Evocative ocean breeze of Maria Ancona

Like her native Puglia region of Italy, Maria Ancona is imbued with the colors of nature – dazzling white, ocean blue and ivory sand. She expresses that inspiration in classic, clean and linear designs that are themselves timeless.

Since she was 6 years old and dressed her Barbie doll with her own creations, Maria has had a passion for fabric and its many possibilities. In summers as a youngster she studied sewing and embroidery with a local master seamstress.
Maria Ancona fashions, Puglia Italy
Finesse is expressed in this feminine daytime and cocktail dress created by Maria Ancona for her new collection “Eleganza”.

“Fashion has always been my passion.” She recalls. “I research and seek perfection through innovation and hard work.”

To her fashion has always been harmonious — the mental state of being completely present and fully immersed in a task that embraces research, innovation and artisanal work. “I try to achieve perfection,” she says.

“To me fashion is also source of art and lifestyle,” Maria says. “I experience joy when I select fabrics, special prints, color combinations or dyes. I experience pleasure understanding fabric weight in order to choose the right fabric and when I model them on a mannequin to bring alive a collection that infuses even more femininity to every woman.”

Maria is inspired by nature, its atmospheres and its colors. Fabrics, painting, trees and flowers all provide notions expressed in her work.

Today her very feminine daytime and cocktail dresses, evening gowns and pants show her colors and clean linear vision. Sometimes pleated and sometimes hand painted, they flow and whisper like an ocean breeze.
English fashion news Puglia Italy
A piece from the debut capsule collection “Mare” inspired by the depths of the sea, its colors and environment.

Maria’s skills, rooted in diligent study and practice, are readily apparent in her work. After learning from local artisans, the Pugliese fashion designer from Putignano in the province of Bari studied at a professional school for fashion and earned a diploma in pattern making from Carlo Secoli School in Milan. That knowledge was refined by stints in Milan at the ateliers of Ralph Lauren, Versace, Jill Sander, Aigner and Jenny. What emerged was her own vision in design. “My style have been nurtured by all that past experience,” she says.

“The Milanese experience reinforced my own dream since I was a child – to make my own creations,” she says.

She made her design debut at Lecce Fashion week in 2014 with a capsule inspired by the depths of sea and the maritime environment. Her first collection featured outfits that were built on different levels with a draped pleat detail adding movement and flow, evoking the motion of waves undulating in the distance. The tones of white, blue and beige were dominant colors with details of intricate silver embroidery used to make metallic reflections reminiscent of the ocean floor.

Her many different blues recalling the Puglia sea are a friend to many. They look great on every woman. Pair them with nude or warm white and you get instant beach. Put it with gold for immediate glamour. Maria picks up colors that are amazingly versatile and come in a nearly infinite range of tones and hues.

Last August, Maria Ancona showed at Fashion Puglia in Ostuni, a white city surrounded by a medieval fortress wall with a stunning view over olives groves and sea.
Maria Ancona
Maria’s “Mare” capsule collection was showcased during a lively catwalk show at Lecce Fashion Week in Puglia.

Through her creations, Maria Ancona expresses the beauty of her land bordered on two sides by the Ionian and Adriatic seas and rich in fascinating cities steeped in history, a landscape dotted with ancient Greek archeological sites.

In fact, her second capsule was a hymn to femininity that recalled the beauty and sensuality of the ancient Greek goddesses through the lightness of the fabrics and floating movement of the plissé, all embellished by subtle handmade embroidery on white and beige tones.

As well, her third capsule features dresses that caress the body with cuts and drapes that accentuate femininity. Finesse is expressed in beautiful floating bodice evening dresses with details of Baroque embroidery lined up with tulle to create thin transparencies.

The Maria Ancona’s woman “has to be the conqueror of her space and time”, says the Pugliese fashion designer. “She is a strong woman, self-confident, sensual and feminine.”

To her ideal “garments are elegant, never ostentatious, yet unforgettable”, classic designs that remain in fashion for decades. They don’t give the women who wear them anything to hide behind — her dresses insist that their wearers shine. Maria Ancona is making something which is wearable. Her garments are in a sense slow fashion. When you buy a Maria Ancona garment, you will wear it for longer. It becomes a classic like the little black dress that has managed to adapt to all of the socio-political changes.
Models with fashion designer
Fashion designer Maria Ancona (center) with some who model her creations.

She offers a full wardrobe for women who are simultaneously feminine and classy, natural and sensual.

To match her vision, her dream is to have fashion corners, especially in Europe and the US, that carry her brand and to work at Universal Studios in Hollywood creating dresses for the movies and famous actresses.

With lines that enhance the feminine body, her classic creations are above all elegant: “That is what makes you what you are and enhances your personality,” she says.

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