To say that Natalia Hacerola is simply a dedicated person would be an understatement. Yes, she’s a dedicated yoga instructor who takes her passion for the practice wherever she goes, but these days she’s also the creator of PranaMaker wrap art. Hacerola started PranaMaker, a line of hand-painted wrap art and dresses, two years ago and hasn’t looked back. With no sewing involved, the flowing pieces of fabric can be worn in a number of different ways. Her pieces are meant to serve as an alternative to the standard look we are so used to seeing in athletic wear, but they have evolved into so much more, ranging from athletic wear to everyday wear to maternity staples and more. Hacerola has even been fortunate enough to fit a few for wedding gowns!
After chatting with Hacerola , we couldn’t help but feel inspired by her energy, spirit and enthusiasm. It’s easy to see why those who know her say she puts more into her wraps than just a bit of color and a sense of style.
What got you into this idea of wrap making and why do you love it so much?
My mom was a textile designer when I was a child. She was an avid fabric collector as well. I would go to the remnants bin and collect pieces and I was always really into wrapping myself. A few years ago I had to clean out my mom’s house and just with her fabric scraps, I called a few of my friends that are into photography and asked them to photograph me doing yoga on my roof in these wrap designs. I wanted to create something that was elegant and athletically accessible to people.
What makes these wraps unique?
I wanted to find this place where you could have something that you could perform on stage in because it’s so beautiful or you could show up to a wedding in, but you could show up to these fancy events on your bicycle, or you could run there and be sweaty and work with fabric that wouldn’t show the sweat and you would just be ready to go into this elegant event.
How long have you been doing this?
I made my first collection two years ago.
And is your business continuing to grow?
Yes, developing a business is a long process, though. I am fortunate enough to have business training, so I know that you have to really plan forward. I’d love to do this full time and I’m doing everything to make that happen. I am in three boutiques in Maui and I’m selling all over the world from my Etsy site, it’s an incredibly empowering tool.
I read on your Etsy bio that you design to empower the wearer…what does this mean exactly?
A major critique of the fashion industry is that essentially it promotes one body type. This idea that somebody else says this is the ideal silhouette and you have to fit into it can be so limiting to people. I wanted to create something that obliterated that concept. It’s very empowering to have a piece that says your beautiful all the time. It’s this idea that you can have this piece that you can wear through your whole pregnancy, you can wear it after your pregnancy, you can carry your baby in it.
I got the feel that your business is essentially a celebration of womanhood. Is this intentional?
I don’t limit it to women. My little sister has guy friends who take the brown ones I make and the khaki green ones I make, and make these really funky tops and wear them. More than a celebration of womanhood, it’s a celebration of the creative spirit that’s inside of anyone. My pieces are giving them tools to express their creativity.
What is your clientele like?
While I had this athletic focus, maternity is a bigger current portion of my clientele. There are three phases in life when people change their spending habits and spend more and that’s when they get married, when they buy a house, and when they get pregnant. People that buy from me are also very creative. They love the idea of being able to throw something on and have it look different every time. They want to wear something that is a show-stopper. They are more creative and individualistic.