Behind the Labels – Bohemian Diesel Marketplace
When I discovered Aniela Parys designs it was love at first sight! Aniela creates lingerie, swimwear and apparel by using vintage and locally sourced materials. Working and living in one of my favorite cities, Barcelona, Aniela handpicks all the fabrics for her handmade collections herself and only uses the finest quality European lace for her lingerie designs. Aniela only makes small runs of each collection so I’m super excited and honored that Aniela Parys is now also available on the Marketplace!
Read here what Aniela tells about herself and her designs:
So who are you and where do you call home?
My name is Aniela Parys. I’m a self-taught apparel designer and traveling artist from Portland, Oregon now based in Barcelona, Spain. All my life I have loved to travel more than anything else, and I feel most at home when I’m exploring new places. But currently I also feel very much at home in my two business bases, in both Barcelona and Portland Oregon.
Tell us about Aniela Parys.
Aniela Parys is the name of the brand I created when I moved to Barcelona, just over a year ago. I started the project with very little and it has evolved into a full time job. I now have a range of women’s lingerie of all sizes, and I offer custom sizing. All of my products are sewn individually by hand in my studio in the Raval neighborhood of Barcelona. The materials for my lingerie collections are sourced in Europe. The swimwear and custom clothing designs are all made from vintage fabrics I’ve found in my travels. My productions are very small – usually about 50 pieces – so each design is a limited edition. It is very important to me to support local communities and produce ethically made, high quality products.
How would you describe your brand?
Since I launched my first lingerie collection it became clear to me that a major strength of my brand is the impressive range of artistic support behind it. I work with photographers, visual artists, and public figures from all over the world, and I value their creativity so much. Our set designs, photography, and videography are all equally important to our collaborations. It’s not just about the clothing. It is about the imagery behind it and the story we are telling when we capture the moments created to feature the designs. I strive to create something different than what I see in the media advertised to women. Clothing is something women use to express themselves and the products I make are only a frame to something beautiful. My designs culminate with the person wearing them, the way they choose to dress the pieces, and the memories they make while in the garments.
What goals do you have as a designer?
I have two main goals as a designer – My first goal as a designer is to make my company as ethical as possible and to be mindful of the impact that my project has on the community, environment and the media. I think it is our responsibility as the next generation of clothing designers and small business owners to find creative ways to make a change in how things are currently being done in the fashion industry. I have found that buying local, sustainable materials and supporting the community with my business are two of the strongest ways I can make a positive impact. Aniela Parys is a part of the handmade movement, and I want to share both how special our process is and how great my appreciation is for each talented person involved in our projects.
Other than sustainability, my goal is to create dreamy, classic silhouettes that share something of my life experiences and personal aesthetic. I find the majority of the fashion industry very superficial, and I am made uncomfortable by the way the media attached to it portrays woman. One of the ways I thought to challenge this is by making photographs of my designs featuring women of talent and natural beauty. The models we work with are not done up or edited with Photoshop. We use analog photography as a way to capture colors and use light in the most natural way possible. This last year most of my models have been my friends or artists whose work I admire. I want to continue expanding this concept. These things really set us apart from other brands and I believe our clients buy from us not only because they like our products, but because they appreciate the project as a whole.
What are your primary sources of inspiration?
My biggest source of inspiration is from my friends and the strong community I have created in my two business bases, Barcelona and Portland. It just so happens that my friends have always been talented creatives, working on their own amazing projects that constantly surprise and motivate me. I love working with them because most are working on projects very different from mine. They include visual artists, photography, music, videography, styling and creative direction. Our collaborations are always exciting and motivate me to continue to evolve Aniela Parys into what I want it to be.
What makes you happiest about your job?
I love watching my project grow and finding new creative ways to improve our process. When I moved to Barcelona I had very little money. I started my first online shop by setting up a small desk in a shared studio space of my friend Amy’s boutique, Grey Street Barcelona. I produced my first collection by borrowing Amy’s sewing machine. With each sale and a lot of hard work I was able, over time, to buy my own equipment and set up a proper studio space in her shop. Now I love the fact that I still get to do a little of everything and that my job is always changing depending on what we need to work on at any given moment. One day I can be designing one of the new collections, or preparing fabrics. The next, I might teach my seamstress how to make a new design, work on a photo shoot, or begin a collaborative project with another artist. I love that I don’t have a set schedule and that each day is different and exciting. I feel very proud of my project and I hope my story can inspire people to be brave and to work hard for the things they love.
As a kid what did you dream of becoming?
When I was a child I wanted to be a painter. I think this from my grandmother because we would spend hours drawing and painting together when I was very young and I continued throughout the years. Outside of this I have always been making things, I started sewing at a young age and quickly realized it is my passion and my favorite artistic medium.
Do you have a dream project?
My dream is to have a moderate-sized clothing production facility employing local talent and using the most environmentally sustainable methods available. I would also love to create a larger studio space with a photo studio, and to open a showroom in the center of Barcelona. I am currently working on some exciting new designs including an eco-collection of men and women’s underwear. Within the next year I also hope to have launched a small eco collection of women’s clothing that I have been working on over the last couple months.
So happy to have Aniela and her amazing designs on board! <3