Pareidolia is the tendency for incorrect perception of a stimulus as an object, pattern or meaning known to the observer. For example, seeing objects or faces in clouds.
Since her childhood, womenswear designer Max Zara Sterck has seen inanimate objects take the shape of dresses or tops before her eyes.
She would take these unassuming items home with her and sketch a female body around the object. From a humble plastic bottle to a crumpled candy wrapper, no item escaped the designer’s childhood imagination.
Nowadays, Max Zara takes abstract lines and shapes as her inspiration and intuitively considers how these shapes could come to form a garment. By draping with fabric across a mannequin or a live model, the designer considers how abstract lines and shapes can be transformed into designs.
The Pareidolia collection is a celebration of human imagination.
By starting with an abstract shape rather than a pattern, the designer naturally reinvents the design process.
When looking at the silhouettes, the designer developed a diagonal one which defies rigid pattern-cutting methods. Through the correct placement of seams, the female body is accentuated and able to move freely, while encouraging a powerful attitude. Max Zara prefers to design mostly in black and white as these colours allow her to focus on the quality of shapes and the movement of her designs.
The collection’s starting point were elastics, with the main fabrics being wool and satin silk. To create a fitted silhouette as well as a draped, voluminous one, she combines traditional fabrics with elastics. At the same time, the movement of the fabric remains important to fit the body and the garment’s silhouette.
Max Zara Sterck’s personal fascination with the body and movement are the main inspirations behind her work: creating sculptural pieces by following the interaction between the body and the fabric in movement.
Max Zara Sterck is a womenswear label based between London and Amsterdam. Established in 2019, the designer strongly values the artistic necessity of fashion as well as the importance of durability in design. Her garments are made for women who desire comfortable pieces that do not compromise on elegance or design, enabling the female wearer to actively pursue her goals, dreams and passions.
Max Zara has a personal fascination with dance as a means of expression. She creates garments wherein movement plays a leading role, uniting her designs with the body and its flow. Fabric is also at the core of her design process. The way a material falls on the skin and its interaction with the body inspires her to create and express herself. Therefore, she always works with a real-life model enabling her to undertake a three-dimensional research and highlight the movement and wearability of the designs.
Her ambition is to continue collaborating with women across different industries, namely within the world of art, dance and design. Through working with diverse female ambassadors, she wishes to highlight the cultural relevance of her designs and retain artistic integrity, while not succumbing to commercial pressures. Her work has been further reinforced by collaborations that lead to the creation of innovative fabrics and multi-disciplinary presentations.asas
CAMPAIGN Photography @amandaelisek Model @ambervanoirschot @supermodelmgmt Styling @jordyhuinder Hair & Make up @woutphilippobeauty Photography assistant @vivian.hermans
LOOKBOOK Photography by @marjasterck Model @beaudylle