Getting to Know the Creative Force Behind Marie Oliver

An Interview with Sarah Evenson

of Marie Oliver

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What led you to create Marie Oliver? I loved all things fashion from a young age and insisted upon dressing myself much younger than most. Luckily, my mom didn’t object, allowing me to discover my love for print and color. Shortly after business school, that love grew into a passion to establish a brand that would inspire women who had an innate appreciation for creativity and quality. I felt modern women were craving a brand that is both artfully expressive and commercially accessible. Having no formal design background or education, it was crucial to learn as much as I could about the industry prior to launching. After almost a year of market research and honing my creative point of view, Marie Oliver launched in February 2015.

What three words would you use to describe Marie Oliver the brand? Optimistic. Expressive. Feminine.

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Why do you think women flock to your brand? What makes it unique? We aim to create collections that women of all ages and sizes will have fun wearing: feminine silhouettes in bold colors and prints that flatter. Our customer is at the heart of each collection - she motivates us and activates our imagination. Our distinctive language of print and color embodies an optimistic voice that empowers modern women to pursue life more vibrantly and joyfully. With a female designer's point of view, our collections cater to the lifestyle of modern women.

Where do you find inspiration for your designs? I draw a lot of inspiration from traveling and I love to do it as much as I can. I am constantly in awe of the people, cultures and landscapes - all uniquely expressive in their own way. I also frequently draw inspiration from art and interiors from my travels. We fuse colors from art and interiors and bring them to life in wearable form.

What would we find you wearing on a Saturday afternoon? Our Saturday afternoons are usually spent at a more casual pace that spills into an early evening. I’m all about effortless silhouettes that can carry from day to night. In transitional months I gravitate toward dresses that are breathable enough for the daytime heat, while equally functional when layered with a sweater or jacket for the evening.

Do you have a favorite piece in your current collection? I have loved styling our new knit collection with our woven separates. The Edie Skirt and Miley sweater have been a Pre-Fall staple.

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What’s something people would be surprised to learn about you? People are often very surprised to learn that I started my career in commercial insurance sales. I very much enjoyed “corporate America” but also learned the importance of having a career in which one can be both successful and passionate.

What’s for your favorite part of working in fashion? The most rewarding aspect of my job is seeing each collection come to fruition. From the initial inspiration for each season to seeing it on the retail floor, it is a labor of love and a much more involved process than what people understand.

Where can our customers find you? Marie Oliver is fortunate to partner with more than 250 specialty stores across the country, in addition to being sold online at www.marieoliver.com. Follow us on Instagram @_marieoliver_ and on Facebook @officialmarieoliver for inspiration behind the brand and style features.

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Courtney Whilden