As part of our current exhibition, we are spotlighting our exhibit partners for Sustainable, Upcycle, Perfect. This week we are shining a spotlight on The Local Vault & Wardrobe Stylist Maria Turkel who we will be featuring at our upcoming event on March 28 -- for tickets click here. To contact Maria, you can visit here website here.
Maria Turkel is an entrepreneur with years of experience building connections and support between herself, her clients and local businesses. In 2007, she founded Maria Turkel Wardrobe Styling which has served clients from Fortune 500 companies to start-up CEOs to local philanthropists to teens who are just starting to define their personal style. Maria’s goal is to help her clients feel confident and authentic in their everyday lives through their wardrobe choices by editing and cleaning their closets, taking them shopping, building outfits head-to-toe and creating LookBooks that serve as tools to make getting dressed each day easy and efficient. Previously, Maria built a successful career in the film and television industry in Los Angeles. She is a former Wardrobe Supervisor on numerous shows including the iconic series, Friends. As a personal stylist, she has a vibrant email newsletter subscriber base and an engaged social media community. Her focus has always been to build deep, reciprocal relationships whether in Hollywood or Fairfield County.
Job: Personal Wardrobe Stylist
Hometown: Pittsburgh PA—Go Steelers/Pens/Bucs!!
Home Right Now: Riverside CT
Family: My amazing husband, Brad, and our delicious children, Lucie (20), Noah (18) and Sela (15)
Favorite Charities: Neighbor to Neighbor, CT Against Gun Violence and Greenwich Alliance for Education.
1. When did you know you wanted to be a stylist?
I’ve loved clothing and the psychology behind why each of us chooses to wear what we do for as long as I can remember. It’s always been a part of me—appreciating that clothing is an art form we can wear, that we can use it to say something interesting about who we are deep inside, and that we can change the message as we go along each day. It’s always been integral to who I am—documented by some pretty 'special’ outfits I created starting at the age of 3 when my mother gave up arguing with me about what I should wear.
2. If you could invite any two designers for dinner (dead or alive) who would they be?
Edith Head and Debra McGuire. I chose costumer designers because I feel that the images we (collectively) have seen on screen have influenced exactly how we wear the beautiful pieces that are created by fashion designers. I’d love to hear Edith’s process especially in an era dictated almost entirely by men’s opinions (male studio heads, producers, directors, etc) and to spend time with Debra because I love her and miss working with her! She is so extremely talented and has contributed immensely to the everyday iconography of style. Plus I think Debra and Edith would have an amazing conversation together and I’d learn so much from just listening to them.
3. What advice do you have for aspiring stylists today?
Get your foundational training—whether it’s fine arts, art history, fashion design, designing for TV/film/print—if you are thoroughly trained, you can work in any aspect of the field.
4. Who are your (heroes) in real life?
People who quietly do good things
5.What is your greatest extravagance?
6. Tell me about what you’re wearing & what is your go to outfit?
Personally, I don’t have go-to outfits (see number 11 below). Having said that, I help many clients create go-to outfits that work for them and their unique set of current circumstances.
For the launch of the #sustainable #upcycle #perfect exhibit, I wore my vintage cowgirl shirt to support the idea of a sustainable closet. If you have pieces you love, take care of them and wear them over and over. My shirt is in great shape even though it’s 18 years old (!!). Though I wear it infrequently, each time I do, I feel so confident and strong in it. I paired it with a turtleneck for the first time ever because I love that turtlenecks+blouses are having a moment. Wearing my beloved cowboy boots would have been too expected, so instead, I chose black biker boots and cropped raw-hem blue jeans to give the top a bit of an edge. I finished the whole look with my silver ‘birdie on a branch’ earrings. For this outfit, it was go big and go bold with every element, but by keeping the color palette narrow and dark, the final product was not overwhelming or gaudy.
7. Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
In my perfect world…
8.What’s the quality you most like in a human?
9. What do you consider your greatest achievement?
My relationships with my husband and 3 children
10. What is your motto?
Every day is different
11. If you could name one goal for your business or career what would it be?
My goal as a personal wardrobe stylist: Taking care of other women and helping them to recognize and express all of their unique and beautiful qualities