Bespoke tiaras with a carnival-esque twist

Headpieces for revellers in search of a fancy flourish

Each Magnetic Midnight headpiece is handmade in Columbia
Each Magnetic Midnight headpiece is handmade in Columbia

“I’m fascinated by ethnic dress and adornment, beautiful textiles, celebratory dances and carnival – any kind of festivity and extravagance,” says Colombian designer Lucia Echavarria. The New York-based founder of accessories label Magnetic Midnight, Echavarria creates bespoke headpieces (from $800) inspired by everything from art history and architecture to flowers and the cosmos. Using a diverse range of materials – straw, feathers, velvet, beads and mirrors – Echavarria creates crowns “that fit the wearer’s style, but also a specific occasion,” she says of her statement-making tiaras.

The Peacock and Feather headpieces showcase brightly coloured feathers, beads and mirrors
The Peacock and Feather headpieces showcase brightly coloured feathers, beads and mirrors
Advertisement

The name Magnetic Midnight refers to the time of day when the magnetic poles align and auroras can be seen in the sky. Much like these rare, beautiful lights, Echavarria’s tiaras provide flashes of colour and brilliance. Her passion for fancy dress began in childhood and took flight after a trip to Iran, where Echavarria visited a mosque inlaid with intricate mirror mosaics. “I was struck with the idea of making a headpiece out of similar mirrors,” says Echavarria. “That original idea evolved into my first collection, Persepolis.” Colour theory plays into her work, too, with many pieces inspired by the art of Josef Albers and Mark Rothko. 

The Shooting Star and Sun tiaras employ embroidery, gold ribbon and pom-poms
The Shooting Star and Sun tiaras employ embroidery, gold ribbon and pom-poms
The pom-poms used in the headpieces are made by the Wayuu tribe
The pom-poms used in the headpieces are made by the Wayuu tribe

After a theme or colour scheme has been selected by the client (an archive is available for inspiration), Echavarria sets about sketching a tiara that is realised in full glorious three-dimensional colour, two to four weeks later. The vibrant collection includes the Peacock and Feather models, showcasing bountiful arrays of brightly coloured feathers, beads and mirrors. The Shooting Star and Sun tiaras employ embroidery, gold ribbon and pom-poms, while the iridescent Mermaid style features intricately woven palm leaf, mother-of-pearl, cowry shells and coral.

Advertisement

Each headpiece is handmade in Colombia, using a wire frame made by a family outside of Bogotá, while iraca palm leaf is woven by artisans in Usiacurí to create vibrant swirls and patterns. Embellishments such as pom-poms made by the Wayuu tribe, vivid embroidery and handmade presentation boxes are also sourced locally.

See also

Advertisement
Loading