I will never forget the first time I laid eyes on my friend Maren. I was sitting in a classroom freshman year of High School. My curly hair was probably pulled back by a painted barrett on each side, with my bangs straightened and curled under. Most likely I was sporting some chinos and a Lacoste shirt, just trying to fit in.
The “new girl” who walked in the room had just moved East from California. She was as exotic to our East Coast high school as I imagined California to be. And she was spectacular. She had short red hair feathered to the side and was decked head to toe in purple, right up to her eye shadow! I eagerly told her that I was going to California soon to visit my aunt and asked her what it was like. I had never met anyone like Maren, and knowing her is to understand the phrase “she has je ne sais quoi” . Dressing with such style, often in patterns, bright colors, designs made by her mother, and jewelry by actual artists, made it hard to fit in at our New England high school. Maren never wanted to, or tried to change to fit in, and this was one of the things I loved about my new friend. She always remained confident and true to herself, and our peers liked her even more for that. She stood out as an individual. Being friends with Maren is similar to the way someone with a British accent is perceived to have a higher IQ. It makes you feel that much more cool and hip, just by association. Lord only knows why she took gawky little me under her wing, but she would meet me in the bathroom early before school and yank my unruly hair into tight French braids. We have been best friends ever since, and I continue to feel lucky to be graced by her friendship, and especially at this point in life, cherish the long shared history we have together. She has made me a better person, taught me so much along the way, and continues to influence my style to this day.
It is no surprise that by now she has spent over 25 years as a leader and style-maker in Boston’s fashion industry. Maren grew up to become a stylist, Run an agency for stylists, and now is at the helm of her own company, Anchor Artists. Maren founded Anchor Artists out of her dedication to the success of clients and artists, and to use her unique creative vision to see them thrive. Still willing all these years later to continue to help me with my own fashion challenges, I recently asked her advice on styling my gorgeous new ONE/FashionABLE Genet scarf.
This scarf, the Genet, is a collaborative effort between ONE, fashionABLE and the Alt Design Summit. Each Genet scarf is handmade, taking three days to make with the handiwork of three women. The Genet scarf design was created as a limited edition in honor of Mother’s Day, and is only available while supplies last through ONE.org or fashionABLE. Each scarf purchased helps to support improving the lives of women and children in Ethiopia.
Maren had immediately connected to the story behind fashionABLE and the Genet scarf. Her own mother, Joanne Rossman, had once been a single mother, like Genet, the woman for whom my scarf is named. Also, like Genet, she had supported her own children by designing, and creating scarves (along with some of the fabulous clothes Maren wore back in high school). Instead of just showing me how she would style it, as only Maren could, she generously assembled a professional team of stylists, a hair and make-up artist and top photographers to take on the challenge, ultimately telling the story of Genet in a beautiful, visual way. I visited the set on the day of the photo shoot to give you a peak behind the scenes!
Hornick/Rivlin were the photographers gracious enough to donate their day to beautifully capturing the stylists interpretations of how to wear the Genet scarf. The Hornick/Rivlin Studio is a collaboration of 2 photographers, Rick Hornick and Sandy Rivlin. They joined together in 1981, destined to make photographs which go far beyond commercial, toward a classic interpretation of picture taking enjoyed by the industries of home/interiors, lifestyle, portrait, apparel catalogue and still life. They work in concert technically and aesthetically, and were both compelled by the story behind the women who create the FashionABLE scarfs to help make the shoot a success.
Of course to polish any photo shoot you need the perfect hair & make-up artist , enter Anchor Artists Kathleen Schiffmann, a true professional with a big heart. Her talent is legendary and Kathleen is the artist of choice for many of Boston’s top photographers. She has travelled the world on commercial and fashion shoots applying her magic touch to the worlds top models, able to produce just that right look for any photo situation, yet she remains grounded and friendly in her attitude .
The Shoot location was at the home of Joanne Rossman, designer, one of the models, and Maren’s mom. Behind the scenes you can see her home studio where she creates her own line of goods to be sold at her store Joanne Rossman. Maren and her mom are both consummate foodies so of course they provided the talent and crew with an amazing food for sustenance. Rita Rose, Joanne’s Muse and often the subject of Joanne’s blog, acted like the diva she is lounging by the fire, while Maren’s pug Hugo looked on.