Interview with Model and Swimwear Designer Maia Cabral
“… be more confident about your looks and educate yourself with knowing what looks better on you.”
Maia, could you start by telling us a bit about yourself. What was your journey into the fashion industry? What sparked your interest in fashion design? I am a model as well, so one day when I needed a unique outfit for a photoshoot, I was in charge of creating something unique, and I came out with a one leather reversible piece suit.
I’ve always had a passion for fashion and sewing, modeling and art in general.
What do you enjoy the most about being a fashion designer? I like the fact that I can create something beautiful and woman can wear it, proud of the design and her body, because of the way she looks.
How would you describe your Maia Cabral Swimwear brand and it’s aesthetic? Is there anything people find characteristically original about your designs? Maia Cabral Swimwear is classy, playful, sexy and elegant. The cuts, strings, and the designs makes this swimwear line unique and different, each piece is reversible and can be worn as clothes, since you will have the chance to style it as you want and its also reversible.
What type of woman do you have in mind when you are designing? I think of a fashionista woman when it comes to design swimwear, not matter what size she is.
Do you remember what was the very first article of clothing you ever designed? I made my little sister prom dress in a few hours and mail it to her over night, it was an amazing experience and she loved it.
Where do you draw your inspirations for the designs? All my designs are in my books, specials designs for my customers and try not to make the same designs for others, but when it comes to create and shoot for editorial, I just free my mind and don’t even need to draw, I just cut the fabrics and start playing around with strings, and the fabrics. I am a very spontaneous person and this is my art and don’t need much preparation, only thing I need is a cup of coffee and I for sure got some inspiration.
What is the timeline from having an idea to actually creating the product? Shortly Describe your design process from mood boards to picking out fabrics to production. Do you have any fashion rules when putting an outfit together? My clients needs are the most important to me, I listen, I understand and I draw a few designs until the client is happy with it, then we choose the right fabrics and colors so I can start working on details and sewing the pieces together until the swimwear piece is done.
What are your favorite materials and embellishments to work with? What captures your attention when looking for the materials you use in your designs? I only use good materials, I use cotton, leather, silk and lycra, otherwise it will change color when it gets wet and it feels and fit different in the body, so what I do is to make sure the colors, material and sizes are right for each design.
Name one style rule you think all women should break. You don’t need a small bikini to look sexy, just like you don’t need to be very skinny to wear a swimwear piece in front of everybody, you just need to have style and be more confident about your looks and educate yourself with knowing what looks better on you.
What do you wish people would understand about working in the fashion industry? I wish people in the fashion industry were more fun and not too serious about it, sometimes people are not very nice or friendly.
In your opinion, what is most challenging about a career in fashion design? What has been the most difficult aspect of getting your brand off the ground and how did you overcome that? The hardest part is to sell your designs, and be a well known designer, it just takes time and the right connections, it’s a long way and requires lots of hard work.
What is the best piece of advice you can give someone wanting to be in fashion industry? I believe that everybody’s experience out there it’s special, since we all are, as an individual in this world, and we create in different ways, but I would say that if you love and believe in something, whatever it is, just do it!
What is the biggest lesson that you have learned since you started your company? I’ve learned to say NO. If I don’t feel like doing it, I just don’t, because it doesn’t feels right. Don’t let others take advantage of me or my work and treasure myself and stick with my ideas, and be truthful to myself its rule number one.
Who are some of your personal favorite female fashion icons? Why? My favorite female fashion icon will be Kate Moss, since she is so beautiful and looks amazing from every angle, and she keeps it so simple when come to posing in front of the camera.
What fashion era would you say influenced you the most? I love the classy 60’s fashion era and the 90’s as well with those bohemian, hippie and wild hairs looks. I like the contrast of the two eras.
Maia, what does style mean to you? Style is knowing exactly what looks better on you, and goes with your personality, make you look comfortable and confident.
How important is social media in development of your brand? Do you feel social media has helped your career and your brand? In these days, social media has became one of the most important communication tool in the entire world. You can communicate with people in seconds.
Do you have any social media channels where we can stay up to date with your designs? I use social media to promote my swimwear line. You can see my most recent work on Facebook Page: Maia Cabral Swimwear
What is your vision of your perfect working day? My vision is to make something that satisfied a need. Something that is beautiful, original, elegant and sexy at the same time.
One thing that bugs you about humans is that…? Humans are so selfish, and negative sometimes.
What superpower do you wish you had and why? I always have this dream that I can fly, wish I can have that power, it feels really good.
Tell us one thing about yourself people might find surprising. When I started my swimwear line, I shot bondage style with an artist in New York City, somehow, I saw it reflected on my designs with lots of strings and cuts, even I am not into bondage or anything like it. I think I just see beauty in everything and use it. It’s all about what you do with what you have.