Designer Elena Popescu lives in a world of colour and wonder. She grew up with a love of drawing but only decided to follow her passion of starting a business after 14 years of working in the banking industry - and lucky for us, she did.
Marabeca was founded in 2015 and the collection features amazing details, colours and whimsical drawings. We are so proud to carry her line at Beyond Scarf and if you’re a fan of bright but soft colours, cute designs and fun patterns, you’ll want to check it out for yourself.
We asked Elena to share all about her inspiration, her design process and her lovable dog Otto.
What is your name?
Elena Popescu but my family and close friends call me Ileana.
Where are you from and where do you currently live?
I’m from Romania and I currently live in Bucharest.
What is one thing interesting / unique / quirky about you?
I guess the most interesting fact about me is that I do not have any drawing/ arts studies. So, drawing was just a hobby for me. Ah, and I also have a dog, Otto, a crazy, lovable Miniature Schnauzer.
Who is your favorite artist?
I do not have a favorite artist as there are a lot of special and important artists. I’m interested in both art, design (clothing, product, interior), architecture so I’m following a mix of genres. For example, now I love what the Haas Brothers are doing in terms of shapes and colors.
Tell us a bit about your life before becoming a designer. Where do you get your inspiration?
The funny thing is that I ‘ve majored in Business Law and the past 14 years were spent working in banking industry. I’ve been drawing since as far I can remember but only as a hobby until I have decided to follow my dream and start my own business. I guess what helped a lot in shaping me as an artist was the fact that both my parents and also my brother are architects, so I grew up surrounded by art books, paintings and a lot of theory about colors, textures and fabrics.
I draw the inspiration for my scarves from an eclectic range of sources: nature patterns, children tales, objects and funny life moments.
What materials do you use and why?
Modal, cashmere and silk. Nothing compares to natural fibers when it comes to draping and feel on skin.
Tell us a bit about your design process
I’m always drawing on paper by using a mix of techniques: colored pencils, ink markers and watercolors. Each design is constructed from layers of original hand drawn images mixed through modern digital techniques. There is no traditional symmetry or repeated prints as I like to give the eyes the chance to wander across the final design and discover the story through new shapes and characters.
Tell us a bit about your manufacturing process and why you chose to produce that way. What is your favorite detail of your pieces?
All scarves are printed in Como, Italy at a manufacturer with over 70 years of tradition in scarves printing. It is quite an experience to visit such a place and see old techniques combined with the modern ones. My scarves are all digitally printed as it is the only technique that can reproduce in high details the hand drawings and unlimited number of colors.