Wise Woman Wednesdays: Cara Marie Piazza

Photo by Laura Cervini

Photo by Laura Cervini

There's only one word that truly communicates the experience of seeing Cara Marie Piazza's one-of-a-kind, botanical-dyed fabrics and garments— "enchanting". It's fitting, then, that Cara's brand Calyx Intimates draws inspiration from the storied practice of witches soaking their clothes and undergarments in their powerful potions— to be sure, there is something otherworldly (and yet, deeply terrestrial) about Cara's work. The way she transforms commonplace plant matter into breathtaking patterned textiles is nothing short of magic. We caught up with Cara to ask her about this mystical process and her path to it.

How were you first drawn to your art?
I was first drawn to natural dyes when in college in London. A wonderful woman came and taught us how to use onion skins as dye and I was instantly hooked on the magic.

What does it mean to you to live creatively & authentically?
It means to create without an audience in mind. Live wildly, make mistakes, and admit (and know) your faults. 

How would you describe your aesthetic?
Truthfully, I think my aesthetic is always in flux and hard to define. I have, however, been called an organic Jackson Pollack… I would say aesthetically at the moment I'm inspired by minimal abstraction, and irreverent gestural forms.

What’s on your current listening rotation?
SZA, Kaytranada, and Aerial East’s version of “Song to the Siren”.

What’s one place you can always return to for inspiration?
My feet. When I’m feeling stuck, I let my feet take me for a walk and they always lead me to a new nook, a forgotten book store, or an exhibition that gets my ideas moving again.

What does a typical day in your life look like?
Frantic! I wake up, collect myself, kiss my partner and then make coffee, and then I'm off to the studio. I’m often running between my studio, my apartment and my seamstress, taking client meetings, doing flower pick-ups, teaching classes, taking power naps, and going on research wanders. All in no particular order. 

What does the idea of a “wise woman” mean to you? Who represents this for you?
A wise woman is a woman who follows her truth no matter the cost. Her gut leads her no matter the obstacles, and she isn’t afraid to love and work and cry and fail and pick herself back up again. She understands the cycles. My mama.

What icon or totem would you choose to represent you and your life?
The Venus of Willendorf, or Baba Yaga… it could go both ways….

“I feel best when I am surrounded by…” 
Pillows! And friends. Preferably pillows and friends…

What wise woman should we interview next?
Andrea Gentl! 

A million thanks to Cara for taking time to do this interview with us! Find her and her stunning work on Instagram, at Calyx Intimates, and at Calyx Apothecary.