EVERY DALB WOMAN HAS A UNIQUE STORY TO TELL
SUCCESS, CHALLENGES AND STYLE FROM REMARKABLE WOMEN
Ana Rubeli is equally a visual creator and a history preserver. She has embraced her passion for architecture and particularly for old buildings and transformed it into a modern world encyclopedia. You’ll love her stories on cities, neighborhoods or houses and you’ll be the first to sign up for her charming events.
''A whole new universe opened up - Ana as a cultural storyteller, purely based on passion.''
ON THE DRAMATIC CARREER SWITCH FROM A CORPORATE JOB TO A DISCOVERER AND STORYTELLER FOR HISTORIC BUILDINGS
I have always been a curious person, constantly asking myself what stories lay around hidden by walls or by mere surfaces. My corporate job has only stirred my passion for discoveries, as I am an actuary seeking to calculate probabilities and to find the expected value of buildings and lives as a whole. Therefore, the mathematics behind my actuarial knowledge can go hand-in-hand with the mathematics behind historical buildings and heritage. I was eager to document and to minimize the probability that our national architectural heritage would perish, would disappear. And this opened up a whole new universe - Ana as a cultural storyteller, purely based on passion. I have also backed up my passion with a master in Heritage and Cultural Resources at the Faculty of History at the Bucharest University, getting my third major after finalizing my first two majors more than 13 years ago: actuarial and communication.
''Bucharest has suffered a lot, especially during the communist decades, and my mission is to restore the emotional connection between its inhabitants and its ruined but beautiful buildings.''
ON HER CURRENT WORKPLACE AND BIGGEST CHALLENGES
My current workplace is actually the street, the city as a whole. I love wandering the streets and exploring the unknown stories of historical houses. I like the fact that I can document my discoveries while I walk around with my children. It was especially easy when they were babies, but we adapt the rhythm and the places we visit depending on their preferences, as well. I believe the biggest challenge is uncovering the beauty beyond decay and beyond the sad stories that lay at every corner. Unfortunately, Bucharest has suffered a lot, especially during the communist decades, and my mission is to restore the emotional connection between its inhabitants and its ruined but beautiful buildings.
ON BALANCING THE WORKLOAD WITH A FULFILLING FAMILY LIFE
I work during nights when I am the most creative and I have a tremendous flow of ideas. I am lucky as I have always been a night owl and I have had plenty of energy during the night. Therefore, I spend my daytime with my kids (walking, in the park, in the streets, taking always one of them in meetings with me, in museums, exhibitions and so on) and the night-time creating, thinking, writing, “working”. This is our equilibrium for the moment.
ON HER DEFINITION OF FEMINITY
I think femininity changes not only with time, but also in relation to the subject. There are women who feel femininity in different ways and who master femininity so differently, yet so beautifully. For me, femininity in 2023 means being able to walk with grace, with your back straight, displaying delicacy through. It is embodied by silk, by pastel colors, by a floral perfume. By care and by a soothing voice. By humming a silent song through a blowing wind, while birds are chirping smoothly.
ON HOW MATERNITY HAS CHANGED HER STYLE
It has definitely changed it. Actually, my description of femininity is 100% influenced by my feelings as a mother. And I realize now I have depicted a scenery when I drink a latte in Cismigiu park while both my kids are sleeping. And I feel contempt, joy, perfection. After giving birth to my boy I remember I was more attached to blueish and beige and black clothes. And now, since my baby girl was born, I have updated my wardrobe with pink, orange, yellow. This influence is fascinating and surprising.
And even though my time has radically shrunken while having kids, nowadays I feel an urge to dress more delicately, to spend more time in front of the mirror, to care more for myself. My kids need to see me as their beautiful mother. Therefore, I see this as an extra bonus of my maternity period, as I have uncovered bits and pieces of myself which I didn’t think existed before.
ON HER GO-TO COMBINATION IN TERMS OF CONFORTABLE LOOKS
The winning combo for a comfortable walk in the park and in the historical neighborhoods, especially during this spring, is a pair of woolen pants and an extra-large sweater or a shirt. With a beige trench on top. However, whenever I organize musical and cultural events in heritage houses, I love wearing elegant dresses and hats. I love natural materials, silk, wool, bamboo and linen and I love adding either vintage or contemporary jewelry (with a twist) to my attire.
''My description of femininity is 100% influenced by my feelings as a mother''
ON HER MOST CHERISHED WARDROBE ITEM
A ruby-necklace from my aunt who was a great pianist. It is a piece from my personal heritage which I adore: it has a beautiful story coming from the Czech Republic while my aunt was concerting there and reaching Bucharest and finally my closet. My aunt has also given me timeless and precious wool coats with embroidery depicting Romanian national motifs: they are my second-most beloved items in my wardrobe.
ON A FEMININE FIGURE THAT INSPIRES HER
I love Grace Kelly, all her movies and her life story.
ON ANY INSTAGRAM PAGE THAT SHE WOULD RECOMMEND
ON THE BEST PIECE OF ADVICE THAT SHE EVER RECEIVED
Drink plenty of water. Haha, joke aside, one piece of advice that I keep receiving via multiple channels (friends or even random people on the street talking to me while I hold my baby in my arms): keep your children in your arms as much as you can and spend as much time with them now, because later, when they grow up, they might reject these infinite flows of affection that you will be eager to give them. And it will be too late. Very sad yet powerful.
ON PODCASTS OR BOOKS THAT HAVE MADE AN IMPRESSION ON HER LATELY
This year is Monica Lovinescu’s centenary, therefore I recommend her memoirs. After reading her Journal I have realized the importance of her work at the Free Europe radio station, I have felt numbness and despair, while also feeling hope, hope that there were a few people (among whom Monica and her husband, Virgil Ierunca) who made their voice heard beyond the iron curtain. I believe her books are essential for our culture and for the younger generation.