Published: January 25, 2016 • Editorial / Our muse

Maya Jankelowitz

CITY: NYC.

OCCUPATION: Owner of Jack's Wife Freda Restaurant.

FREE TIME: Family, yoga, food, movies.

WEEKEND PLANS: Family and food!

DREAM: Inner peace for myself and my little boys.

TUNES: Cocktail soundtrack.

READS: Currently reading "How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and How to Listen So Kids Will Talk" - it works for talking to anyone!

EATS: Kale Greek salad and our new breakfast grain bowl which I eat everyday. It has red quinoa, raw kale, grilled tomato, avocado, radish, spaghetti squash and eggs - all in a bowl - So yum! :)

ES FAVORITES: The FW Vera Slip Dress, the Nina Kimono, the Eva Sweater Dress, Florence and Clyde Pant - looking forward to mixing them all up!

I first stumbled across Maya on Instagram - a friend was traveling in NYC, and posted a photo of a beautiful dish and these adorable sugar packets from her restaurant, Jack's Wife Freda. I clicked through to the feed, and fell straight up in love with Maya's sense of humor, the excitement of her growing business, busy life in the city, and impeccable style. She was like the dream woman I always wanted to be - bustling around NY, creating beautiful food, surrounded by smiling people, and wearing evening gowns over jeans like it's no big deal. In reality, I would crack after more than a week in the city and would promptly stain or rip any kind of gown that comes close to me, but I am so glad I can vicariously live this fantasy out through her.

Maya and her husband own and run the popular, chic, and yet still welcoming and familiar-feeling restaurant Jack's Wife Freda. The food is vibrant and colorful, ever-changing, truly delicious, and hard to define - New York Mag has dubbed it "South African Israeli Jewish Grandmother Cuisine." Although everything I've tried has been incredible, I have to admit I can't stop thinking about the g-dang fries of all things. In addition to running two successful locations of Jack's Wife Freda, Maya is also a mother of two (read more about her family here) and a veritable style icon. Maya's magic is that she truly wears whatEVER she wants, regardless of convention, season, or occasion - and her confidence and sincerity are so visible that she pulls it off flawlessly. Seeing her dress encourages me to trust my instincts - authenticity always looks good. 

Maya wears the Arlo Sweater in Charcoal, the FW Florence Pant in Stone, the Sullivan Sweater in Camel, and the FW Vera Slip Dress in Rust.

Note: Some items in this blog post were a part of a past collection and may no longer be available.

The next time you're in New York, go eat at Jack's Wife Freda. In the meantime, follow along with Maya and Dean on the internet. You're going to be glad you did:

Jack's Wife Freda
224 Lafayette Street, SoHo
50 Carmine Street, West Village

Photographed by Henry Hargreaves for Elizabeth Suzann.

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