Adornment As Art

I’m absolutely amazed that I had never even heard of Mara Hoffman until two days ago. I was reading random fashion news on the internet and stumbled across pictures from her latest runway show and was floored by how much I love her designs. What she does with swimwear is absolutely remarkable; instead of treating it as a straightforward utilitarian garment, she creates pieces that are evocative of mythology, ritual, and adventure. This beach cover-up is what first grabbed my attention:

After falling in love with the idea of wearing this piece on some enchanted shore and running around with driftwood and feathers in my hair, I found Hoffman’s blog which endeared her to me even more. Although all of her clothes may not be wild or outlandish, I can clearly see connections to the aesthetics of various schools of mysticism, traditional textile designs, and ancient symbols such as the Sri Yantra. Between pictures from her collections she has inspiration photos such as these:

I’m extremely drawn to the creative, spiritual, and anthropological aspects of garment design, and love finding mainstream designers who seem to understand clothing in the same way. I believe that art extends to many aspects of our lives beyond what we hang on our walls, and that whether or not we recognize it everyone participates in an artistic process by how we choose to adorn ourselves.




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