q: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and where you grew up in Romania?
a: Free spirited, romantic and ambitious. These are the three words I reckon describe me best. I grew up in both Bucharest and a small town in Transylvania, which brought me closer to nature and allowed my imaginary world to flourish undisturbed. That’s probably why I crave solitude and yearn for days spent surrounded only by nature, but at the same time I also need to live the big city life.
q: What do you think was the biggest influence on you becoming a designer?
a: Both my mother and my grandmother greatly influenced my interest in fashion from a very early age. They were both very elegant, and even though Romania was still a communist country, they were continuously making efforts to be well-dressed (and in those days and in those circumstances you can imagine it wasn’t easy at all). They visited the couturier as often as they could, and created their own designs, inspired by the odd magazine they found. They had good taste, and they very much appreciated high quality textiles, but I think that is a random thing, because during that time clothes really had value.
q: What are you biggest influences in fashion? (e.g. fashion designers or artists?)
a: Though I usually use just a few shades in my creations, like white, black, beige or blue, I actually get inspired by artists who use a lot of colors, sometimes in a brutal way, like for example Basquiat or David Hockney. I love to lose track of time watching the black and white photographs of Herbert List or Peter Lindbergh. I also recently fell in love with an American photographer, George Byrne. Also recently, I became very passionate about the work of graphic designers such as Ikko Tanaka or Helmut Schmid. Bianca Jagger, Anita Pallenberg, David Bowie, Jimi Hendrix, Jerry Hall will continuously inspire me. I love contrasts and that’s where I find the balance I need for my designs.
q: Your pieces are primarily in black, white and navy, is there a reason for that?
a: I simply adore the black and white allure. I believe that there’s no other better combination, it’s just so classy and so refined. I love contrasts in general, perhaps that’s also the reason why I’m always mixing things up, like for example, a cut that’s very masculine with some very feminine accessorising.
I am a firm believer in clothes being something that should compliment your way of being, and never undermine it. The main attention should always be on the woman, and not on the clothes she is wearing. That’s why I love neutrals so much.
q: What is your processing for designing a collection?
a: If I’m being honest, it’s actually quite difficult. Either I’m not such a prolific designer, or I simply need a lot of time to research and test before I’m satisfied with a design. I never decide on a theme, make the research and project my entire collection. I always create the first 4-5 pieces, and they help me contour the next ones, and then the ones after that. Sometimes, after a couple of months, I come back to one design and add something or even give up a detail I no longer believe will work. My designs are simple, but complicated at the same time, that’s why it’s hard for me to find the right balance. I want all my work to be just perfect, not too little, not too much.
q: Is there a new collection in the making? If yes, can you tell a bit about it?
a: Of course. The times when I’m not working on a new collection are very rare. I’m actually working on two collections at the moment: Fall/Winter ‘20/’21 and Bridal ’20. My next Fall/Winter is very much about the perfect suit and I’m focusing my attention on mixing safari and sport elements with very feminine and classic cuts.
q: Do you think your personal style is reflected in your designs?
a: A lot. 95%. I love to wear my own designs.
q: Where do you see MANURI in the next 5 years?
a: Me and my team are working on the international development of the brand, we believe in the brand, which I think it’s the most important thing: to be surrounded by people who care and who believe in you. I would very much like MANURÍ to grow truthfully, never to lose its core just to satisfy a certain market. I’m certain that we will grow at our own pace and with the same strong beliefs we’ve always had: that a woman should always exhale sensuality in a most refined way.
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Avenue Coat - £759
Romanian Designer, Manuela Pungan, is the mastermind behind the brand, Manurí. Her designs are structural and distinctive, with a minimal colour scheme that fits the aesthetic perfectly.
Although her designs mainly consist of black and white, Manuela actually states that most of the inspiration comes from daring and vibrant art, photography and graphic designs.
Elektra Blouse - £123
Having only joined the Pop-Up and online shop not long ago, Manurí is already becoming quite the superstar amongst our customers. They are brought in by her Cazino Dress that is placed right by the entrance, intrigued and excited by the simple, yet elegant designs. They just can't get enough of her!
Cazino Dress - £836
If you are ever in need of a Christmas party or New Years outfit, Manurí is the one for you. So what are you waiting for?
Sonny Dress - £962
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