Photograph by Rebecca Zephyr Thomas
Maggie Marilyn is living every young fashion designer’s dream. Just one year after graduating college, the New Zealand native launched her namesake label with much success. Her architectural silhouettes, punchy use of color, and commitment to ethical manufacturing, has landed her a name to watch in the industry. Ahead of her resort and spring presentation in New York City last month, we asked the new-to-BG designer when she fell in love with fashion, who she is consistently inspired by, and what defines the Maggie Marilyn aesthetic. Read her answers below and shop the label in store on 5 and on BG.com.
Bergdorf Goodman: When did you realize that you wanted to be a fashion designer?
Maggie Marilyn: To be honest it is the only thing I can remember ever wanting to do. I grew up in a small coastal town in New Zealand so I always dreamed of beautiful things that I wanted to wear and create. I love how clothing has the ability to empower and inspire.
BG: Who are some of your personal fashion icons?
MM: Julia Roberts, always! Brigitte Bardot, Jane Birkin…
BG: What was your inspiration for pre-fall?
MM: The inspiration behind Season Five was a true sense of metamorphosis. I have grown from a girl with a dream, to a woman with a business. In the past year, I have learned a lot about myself, and have found an inner strength I was unaware of. This collection is a thank you to all the women that have helped me through trying days, and testing circumstances.
I hope my clothes this season, and the wardrobe that builds from it, will be able to return that favor. Clothes that help us realize our inner strength. To me, inspiration does not have to come from something so literal, visual or tangible, yet my greatest inspiration is the women I both wish to be and wish to inspire, the Maggie Marilyn woman.
A quote from Cleo Wade who is an inspiration to me “My favorite thing about everything is that you have the power to change anything.” The Maggie Marilyn woman believes kindness breeds kindness. It is infectious. She finds strength in her identity. She knows vulnerability is not weakness, but that it is our greatest measure of courage.
BG: How would you describe the Maggie Marilyn aesthetic in five words?
MM: Youthful, Optimistic, Playful, Feminine, Strong.
BG: Who (living or deceased) would you love to see wearing your collection?
MM: I get so much satisfaction when I am walking down the street and I see anyone wearing MM—this is the most exciting thing to me, however I would love to see Emma Watson wear MM. She is a strong ambassador for sustainable and ethical fashion and she is an inspiration.