FACES: Fashion Designer Stephanie Manganelli — Stowaway Collection
Necessity is the mother of invention.
Hoboken resident/fashion designer Stephanie Manganelli is the mother of the Stowaway Collection—a line created especially for women seeking flattering and fashion-forward maternity options.
The Stowaway Collection celebrates a woman’s newest and best accessory—her bump! You won’t find any tented silhouettes, empire-waists, or bows-on-top of belly here. Meanwhile, all items in the collection are manufactured in the USA and can be purchased at www.stowawaycollection.com
hMAG: What inspired you to take on maternity fashion?
Stephanie Manganelli: When I was pregnant, my bump popped quite early. I was so excited to go shopping for maternity clothes with my mother and we both left quite disappointed. The tented silhouettes were not flattering on me and the pieces that were flattering were high priced for cheap fabrics. The whole experience was underwhelming. My mom and I were immediately struck at how the process and assortment could be better.
h: Are there specific unmet needs in the market that Stowaway Collection addresses?
S: Pregnant women deal with a lot while growing a human, so we want to make it easier to dress and style a changing body. Stowaway was born with very strict tenets: ease of shopping (free shipping & returns on all US orders), flattering design (all pieces are body conscious showing off your bump), luxe fabrics (we work primarily with Supima Cotton Stretch), made in the USA (we produce in Brooklyn, NY). All women should be able to grow in style all 9 months long.
h: Clever name… how did you decide on “Stowaway”?
S: Having a child is such a momentous occasion and the journey to pregnancy could have been a long hard battle so we wanted to give the brand a light, fun name. I also felt that my baby was just that, a little stowaway. Someone I haven’t met yet but is coming along for the ride of life with me.
h: How long have you lived in Hoboken and how has Hoboken impacted your designs?
S: I moved from NYC to Hoboken in 2014 and have loved it ever since. Hoboken is a beautiful community that have welcomed my family and I. We love our trips to the Garden Street Market on Saturdays and coffee runs to BWE. Hoboken’s fashion is cosmopolitan and many people commute into the city so we wanted to make sure we use not only luxe fabrics, but also comfortable fabrics that stretch well. Even though it’s such a short commute, it had to be something you can wear all day long.