books, decorative accessories, and more. Since its inauguration, the brand has opened a second location and launched an online shop to make shopping more accessible and convenient for its clientele. Family has always been and will always be at the heart of Maison Lipari: Mrs. Lipari’s daughter, Patrizia, is now at the head of the company, her daughter's husband, Chris, is its president, and her son, Francesco, is head of special branded projects.

Mrs. Lipari has created the ultimate boutique for lovers of high-quality, beautiful items that will last a lifetime: Both locations boast a warm and welcoming atmosphere, and include a curated selection of luxury homeware by the likes of Christofle and Baccarat, as well as resolutely modern designers such as Jonathan Adler or by robynblair.

Paolo and Giovanna Lipari

Paolo and Giovanna Lipari

Q: What led to you taking the very first steps towards founding Maison Lipari?

Giovanna: I’ll be blunt: I was poor, I had to work. I have always been passionate about anything and everything that has to do with launching a business, facing challenges, and taking risks. Embarking on this adventure with Paolo encompassed all of those things. We were young, driven, and willing to put in the hours to grow the company. Just as importantly, we were absolutely dedicated to carefully selecting each collection to ensure we only provide our clients with the very best.

Q: What obstacles have you faced as an entrepreneur and specifically, as a female entrepreneur during your career?

Giovanna: None come to mind, which I believe I owe to my persistence and to my strong belief that women can do just as much as men, if not more.

Q: What do you consider your biggest career accomplishments?

Giovanna: When Paolo and I opened our store in 1972, we were a small family-owned business. Look at us today! I’d say expanding the business has been my biggest accomplishment, more precisely, opening our second store at the DĂ©carie location, and launching our online store.

Q: What leadership traits and values got you to where you are today, and where Maison Lipari is today?

Giovanna: You have to be consistent, persistent, and devoted to your work. In order to make any business work or move up to the next level, I had to take risks, and I’m glad I did. You also have to be passionate.

Maison Lipari

Maison Lipari's branded awning. 

Q: What drives you?

Giovanna: My business strategy revolves around one question: How can I make sure every customer’s expectations are not only met, but surpassed? I strive to continuously improve the customer’s shopping experience.

Q: Which women in the public sphere inspire you the most?

Giovanna: I greatly admire Indra Nooyi. She is a role model for women and minorities, having broken many barriers and glass ceilings in her career as the former CEO of PepsiCo, which included the 2008 global financial crisis. She is a trailblazer all entrepreneurs can learn from.

Q: What's one piece of advice you would give to aspiring women entrepreneurs and business-owners?

Giovanna: You must be prepared to work very hard, every single day
 And remember to help yourself help your brand by hiring people who will bring your business to the next level. Reliability, adaptability, having a strong work ethic and being a team player are some of the traits I look for in my employees. Actually, most of my employees are women, which indicates that many of us have these qualities!

Q: What are your favourite women-owned brands here at Maison Lipari?

Giovanna: I absolutely love Baobab Collection’s scented candles and am proud to sell a brand that collaborates with the Malagasy people to help support their economy. I also adore everything Alexandra Von Furstenberg creates and am thankful that she revitalized acrylic homeware after its decline in popularity in the 1980s.

Bonus question for Patrizia, Mrs. Lipari’s daughter! In what ways does your mother inspire you?

Patrizia: My mother is the most passionate, unrelenting, quick-witted, determined, and hardworking person I know. She also isn’t afraid to take risks, it’s what got her to where she is today. She is focused on improving her business 24 hours a day and has more drive and energy than most people that are half of her age.

Giovanna Lipari's story is a testament to the power of passion, hard work, and dedication. As a female entrepreneur in a male-dominated industry, she has overcome challenges to build a successful brand that stands for quality, durability and timeless relevance. Her vision for the future of Maison Lipari is one that is built on the same principles that got her to where she is today, and her leadership serves as an inspiration for women everywhere.
As we celebrate International Women's Day, it's important to recognize and honour the contributions of women like Giovanna Lipari, who are breaking down barriers and paving the way for a more inclusive and equal world. Through her passion, creativity, and commitment to empowering women, Giovanna is not just a successful CEO, but also a role model for women everywhere. We can’t wait to see what’s next for Mrs. Lipari and Maison Lipari!


  • Rosa Bilotta Cerrelli

    Congratulations Giovanna, all your hard work and that of the rest of your family brought great success.

  • Croz Jean-Daniel

    I’m in love with the Lipari Teams ! All the time it is amazing experience, I remember the first time I met Mr Lipari and I was by ``served`` by Patrizia. An Amazing experience and each time I go to the shop I feel like as back to family ! Thank you

  • Claudia Di Renzo

    I love shopping at Lipari! Mrs. Lipari is always there to greet us with her smile and her in depth knowledge of the brands and products that are offered in her wonderful boutiques.

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