MY STORY

My name is Marie.

My name is Marie. I make my craft and live with my family in the Beskydy Mountains, the easternmost part of the Czech Republic. The Maya trademark represents products from my textile atelier.

It all began with my childhood in the Beskydy Mountains, where I would go blueberry picking with my mom not far from the sheep grazing in the green pastures above the Samčanka settlement in Staré Hamry. It was here, for the first time, that I observed the traditional way of processing wool, from washing, drying, carding and spinning to weaving rugs or knitting wool sweaters, caps and socks. My love for nature, natural materials and handicrafts became my lifelong passion and I still hear the sound of the spinning wheel and the pounding of the loom coming from a distance.

However, my professional career took me to Austria, Germany and Switzerland, where I used to work as a translator and interpreter of German. I made my living by working long hours interpreting business negotiations, but my love for handiwork and traditional crafts never left me in all that time. The turning point in my life was in 2015, when I was awarded a scholarship to complete my doctoral thesis in Applied Linguistics at the University of Wűrzburg. I intended to use my leisure time between intensive studies with handiwork and so I once again rediscovered the world of wool and fell absolutely in love with it. I learned to spin on the spinning wheel, I became a member of the Hand Spinners Guild in Germany, I took part in trade fairs, exhibitions and workshops for spinning, weaving and knitting. It was there that the idea to start my own textile atelier was born.

In 2017 my loom-made and knitted products were certified “Beskydy Original Products” by the Association of Regional Trademarks. Every year I take part in rug weaving workshops in the Czech Republic in one of the last working European gobelins manufactory in Valašské Meziříčí and tapestry weaving in both Jindřichův Hradec and Nikosia, Cyprus. During my global wanderings, I always visit local loom weaving manufacturers to learn more about traditional weaving techniques. I have seen magnificent carpets and rugs made by Tibetan refugees and by women weavers in Nepal, India, Sri Lanka and many places in Europe.

Closer observation of all the steps involved in wool processing and turning it into yarn for rug and cloth weaving led me to start breeding my own sheep for a period of time. Now I am focused mainly on processing raw wool and on both weaving and knitting textile products. My fascination with traditional craftsmanship and the processing of wool and other natural fibres of both animal and plant origin have led me to experiment with these materials. I am currently trying my luck with washing, carding and spinning camel hair to explore the possibilities of using it for weaving and knitting. All of this is coming about slowly and gradually, through trial and error, which resonates with my lifestyle – slow life with slow products.

I have found my path by dividing my time harmoniously between my career as a translator and interpreter and at the same time fulfilling my dream of opening a textile atelier, where I make and design slow products that bring joy and pleasure to people in our hectic times.

Currently I am working on my web site and getting my Maya e-shop ready to go. We can meet if you like at the Dyzajn Market in Prague, Meat Design in Ostrava or simply and directly in my atelier in the Beskydy Mountains. We will enjoy a delicious cup of coffee, slowly of course, and choose something just right for you or your home.

Yours Marie

Marie