Thursday Q&A with Marilou Moles
Marilou Moles is the founder and creative director of the fashion blog Twenty York Street and has recently launched SKYFALL BLUE, a new digital web development, marketing and social-media boutique agency. She has been a certified fitness and yoga instructor for more than 10 years and is brand ambassador for THANN Canada.
OCS: Who are your style icons?
MM: I tend to gravitate towards the simple, yet elegant, chic icons such as Kate Beckinsale, Rachel Weisz and Diane Kruger. Classy, like Kate Middleton, is always my style and though it is lovely, I feel I need to venture outside my comfort zone. Ask me again in 2 months.
OCS: What’s on your bedside table?
MM: My baby — my Mac Air, which has been one the most precious Christmas gifts I received. Beside it is a pile of fashion magazines and a photo of me and my love, in Mexico years ago.
OCS: Best home accessory?
MM: My Apple TV. Changed my life.
OCS: Best recent fashion find?
MM: The Asian-inspired obi-belted black and nude dress I found at BCBG. It was quite a head turner at the Ottawa Fashion Week so I think I made the right choice!
OCS: Whom would you invite for dinner if you could choose anyone in the world?
MM: My father. For many great reasons.
OCS: You can see the debut of any piece of music in history. What would it be?
MM: I would love to be at the centre of a major music fusion, a night of orchestra and rock ‘n roll!
OCS: What’s your earliest memory?
MM: My birthdays. They were always grand, big ballroom gowns and a feast fit for a princess.
OCS: Your biggest fashion faux-pas, when, where and how?
MM: I don’t know what I was thinking but I thought I can get away with wearing black Lululemon yoga pants to work, with high heels! Curiously enough, people could actually tell they’re Yoga pants!
OCS: Proudest moments?
MM: I have very many proudest moments but the most recent one is launching my very own (public relations) company, SKYFALL BLUE, with my (former, no wait, still) boss and current partner Fadi Ghaby and Robert McCoy. It’s been a long time in the making but now it’s officially in business.
OCS: Favourite piece of furniture?
MM: It used to be this deep-red loveseat from Philip Van Leeuwen. I was quite proud of it, as it was one of my big-girl purchases!
OCS: Qualities you most admire in a person?
MM: Fierce loyalty, unmovable integrity and genuine humility. Courage and grace under fire also earns my respect.
OCS: With whom would you most like to work in your professional capacity?
MM: I think it would be great to work alongside Michelle Obama’s top Canadian designer, Jason Wu. But wouldn’t it be even more fabulous to be dressed by him?
OCS: Describe a perfect day off (it can be anywhere in the world).
MM: In a hammock, in between two coconut trees, on white sand/turquoise beach of my grandparent’s private island in the Philippines.
OCS: Favourite visual artist, living or dead?
MM: Leonardo da Vinci. A true genius, a brilliant painter, sculptor, inventor, engineer. He passed on in the 15th century, yet his work continues to be an inspiration.
OCS: Favourite local artist?
MM: Since fashion is both my work and my escape, I tend to spend a lot of time browsing through works of fashion photographers. Fortunately, I have had the pleasure of working and being friends with many talented local photographers such as Richard Tardif of Richard Tardif Photos (also SKYFALL BLUE’s chief photographer), Katia Pershin, Adam Pap, Arne Berg, Marc Lavoie, Andrew Balfour, Paul Couvrette and more. Perhaps one day, I can compile a portfolio of these artists shooting me, if they’ll give me that honour.
OCS: Best book you read in the past year?
MM: In light of his upcoming book, the Inferno, I’ve re-read Dan Brown’s Angels and Demons. I’m fascinated by that stuff.
OCS: Favourite food?
MM: My mother’s. She’s a very good cook and baker and sadly, I don’t think I was blessed with that gene.
OCS: Most-oft-played song on your iPod or MP3 player?
MM: James Blunt. I’m still somewhat in love with him — or at least his voice.
OCS: Wine, beer or both?
MM: Strictly wine. White at cocktail parties and events, red with friends and at home.
OCS: Mac or PC?
MM: I resisted it for so long as I was fond of my old-school PC but my CEO would have none of it, so MAC it is!
OCS: Fine dining or plain old diners?
MM: Fine dining. Any chance to play dress-up is always a fab bonus to a lovely dinner.
OCS: Best restaurant in Ottawa?
OCS: Person, place or thing that makes you proudest/happiest that you live in Ottawa?
MM: 1. My mentor and CEO Fadi Ghaby (both at THANN Canada and SKYFALL BLUE): Always innovative, always brilliant and ahead of the curve.
2. My Yoga guru (guru can be a thing, right?) Basia Going, owner of Adi Shesha Yoga Studio: Basia is all heart and is currently helping a Nepalese boy in need of a kidney transplant through an orphanage in Nepal.
3. Twenty York Street, our home: Every piece of furniture was designed and custom made, by hand, by my other half, Eric Meloche, a former racecar driver turned industrial designer turned engineer. It’s my urban oasis.
OCS: Fave blog or website?
MM: Aside from the new SKYFALL BLUE blog and some local Ottawa blogs, I have to say, I have a newfound appreciation for Twenty York Street this year. We’ve created it out of nothing and I still can’t believe that people stop me in the street to say: we know, follow and love your blog!
OCS: Twitter, Facebook or both?
MM: Both but I definitely play favourites. Twitter is like my BFF, gives me all the scoop, vite!
OCS: What’s your guilty pleasure?
MM: I hate to admit this but I’m usually late on the trendy TV show train. Lately, I’ve been obsessed with Gossip Girl. I know, I know!
OCS: Favourite place to spend time?
MM: At home. It’s in the centre of everything, right in the heart of the Courtyard, in the Byward Market with a view of the Peace Tower on one side and the steeple of the Notre Dame Basilica on the other. It’s very hard to leave once you’ve walked inside.
OCS: How would you like the world to remember you? What would your eulogist ideally say?
MM: I really wanted to leave a legacy, to make a difference in this world. I hope to be remembered as someone who did her best — with her craft, with her friends and with her family. One who really lived, laughed and loved!