Masha Ma’s hidden beauty

Masha Ma is a young Chinese stylist who splits her time between her workshop in Shanghai, London and Paris. At the age of 30, the presentation for her second collection, showcased at the Palais des Beaux Arts during Paris Fashion Week, boasted a full house.

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Masha Ma’s collection portrays a graphic and feminine vision of Winter 14/15. All featuring pencil skirts, silhouettes are made up of sweaters, cardigans and oversized jackets all in monochrome shades. A chic sportswear spirit is evident through satiny and precious materials, while detailed inserts, studs and rivets give a rock look to outfits. These volumes establish a very elegant, casual look while veil-like embroidered masks cover the models’ mouths. We don’t know if the mask is a discreet reflection of city pollution, or whether it represents the veiled femininity of the 19th century Western world, and veils of a more religious nature, that adorned a large proportion of women living in Muslim countries. The fact remains that a veil covering part of the face is intriguing; this combined with multiple layers evokes a strong sense of seduction. Who wouldn’t want to discover what’s underneath?

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For this collection of ephemeral beauty, the designer is in fact inspired by the “Queen of the Night” (Epiphyllum oxypetalum), a South American flower with an intoxicating scent that only opens up at night. It’s said that its scent could be fatal to the most sensitive of beings. For Masha Ma, this sensual and powerful collection incarnates the fulfillment of her research on the idea of femininity through the simplicity of lines. Concerning its origins she says “This season I decided to explore another, stronger aesthetic, to look for a new direction and to take more risks. I’m going to continue in this direction. Next season I’m going to go even further. I create for strong-minded women who love risks”.

Masha Ma is increasingly styling Chinese celebrities, who love her sense of cuts, twists and knitted iridescent materials. This hair-raising and off-beat lace is what makes this former Central Saint Martins College student a designer to follow.

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