Work to Home: Marysia Reeves’s Enviable L.A. Life
The swimsuit designer to the stars welcomes us into her sunny studio and cozy-chic family home
Chances are you’ve seen Marysia Reeves’s swimsuits before—her scalloped-edge bikinis and maillots have graced the pages of countless fashion magazines and are coveted by celebrities and style bloggers alike. For someone who’s spent her life inspired by the sea, a career in swimwear fashion makes total sense.
“Vacations were always to the beach somewhere warm: Turkey, Bulgaria…” recalls Reeves of growing up in Poland, where her love for the beach began at an early age. At age 14, she and her family moved to Delaware, where she practically lived in her swimsuit as a surfer and lifeguard. A sojourn in Los Angeles to attend L.A.’s Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising gave her a taste of the Pacific before she moved back east to live on Charleston, South Carolina’s hip Folly Beach with her husband, Nathaniel (whom she met at a surf shop at age 17). It was there in 2009 that Reeves started her eponymous swimwear line, Marysia Swim. “I saw a void in the marketplace for a fashion-driven, boutique swim brand that women could really connect to. Swimwear fits me as a person,” says Reeves. “The combination of my love for the ocean and fashion just made sense.” The success of the brand led the family of four to New York City for three years before yet another move—this time, trading their Little Italy loft for sunny Santa Monica, where Reeves set up headquarters for both her brand and home.
“Moving from New York, I wanted the space to have a lighter, breezier feel,” says Reeves of her design vision for her office and home. Just like her swim line, both environments are playful and comfortable. The office itself feels like a beach: its sisal carpet alluding to sand, its crisp white walls bright like a sunny day at the shore, the Knoll chair reminiscent of a sophisticated canvas beach lounger. Even Stephane Dessaint’s Ibiza 1 print Reeves compares to “a good old swimsuit that has been bleached by the sun; a little more muted and washed out.” On the day of our shoot, friend and fashion maven Aimee Song of the popular blog Song of Style (who also works as an interior designer) joined in on the fun.“ Aimee was one of the first bloggers I sent a swimsuit to. She’s so sweet,” says Reeves.
This sense of community was one of the things Reeves looked forward to most of their big move west. It was at her daughter’s new school that Reeves serendipitously met Sarah Rosenhaus, who would eventually whip the studio and home into warm bohemian bliss. “She told me she made bathing suits; I told her I was an interior designer,” recalls Rosenhaus.
Both women share a passion for midcentury design—Reeves cites her childhood furniture in Poland, while Rosenhaus’s portfolio is heavily influenced by the era. Naturally, some of modern furniture’s biggest names fill Reeves’s home, an airy rental walking distance from the beach. But with young children in mind, there’s plenty of accessible brands in the mix, such as the plush Moroccan rug from West Elm gracing the floors of the living room and the white Serena & Lily headboard in daughter Elle’s room. Colorful, big-brushstroke paintings by Sally King Benedict adorn the white walls throughout. The two met when they were both based in Charleston, and now Reeves is the proud owner of eight of her pieces. “I love Sally’s composition and colors,” says Reeves. “A lot of the pieces were gifts from her, [like] for the birth of my daughter or a present for our new home.”
Reeves mentions the additional living space as one of the biggest upsides of the cross-country move, citing the peaceful guest room as a luxury and her favorite room in the house. “I love how cozy and feminine it is,” says Reeves. Another perk? The home’s proximity to the water—a boon for devotees of her swimwear line as well, who are sure to benefit season after season from Reeves’s proximity to her eternal muse.