WHAT DO YOU DO?
I have spent the majority of my life studying ballet. I fell in love with modern dance when a professor at the University of California, Santa Barbara had us performing barefoot in the pacific coast sand, dancing to drums and crashing waves. My soul comes alive when I am dancing and I will always stay true to that part of me - that spark is always burning. In 2007 I started a blog, Amateur Couture, which celebrated the relationship between art and fashion. It was both successful and fulfilling. I hope to reinvent that blog someday as I am always dreaming up new ideas. For now, you can see what things are inspiring me on my Pinterest or Tumblr page.
Today, you’ll find me dancing in the kitchen with my two daughters, Ginger (4) and Frances (1). I feel fortunate to be able to stay home with them, and we fill our days with music, make-believe, dance parties, books and lots of art. I am trying my best to raise CONFIDENT, free thinking, passionate and intelligent girls. Being a mother has changed me - actually, it makes me grow. I am proud of them. I am proud of myself.
Early in my twenties, I was splurging on skincare when I barely had enough money for groceries or gas. Taking care of my skin is my favorite way to pamper myself, and I love the ritual of it. Several years ago, I stumbled on a video of acclaimed facialist, Isabelle Bellis, demonstrating the way she washes her face. It completely changed my approach to cleansing. “ Treat your face like silk,” she explains, in a lulling voice. Since then I have.
On a tray next to my bathroom sink, you’ll find my favorite skin care products, including Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel. Massage this chamomile and rose scented balm into your skin and it melts into a luxurious oil, emulsifying into a milk once you add water. Pumpkin enzymes mildly exfoliate, vitamins restore and oil soothes (it really does it all). My love affair with Oskia began two years ago when it was only available in the UK. Any friend or family member traveling to London would pick it up for me. In December it finally became available in the US through Net-a-Porter.
My latest discovery is Kypris Antioxidant Dew, a potent, free radical-fighting drink for your face. It is the ultimate base layer, leaving your face feeling nourished, dewy and radiant. It's fully loaded with antioxidants and 26 active natural ingredients! It’s safe to say it's worth the splurge.
One peek in my vanity and you’ll see I stay loyal to Chanel cosmetics, but my base is Chantecaille Just Skin Tinted Moisturizer with SPF 15. The glowing finish it leaves on the skin is simply gorgeous. Your skin but better. Who wouldn’t want that?! I’ve also accumulated quite the collection of Chanel nail polish; it is a little piece of luxury that is affordable and really adds to your overall look. I find it relaxing to do my own nails.
My husband, Matt, and I moved into our 1960s ranch three years ago and decided that in both remodeling and decorating we would stay true to the era of the house, but throw in our own unique spin. Last summer we knocked down a wall to create a large open space. We love how bright it is with all the windows and glass doors. One of our first purchases was a Jonathan Adler sputnik chandelier which we hung above our Matthew Hilton table. It’s now my favorite part of the house and I love that on warm days it opens up to our outdoor living space.
Ginger loves painting so we have a lot of her art framed throughout the house. We also have an offbeat photograph of David Bowie that hangs proudly in our living room. Matt and I love rock 'n' roll culture, so you’ll find little touches of that throughout our space. I always keep fresh flowers around and I enjoy having an assortment of Diptyque candles on hand. Another thing I cherish is our fireplace filled with white candles that I light up once the kids are asleep. As I light them, I take the time to reflect on the day. This nightly habit brings happiness and good vibes to our home.
My style is simple, effortless and relaxed. Simple but with an edge. You’ll usually find me in denim, a Ragdoll LA tee, a pair of cool boots and maybe a leather jacket. In the summer I live in vintage Levi cutoffs or sheer bohemian dresses. I love mixing soft/pretty pieces with something a bit hard. That juxtaposition really appeals to me. My closet is a tight edit of quality pieces, mostly in a muted color palette. In the morning I walk into my closet and grab something quickly. With the girls being so young, I don't have a ton of time, so I like pieces that go together and are easy to mix and match. Right now I am really into dainty pieces of jewelry, which I keep in Skultuna brass containers and trays. I also keep a ceramic bowl filled with my BuDhaGirl intention bracelets. As I slide them on in the morning I affirm my intentions. As I take them off at night I reflect on my gratefulness. This ritual slows me down before the craziness of the day begins. Intentions can transform you because they help you reach your goals and give your mind a purpose or plan. I always start my stack with “ FOCUS ON THE GOOD,” or “stay present to the current experience, the now / the most important moment.”
- As told to Preservation
Maria Fay photographed at her home in Des Moines, Iowa by Nicole Lorenson