Manja Swanson drives the creative direction of the growing LampsPlus brand, overseeing the company’s design and buying departments. From an early age, Manja was interested in all aspects of the arts, from dance to theatre productions. After graduating from UCLA with a fine arts degree, she worked as a teacher for several years, but remained interested in the creative process.
In partnership with her husband and Lamps Plus CEO, Dennis Swanson, she started a company in the 1970s to manufacture lamps and lighting designs. Out of this venture more than 35 years ago, Lamps Plus was born. In fact, that original storefront is still open for business today, one of dozens of locations throughout the Western United States! In the ensuing years, Manja and her husband have built Lamps Plus into the nation’s largest specialty lighting retailer by creating a multi-channel shopping experience for in-store and online retail customers.
At Lamps Plus, Manja created a unique shopping experience offering great value and an exciting way to shop for products by displaying the merchandise around a certain look. Under her guidance, she started an in-house program that created innovative custom store displays for lighting and home décor products. To show online customers what some of the Lamps Plus products would look like in an actual space, Manja created room scenes as a backdrop to photograph the products.
Manja attends numerous trade and fabric shows to stay current on the latest trends and designs. She works with the buyers to keep them up-to-date and make sure they are staying competitive with the products they are buying. Manja incorporates trends into the Lamps Plus product assortment that are easy for the consumer to incorporate into their current décor. Today LampsPlus.com is the largest specialty lighting retailer in the United States and the premier source for designers, builders and consumers alike.