OUR CONNECTION TO MARIANA
Our Co-founder and Art Director Matthias Graf met Conscious Stylist Mariana during a collaborative photoshoot. Mariana's focus on pre-loved clothes and creative solutions for the reuse of textiles sparked deeper conversations on common goals – to live and create according to circularity wherever possible. Mariana tested the Bananatex® Tote Bag Medium in Natural White/Heron, and we were excited to hear that it fast became her constant "functional companion" to an ever-changing wardrobe.
Bananatex® Tote Bag Collection
What I personally love about this model is that it has the look of a Tote Bag, but I can use it as a backpack when I'm cycling, shooting or walking – and when don't want to look too sporty, I can carry it as a tote again. Also, I really like that there is a small zip bag in the front that’s big enough for my wallet, phone and keys and super easy to access when on the go without needing to open the whole bag.
WHAT LED YOU TO WHAT YOU DO TODAY?
My mom had a boutique in our house in Mexico, from a really young age I assisted my mom, picked up the phone and advised my moms clients. As a kid I was not always very polite since I have always had a very strong opinion on what I consider tasteful or not. :)
My first job was in the Human Resources department of a Spanish Bank, I really enjoyed my job actually but was really much more concerned about the newest fashions than on databases for sure. :) Then I dared go abroad and follow my dream and I studied Fashion Styling in London. I guess it was always quite obvious I was going to become a stylist, I cant help but style the people and the objects around me.
WHAT DO YOU CARE ABOUT IN LIFE?
There was a turning point, when I realised that the industry I so admired so much was one of the most polluting and reckless industries in existence, it suddenly did not make any sense to me to feature an unrealistic image of a flawless model in designer clothes, and have all of it done by slaving interns with a decadent amount of options to choose from, all just for one outfit for one perfect picture.
HOW DO YOU ADDRESS THESE WITH YOUR WORK?
My mission is to go the extra mile to find and feature new talent, young brands and ethical design. My statement is that big brands do not need my help and if I can make a little difference by featuring an emerging designer or renting pieces from a small shop instead of going to fast fashion stores then I feel that I am acting in line with my morals.
Additionally I love giving simple tips to consumers and industry people on how to change their perspective, so we can finally create change. Nevertheless, I realised that there is more to do than to just consume more consciously. We have to drastically understand and alter the entire cycle of production to avoid waste in the first place. My goal is to deeply research and understand the system in order to break it down into digestible, actionable information for the mainstream.
WHAT DO YOU LOOK FOR IN THE THINGS YOU BUY?
I divide up the things I buy into two categories: essentials and non-essentials. Essentials are basics, seasonal and practical items, something you need. In that case I look for function, quality and durability and I take my time looking for providers who can offer me those items with an ethical provenance.
Non-essentials are things I do not need and are based on emotion – something that keeps captivating my attention. If I have been thinking about it for a long time, it means it will also stay with me for a long time. And rather than going to get, it I prefer to let it come my way.