Mariah K. Lyons
What inspired you to create Astara and where did the name come from?
As with many things, we create what we need along our own path. I'm very sensitive to EMFs and was finding it challenging being connected to technology all day long. I was having health issue arise at that time and I found that connection to the earth and grounding was very healing. The idea came through to create a shoe that had the same healing frequency of the earth- and Astara was born. The name kept coming to me in meditation for about 2 years, and it wasn't really until after I filed all the paperwork that I looked up different meanings of it, as it held a particular frequency to me. It is related to Astara-The Celtic Goddess of Spring and Astarte-which is another name for the Egyptian Goddess Isis. To me, it is a coming together of earth and sky, worlds meeting.
How has quarantine impacted your life and what are some practices you have found to be helpful during this time?
Quarantine has been challenging to my wandering spirit. This is the most time I've spent in one place, I'm usually traveling a lot for work, study and play so I've had to learn to be in one place again. Which has been hard but actually has been nice in many ways. Each day and week is truly energetically unique and I'm letting myself feel however I feel day by day. The ease of structure has been good in many ways, especially in simply tuning in to how my energy level is on each day without judging or pushing myself. Some days I'll go for a long run and move the energy, other days it's ok if I can barely get a light stretch in. Taking the pressure off. My morning rituals and practice of meditation and intuitive movement has been so grounding and my husband and I always take a walk around our neighborhood every night as the sun goes down. Also breath-work, kundalini, crystal meditations, bath rituals and self-healing meditations have been super supportive.
What is your hope for this world post-COVID? How do you think it will change the fashion industry specifically?
My hope for the world moving forward is that we truly reawaken and come back into harmony with one another and nature. We've become completely out of sync with the natural rhythms of the earth, especially in the fashion industry. The collective demand for "quick and cheap" has created such a devastating imbalance in the ecosystem. One incredible thing to witness has been been the beautiful environmental effects that have taken place over the last few months, our oceans becoming cleaner and the skies clearing up. I hope that designers begin to create differently, with full closed-loop sustainability in mind and consumers choose to use their power of choice and support small earth supportive brands.
As a small business owner, how have you dealt with the unease of the past few months?
I've really been looking at this time as a way to reset and innovate. We had to let go of the stress and disappointment around canceled productions and launches and just surrender to the moment. We've been able to shift and put the focus on what our community needs at this time. Hopefully will all come out of this stronger than before.
During these next few months, what should we be focusing on in terms of our frequencies and energies?
The eclipses this year are major energetic shake ups, and the energy continues to peak until about July 4th, with another major surge around the end of the year. The next few months are about allowing ourselves to find stability and grounding within, even when things are continuing to shift and seem uncertain. So that no matter what, we can be the eye of the storm. By deeply instilling our self-care practices, letting the old fall away and staying open to new ways of being and experiencing the world, we are able to shift into this new paradigm. Fluidity is key and letting ourselves ride the current and waves, again finding that space of peace and balance within.
Where do you draw inspiration from?
Nature, art, music, dance, architecture, travel
How would you describe your personal style and what is your go-to outfit?
Eclectic classic. I love more classic fitted 60s/70s shapes and earth toned pieces, but also picking up pieces on my travels and vintage finds. Go-to outfit is either a silk or cotton jumpsuit or high-waisted jeans with a cashmere sweater, Astara sandals, and simple gold jewellery.
What are you looking forward to most post-quarantine? (Couldn’t help but ask - we’re getting so excited ourselves!)
I'm so looking forward to traveling, but I also am really looking forward to being in community again! Missing so many of my friends and family and good big hugs from people I love and people I meet!