Eye Candy: Archive NY

| April 12, 2014


Words by Anthony Thomas

AMIRA MARION is obsessed with patterns. Her love for them is surpassed only by her love for printing them onto objects. Her textile label, Archive NY, comes into the equation as the mediator between her two passions and bringing them into the real world. Naturally we wanted to know more.

Can you give me a brief bio of yourself?

I grew up in Michigan and moved to New York when I was 18 to study fashion at Parsons. After graduating I had the good fortune to design for a couple great companies like Madewell 1937 and John Patrick Organic, before moving to Paris for a couple years (for love!). It was while I was in Paris I started ruminating on this textile project and booked a trip to Guatemala to start the first collection. I moved back to Brooklyn last year and launched Archive New York in February.

What is the premise of Archive?

At Archive NY we aim to create a tangible digital collection of vintage and antique fabric remnants, and then transform them into a beautiful usable object. Instead of putting our textile finds into a big book of images, like traditional archives, we want to expand use and distribution of these images. This first collection focuses on vintage textiles from Guatemala. I searched in the markets in the highlands to find textiles that I found were both beautiful and would appeal to people across country borders and made prints from them. For our other collection Archive NY Handmade we work with a Non-Profit Organization and local artisans to recreate antique Guatemalan fabrics using traditional weaving techniques.

Why pillows?!

I studied and worked in fashion but I also really love home décor. I find that there is often a large disconnect between the two worlds aesthetically and I was having a hard time finding objects for my home that represented my exact style. So I though why not create what I want? Also pillows are so easy to decorate with and it’s one place where you can go a little crazy with colours and patterns without a commitment of buying say, a printed couch. Pillows are like training wheels, or like a gateway drug to colour and print!

You obviously love patterns! Where does that come from?

Well it seems subconsciously it all started with the Guatemalan textiles my parents have all over the walls in their Michigan home. In the 70s they lived on Lake Atitlan for a few summers. Honestly, growing up I didn’t care at all about these textiles. I ignored them! But they seeped into my brain somehow and then at Parsons all of my design projects used inspiration from indigenous textiles from one country or another. Studying abroad in Paris we were exposed to some great textiles classes and it was really there that my future direction was sealed.

Pete Deevakul did a fantastic job with the lookbook. Was it a dream working with him?

It was definitely a dream. Pete is so amazing and I knew that whatever photos he would take would be incredible. It’s so rare to be able to work with someone whom you trust 100% creatively. He said he wanted to get weird with the concept and layout, and I said ‘Great! The weirder the better” and by the end there was a floating everything bagel in the photo. Not many photographers can make a floating bagel look so clean and on point.

What’s next?

Pillows are only the start for Archive NY. I have great plans to print on any and everything- scarves, pyjamas, beach towels, the list goes on. Next season we’ll have a collection of printed bags in collaboration with KARA and this summer coming out with a collection of printed soap packaging for skincare line Kahina Giving Beauty, using Moroccan tiles as the inspiration.

Stay tuned for the Archive NY website to keep in the loop with these projects.

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Category: FASHION, FEATURED, Uncategorized

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