For her initial autumn/winter collection, Maria used tweed as the starting fabric for her designs. These are the highest quality, sourced from independent weavers based on the Isle of Mull, whose flocks are cared for in the most ethical and organic manner possible. They use traditional techniques to produce beautiful yarns that are either naturally coloured or dyed using organic colourings such as woad. These are then woven on Victorian looms into the tweed itself, and the results are fabrics which are closely connected to the landscape that created them. These inspired Maria, and her designs reflected those natural colours. The weavers also use patterns which are rarely seen in mass-produced tweed pieces; giving the fabrics they create very different appearances, setting them apart visually as well as in their feel. Carefully paired with organic silks in soft pastel colours, as accent colours and trimming as well as the lining, the overall effect is to create a collection which was quite literally drawn from nature, in every sense of the term.
Her spring/summer collection was again inspired by the countryside, but with elements of nostalgia, drawing on childhood memories of life in the countryside of Moldova, as well as her wider experiences of nature. As the focal point of her designs, she selected the poppy; a flower which seemed to be symbolic of many aspects of modern life. This bright and beautiful flower appears so fragile, but is capable of not only surviving but flourishing in the harshest of conditions. This became even more appropriate in March this year, where the world was changed beyond imagination, and lockdown seemed to bring to an end many of the pleasures which we had previously enjoyed. The poppy is a symbol of endurance in the most difficult of times, even when there is no end in sight, and a reminder that beauty can still be found there.
Maria drew the poppies herself, and this was then printed onto cotton.
Her upcoming collection continues to combine tweeds with silk accents, producing classic pieces with a playful edge that stand out in any situation. In particular, she has played with detachable silk collars, which can be worn underneath the jackets’ tweed collars to provide an additional colour contrast to the tweed, and to complement the other elements of the outfit to create a bold effect. These can also be purchased separately, with beaded edging, to be worn on top of dresses, tops, blouses or jumpers to accentuate outfits and achieve the desired look. She has also expanded her offering with a range of silk dresses, designed to be wearable at any event, including special occasions, such as weddings. They are conservatively but fashionably styled, so as to create the right sort of impact in any setting. These can also be accessorised with a range of silk scarves in three colours, printed with bold polka dot patterns which are designed to be equally versatile, adding the final flourish to any outfit.