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Sunroom Q&A: Leana Zuniga of Electric Feathers

Meet designer Leana Zuniga of Electric Feathers, a collection that has been a longtime Sunroom favorite for the infinite wearability and playfully creative twists on the expected. To learn a bit more about the inspirations & story behind the line, we caught up with Leana for a Sunroom Q&A on her Peruvian background, the limitless potential of functionality, and the happy-making potential of clothing that "makes you glide!"


Where and how does one of your designs start? Would love to learn more about how ideas are sparked!
My parents were both artists and my Peruvian Abuelita (grandmother) was a seamstress who was never not sewing. They nurtured curiosity and creativity in everything they did, and the act of making something out of nothing was instilled; pieces of clothing, fabrics, and objects were all perceived as possibilities. 
[Electric Feathers was borne of] exploring all of the different ways things could bend or tie or be cut into something other than the obvious form it existed in. From there, it has opened more doors and new inventions. The idea has been to create pieces that can function elegantly in multiple or infinite ways, and that there's a secret potential to all of these pieces. It's an exciting process for me that I find so satisfying. 

There's also such a playfulness in your pieces—what feeling do you want to communicate through your collections? 
I love beautiful, elegant clothing and seeing very well dressed people (head to toe) is becoming very rare these days. I love when clothing has a tickling effect to the spirit, cheering you up and giving you a swing in your step. Pieces with a strength, that turn your walk into a glide, and can make you feel like an exotic bird with a sense of joy.
Is there a piece of creative advice you rely on or return to? 
To continue being waste-conscious, working with unique natural fabrics, creating special coveted pieces, utilizing clean finished sewing techniques, and creating pieces made-to-last that hopefully people will treasure and pass down for generations.


What's the most unexpected or unusual source of inspiration for you? 
I don’t know if it is exactly unusual or unexpected, but growing up in both 80's LA & 90's NYC when MUSIC had such an impact on our lives. We dressed so outrageously and the clubs were full of life; at that tie, most of the sub-cultures were intertwined and the freedom was extraordinary and inspired. It was an incredibly creative environment with infinite possibility...I love bringing a modern interpretation of the essence of those glitzy, glamorous times to the now.


How do you get out of a creative rut when you're feeling stuck?

Ideas never run out! It's quite the opposite, the constraints are not so much creative…they exist within the confines of having a business. Dancing has always been a a great release for breakthrough and transcendence.


What's next for you or what are you most excited about?  
Summer sunshine! Working on our new accessories has been so much fun and I can’t wait for it to be ready. There are some very exciting projects ahead...I will let you know when the cat is out of the bag !


Rapid Fire! 
1. I start my mornings with...20 minute TM, a delicious smoothie (spinach, wild blueberries, avocado, ground flaxseed, hemp milk, a generous scoop of maca root, and one date), Brian Eno Ambient Series, Marconi Union "Weightless," and Susumu Yokota.

2. A book I recommend to everyone: The Wisdom of Insecurity by Alan Watts

3. An unexpected source of inspiration for me is...Lighting, and how it affects our mood and creative environment. 

4. My favorite escape for a long weekend or staycation getaway: I love everything Kenny Osehan is doing with the Shelter Social Club, such a special getaway (@sheltersocialclub) & Sara Moffat’s L’Ecole Des Beau Arts Studio in Santa Fe is beyond inspiring and worth a whole weekend trip to Santa Fe (@ldbastudio)

5. Three things always in my bag are: Keys Avo Gel, a tape measure, small curved scissors.

6. The songs or playlist I'm listening to on repeat:  All of the Cinematic Orchestra’s works, Zhané- Sending my Love (turn it up loud — so good !) Lomboy- Loverboy & Like me, The Soundtrack from Hable Con Ella by Alberto Iglesias, The Damned-A Portrait

7. My beverage of choice: Pea Leaf Tea, it turns the most incredible colors from purple to turquoise taste is subtle, clean & earthy.

8. Where I'm traveling this year...Mexico City, NY, Paris

Shop Electric Feathers at Sunroom