Liv Flanagan has always been a maker. “As a child I’d organise baking stalls and lemonade stands,” she says. “[Then in] my teenage years I’d distress denim and stud vintage clothes and sell them at the local fashion markets.”
She eventually landed a job in public relations, and for the last five years has worked with retail and fashion clients. In November, Flanagan launched her own label: Maison Essentiele, a silk sleepwear brand that’s all about relaxed elegance.
“I love how women used to dress for sleep – the elaborate nighties and gowns – so definitely vintage sleepwear [was the inspiration], but with a modern twist,” she says. “My grandmother has a stunning collection of vintage silk nighties and robes.”
Flanagan chose silk for its natural properties that allow the body to breathe, keeping the body warm in cool weather and cool in hot weather. It’s also hypo-allergenic for those with sensitive skin.
The label’s spring/summer ’20 collection includes a racerback camisole matched with comfy, loose-fitting shorts, a curve-hugging slip dress and boyfriend pyjamas (wide-leg silk pants and a matching button-down shirt).
Everything is made with grade-A silk (there are three grades – A, B and C – of which A is considered the highest quality), with a density of 19 momme, which means pieces aren’t see-through.
The colour scheme is classic, with pieces in black, white, monochrome stripes, pale pink, aqua and champagne. And everything costs between $110 and $350.
Flanagan says she plans to expand the range this year, working with different natural materials. The label’s upcoming autumn/winter ’20 collection is inspired by summer travels through the Mediterranean.