Marianthe (Mahri) Bode, founder and owner of MAHRI in Manchester and Marblehead, passed away on Wednesday, 18 September at the Lahey Medical Center in Burlington. She was 75.
Mahri was born in Tuckahoe, NY on 2 May 1944 to Harriet and Achilles Anangnostis. Her father died when she was three at which point her mother moved Mahri and older brother Nicholas to Magnolia, MA where she formed some very close friendships. Harriet landed a job with JJ Jonas, a couture dress shop with stores in Magnolia and Palm Beach, FL so the family moved with the seasons, Magnolia in the summer and Palm Beach during the school year. When Mahri was in middle school, the family moved to Wellesley, MA with a better school system for Mahri and Nick. In high school Mahri excelled in art and design and later followed her friend, internationally known clothing designer Betsey Johnson, to Syracuse University to study jewelry design. At Syracuse she again excelled earning a BFA degree and winning numerous awards in design. After SU she went on to study with world renowned enamelist Earl Pardon at Skidmore College. Following Skidmore she continued her education at Indiana University earning a MFA in jewelry in the spring of 1969.
After IU Mahri moved to Essex, MA where her Mom was now living with her husband, Mahri’s stepdad, Berj Seron. To raise money to start her own business, Mahri started working as a waitress at the Sword & Shield, a local steakhouse her uncle had backed and that is where she met her future husband Bill Bode. A few months later in September she left the restaurant and started MAHRI. She set up a jewelry studio, acetylene torch included, in her living room and started making (forging) simple jewelry. Shortly Mahri was wholesaling to more than 50 stores in the Northeast. This was her passion but she wanted more so in 1973, with Bill’s help, she started a small retail shop with a potter called the WORKS. About two years later, again with her now husband Bill’s help, she opened MAHRI in downtown Manchester and never looked back. Initially she sold only jewelry all of which she made but in later years she doubled the size of the store and started carrying women’s clothing and giftware. In 1985 she opened MAHRI in Newburyport and 2003 MAHRI in Marblehead. Her daughter Aimee, having just left Bergdorf-Goodman in NYC as a buyer, joined the business in 2007 and expanded the clothing lines.
Mahri often said she ‘never worked a day’ after she started Mahri and she didn’t because when you LOVE what you do, it’s not work... and she did love it whether working in the stores or in her studio. Mahri was a founding member of the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington D.C. MAHRI stores in both the Manchester and Marblehead will continue to flourish and expand under daughter Aimee Bode Konevich’s watchful eye.
Mahri is survived by her husband Bill of 44 years, daughter Aimee Bode Konevich, her husband Michael, granddaughter Sophia, grandson William, brother’s-in-law Robert and Bruce Bode, sister-in-law Meg Bode-Everett and their spouses. In addition she is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews. She was pre-deceased by brother Nick Anagnostis.
There will a celebration of life with friends and family for Mahri on Saturday, 5 October. For details please call our Manchester store at 978-526-7241 or email email@example.com.