ten things you need to know about maria piankov

Meet your new favorite designer.

by Milly Heane
19 April 2017, 2:53pm

Despite falling into fashion on a whim (she'd always planned on studying medicine) Maria Piankov is steadily carving out a name for herself as one of the coolest young designers on the block. But then again, with her mom's background as an embroiderer in a bridal atelier, fashion has always been in the Russian designer's blood. 

After graduating with an MA from London College of Fashion in 2015, Maria was one of few designers selected to show during London Fashion Week. She was also selected for a catwalk showcase on the official schedule during Mercedes Benz Prague Fashion Week. A marriage of opposites, her brand juxtaposes athletic and couture elements. This high-end sportswear aesthetic expresses Maria's admiration for ballet and the musculoskeletal system. Technically intriguing and feminine, it's the ultimate design for modern women. So without further ado, here are 10 things you need to know about her.

She has difficulty describing where she originates: "I cannot think of myself being a Russian, neither a German, or having a home at a certain geographic place. This maybe explains my commitment to constant change and contrasts."

Her friends describe her as: "A workaholic."

She describes her first insight to fashion through her idolization of Mikhail Baryshnikov: "It started with my deep fascination for ballet and the grace of the musculoskeletal system. So I started drawing bodies at a very early age and enrolled in some courses. However, I never intended to become a designer. And yet a number of coincidences made me love fashion."

If she could change one thing about the world, she would: "If I had magical powers, I would make people think positively, which would change their lives and as a result, the world."

Through creating a brand, she actually embarked on a journey of self-discovery: "It was a precious moment for me when I realized who I was and that I wanted my own brand. You know, you have all your favorite brands that inspire you, and there is so much noise out there. But then one day, you do something that comes naturally and is pure. This is the 'aha moment' when you realize you actually have a lot to say and you have a voice."

The best piece of advice she ever received was: "I showed my BA collection to Valentin Yudashkin. He frowned and walked off. That was my first big lesson."

She did a lot of traveling before her own fashion brand was even in the picture: "I was born in Russia and spent the first eight years of my life there. It was a vivid and wild childhood. In the 90s, we moved to Germany. After my BA, I spent couple of years in London as well as in other European countries."

For Maria, the best thing about being a young creative is the satisfaction: "It's the most satisfying thing. It's a wild ride with ups and downs. You dare to make mistakes, gather experience, and you feel alive in the most literal way."

The brand is a marriage of opposites: "It's the juxtaposition between athletic and couture elements which create a high-end sportswear aesthetic. Craftsmanship and handmade elements have always signified luxury both in historical and contemporary fashion."

The highlight of her career so far is: "That the brand has gained such strong appeal to people. This is what counts in the end."

Look: Tim Walker captures the electric energy of bright young things Adwoa, Slick, King, Leo, and Elliott in The Creativity Issue.


Text Milly Heane

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