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INTERVIEW: Maria Stanley

We are so excited to welcome Maria Stanley to IDUN as our very first “Artist in Residence”. We have been long-time followers of Maria since her first collection launch back in 2016. Her creations are sophisticated-romantic, vintage-inspired yet with a clear timeless perspective that meets the modern woman where she is. In anticipation of our upcoming event with Maria (December 14th!!!) we wanted to catch up with her and learn more about what keeps her going and creatively revitalized.

What keeps you stable during the chaos of your week?
Sleeping is my favorite activity - so I make sure I get enough in at night especially when life feels chaotic, or I’ll treat myself to a nap. Eating nourishing foods is always important to me, my body yells at me if I don't. I can get overly introverted when I’m stressed, so pulling myself out for a happy hour or having friends over for dinner always helps get me out of my stress-head. 

What people/place/things do you find yourself consistently going back to for inspiration? 
I’m always most inspired by textiles, I find the best ones in India during my visits. As cliché as it sounds, I always find myself on the hunt for good vintage.

We appreciate your clear goal to advocate for socially aware manufacturers that support their employees, both with fair salaries and benefits. Can you share a little about why the “slow fashion movement” is important to Maria Stanley as a brand?
For me, it’s the only way to build a brand - organically, slowly, and not excessively. Building close relationships with the makers of my clothes is incredibly important to me personally (it’s become my favorite part of building my business, I know the makers at the factory I work with in India by name), but also to ensure we’re in agreement when it comes to waste management and quality control. Making clothes isn’t easy, but it sure is easier when we’re all in it together. 
We’re becoming more aware about the food we put in our bodies - Where does it come from? Is it organic? It’s equally as important to ask these questions about what we put on our bodies.

Are there any specific materials or colors you feel drawn to recently, maybe within your upcoming Spring 2020 collection?
Sea shell buttons and I are having a great moment together - you’ll see a lot of these in my current and upcoming SS20 collection. I love their raw opulent nature.
I just moved back to my home state of Minnesota after living the past 12 years in LA. Getting used to the cold has been an adjustment to say the least, so I’ve been reaching for my warm-cozy clothes lately - my Alpaca collection for AW19 is a favorite. It’s incredibly warming without feeling bulky!

Current book or publication you’re reading?
I’ve been reading Shantaram.

Current song or album you’ve been listening to?
Monster Rally’s new album and Tennis (who also has a new album out!) is my all-time favorite.

What are 3 products you can’t live without?
  1. Coconut oil - I sleep with it in my hair once a week. I learned this miracle trick from a friend, it’s made a huge difference in my fine-dry hair.
  2. My eyebrow pencil - I have big eyebrows but they’re a little sparse. I like to fill them in to make them look like caterpillars.
  3. Moon Juice Plumping Jelly - A face serum I’d been wanting to try this for quite some time. It’s awesome and smells amazing.
Where is your favorite place to pass the time, or take a break?
I’m a bit of a homebody, our bedroom is full of plants and has wall to wall south facing windows. It feels like a dream land.

Words you live by day to day?
You be you, boo boo.
I tell this to my partner, Michael, all the time. I also say it to myself when I start comparing my brand to others. My brand has its own path and identity. Every once in a while, I just need to remind myself to follow my heart and be proud of it!
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