Mis à jour : 24 oct 2019
LSI : "I've been passing in front of the studio every day for 2 weeks, and saw the small paper with your concept's description down the window! Then I added you on Instagram and sent you a message!" MT : "Oh, that's great ! I like that you found us in an organic way, I always wonder how people find out about my studio !"
LSI : "Meeting people for real is almost always for good surprises! Could you tell me a little bit more about yourself and what you do?" MT : "I’m originally from South Carolina but was educated for high school and college in New England and graduated from the textile department of the Rhode Island School of Design in 2007. As a student at RISD, I fell in love with the act of making. Whether through silkscreen printing, knitting, embroidery or painting-making things by hand became such an integral part of my design process and it continues to be the backbone of my work today. After RISD I spent several years working in New York before moving back to the south to set up my textile design studio in Savannah, GA. Having grown up around interior design and architecture, it was clear when I opened my studio that I would focus on the development of fabrics for the interior design trade. In Savannah, my signature handmade-modern style was born, using the architecture, landscape, colors and history of the south as inspiration for many of my premier designs. In the spring of 2018 I moved the studio to my husband's hometown of Chicago, which now serves as my newest source for creativity and design inspiration."
LSI : "What does your creative process look like ?" MT : "I always start a design by hand, whether it’s through drawing or carving a stamp or water coloring. I gather reference materials and start making marks that reinterpret whatever I’m looking at. My favorite references these days are architectural, although inspiration can come from anywhere. (I have two designs in the collection that were inspired by antique drain grates I saw on the street when I was walking to the museum when I first moved to Savannah, for example). Once I have the patterns worked out I make a silkscreen of the design so I can test it and perfect it in my own studio before sending the design off to a mill for yardage production. From there, the mill will print in full yardage scale on a linen we import from Belgium, ensuring that each yard is skillfully and carefully made to our standards."
LSI :"Have you ever designed a capsule collection ?" MT : "I designed for fashion for 8 years before and while starting my own company, but I’ve never designed a capsule collection under my own brand."
LSI : "What about are your suppliers ?" MT : "My manufacturing all takes place in the United States at mills that produce both screen printed and digitally printed fabrics and wall coverings. My linens are sourced from Belgium."
LSI : "How could you describe your current costumers ?" MT : "I work exclusively with the interior design trade. I feel it’s best to work with interior designers because they understand the value in something that’s designed thoughtfully and made with the best materials, and they then relay that knowledge onto their clients."
LSI : "What is the most challenging part of your activity ? Do you have any competitors in the USA ?" MT : "The biggest challenge is keeping up with requests for samples and making sure the work is always displayed in the best possible way. There are many other design studios like mine across the country that are producing bespoke, custom fabrics for the interior design trade. I wouldn’t call them my competitors, though. We are all friends! And we love bouncing ideas off of one another and helping each other along the way."
LSI : "What to want to convey with your luxury printed linens' creations ?" MT : "I hope people look at my collection and feel that the designs and colors are timeless."
LSI : "What is your main inspiration source ?" MT : "Architecture"
LSI : "Do you have any motto/mantra/Lucky Charm ?" MT : "Timeless still the word that drives my creations..."
LSI : "Tell me about your best project and the process you had to go through. What made it great and how you overcame obstacles along the way?" MT : "The first project I did was for my parents, who are architects and were also doing the interior design on the house I was able to work with them on. The client had a cabinet with glass doors that housed a lot of family heirlooms that they wanted to hide away, so my dad commissioned me to make a panel of fabric for the back of the cabinet doors. I was living in New York at the time, and they had a very specific vision of the colors they wanted to use on the project. It forced me out of my comfort zone, I had to source a company to custom dye the base fabric a specific shade of blue and then had to figure out a way to screen print the fabric, which ended up happening on my dining room table. But in the end the fabric fit just perfectly in the room, and it gave me a real sense of pride to see the project go from start to finish. It’s really what inspired me to start my own studio."
LSI : “Who have been major influences in your career? MT : "My parents have always been my main influence. It sounds cliché, but seeing them start their own business when I was a child made the ability for me to do the same feel very possible. They’ve also always lived in very beautiful places, even when they were just getting started, so I’ve been lucky to grow up around beautiful things all of my life. It’s definitely influenced my taste !"
LSI : “What books have informed your design philosophy ?” MT : "I always look at architectural books or interior design books as a source of inspiration before I get started on a new collection. There are too many to narrow it down to just one !"
LSI : “How do you keep up on current design trends?” MT : "I am always trying to meet new people and take advantage of the opportunities in my city. For example, this week was Design Chicago, which is a big event at the Merchandise Mart where designers come in from all over the country to talk about their work. That being said, I don’t really follow trends when I’m designing my fabrics and wallpapers."
LSI : "What are your expectations for the future ?" MT : "It’s all about continuing to produce beautiful and well-made textiles and wall coverings and becoming a go-to brand for interior designers who need timeless, beautiful fabrics for their projects."
LSI : "Where will we have the pleasure to see your next collection ? MT : "My new collection will be in showrooms over the next two weeks and is on our website since three days !" https://www.marescatextiles.com