Parisian chic; while those who have 'got' it might attribute it to je ne sais quoi, Maje Founder and Artistic Director Judith Milgrom manages to translate it into each and every collection – much to the delight of the brand’s scores of devotees. We caught up with the ultimate Parisienne to find out more about the original Maje woman...
My mother and grandmother always made everything themselves, from bread to curtains and clothes, which inspired my passion for craftsmanship, for everything that is homemade and handmade. I still think about this when I create each collection, especially with the first samples, which are all made in the ateliers here in my office. Some of the Bohemian details of my early collections also come from my Moroccan roots.
From a very early age I was making dresses for my dolls from my grandmother’s fabric scraps. I also remember stealing my grandfather’s shirt to customise it; that was the first time I ever wore one of my own creations and probably why, to this day, I still love basic white shirts so much.
My family has always been my anchor and the most important thing in my life. By the time I finished school my sister had already set up Sandro so I started working with her, always keeping in mind that I wanted to create my own brand. After a couple of years, it felt like the right time to go ahead with my own project so I left Sandro and set up Maje with my brother Alain in 1998. We didn’t really agree on a particular woman; I just created my collections according to my tastes.
The ultimate Maje accessory? It has to be the M Bag. "The M bag, to me, is a must have," attests Judith. "It comes in many colours, so each to their own!"
She is an asserted woman who accepts her femininity and takes pleasure in dressing herself - in other words: a modern woman. She is active, glamorous, modern and chic. She knows and loves fashion and therefore always finds the best pieces to suit her style. The Maje woman is free because she creates her own style.
Not necessarily. I design for all types of girls and women who come to Maje because the collections offer a range that goes from basic jeans, trousers and T-shirts to intricate and structured jackets and dresses.
Parisian chic is discrete and refined by definition. French style is based on non-ostentatious, well-cut basics, highlighted by staple accessories for a sophisticated yet relaxed look. It is concrete and centred around specific fashion codes. I think the secret is not trying to be stylish but knowing what you like and what suits you.
I would keep my vintage basics and mix them with this season’s designer pieces. For example, I would wear my vintage white shirt and twist it with a super-trendy designer blazer or trousers. I also love wearing my vintage shoes or clutches with the current season staples.
I have four! A beautiful white cotton shirt, a well-cut pair of trousers or jeans, a cashmere sweater and a fitted blazer.