Sonia Carrasco

Barcelona-based contemporary luxury designer, Sonia Carrasco, is a fashion critic. And the award-winning designer is channeling her disdain for the trade toward helping correct it, by creating sustainable apparel that combats environmental impacts from the fashion industry, according to her eponymously named brand Sonia Carrasco.

Carrasco’s inaugural collection, “33.394759-124.969482,” a line of elegant, flowing and minimalist pieces that scream chic, debuted on the catwalk for the first time at 080 Barcelona Fashion Week. The numerically named unisex collection actually refers to the coordinates of “plastic island” in the Pacific Ocean — also known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch that lies halfway between Hawaii and California — that is home to millions of tons of plastic waste. The brand explained that each collection moving forward will be named after coordinates of different natural disasters to continually bring attention to the industry’s ongoing environmental issues.

Sonia Carrasco Announces Inaugural ‘100 Percent Sustainable’ Collection

The young designer was honored with the “national emerging designer” award, which is presented to the best collection of the season at Barcelona Fashion Week, according to the company. Carrasco, 30, has worked as a fashion designer for Alexander McQueen in London, Celine in London and Paris and Zara in A Coruña — and has also won the Pandora MFSHOW and MMOD Murcia Open Design Awards, in addition to being a finalist or nominated for several other prestigious accolades.

The designer exclusively uses sustainable materials for apparel and accessories. Photo courtesy of Sonia Carrasco. 

Sonia Carrasco, founder and creative director of the brand, told WWD, “The desperate and ruthless nature of human beings and the memories that we silence which we eventually express, have played an important part influencing my collection. This collection has presented a clear message to the public regarding the harmful environmental effects of the fashion industry on our planet. We want to make a bold statement highlighting the different wounds that now exist on our planet as a result of the fashion industry. We understand that apart from creating our own sustainable fashion brand, we have to reeducate the consumer to reduce overconsumption and minimize the carbon footprint of the fashion industry.” And the brand addresses that matter by employing an atemporal “on demand” model that prevents overproduction, as each piece is manufactured in small local workshops in Barcelona and cut to size, taking about a week to manufacture in Carrasco’s studio.

A look from Sonia Carrasco’s fall 2020 collection. Photo courtesy of Sonia Carrasco. 

Carrasco’s collection exclusively features 100 percent sustainable and certified fabrics and materials: That means Carrasco’s products are entirely free of chemicals and plastic. The designer said she uses 100 percent organic wool and cotton — both certified by Global Organic Textile Standards — in addition to 100 percent recycled nylon, which is made from recycled plastic bottles found in the ocean and certified by Standard 100 by Oeko-Tex. But in sustainable fashion, the devil is in the details, as consumers in support of the sustainable fashion movement have been known to scrutinize the origin of composition of every thread.

For Carrasco, everything from the buttons and zips to the packaging is made from sustainable materials, as the buttons are made from certified recycled paper and the zips are recycled and recyclable, and packaging is made from recycled and reusable paper and cards, including the labels found inside of each garment. (They’re made from 100 percent recycled polyester from recycled plastic bottles.) And to ensure a fully circular loop, Carrasco added that any leftover textiles or scraps from garment manufacturing are used for the care labels in apparel.

The brand said Carrasco uses her designs as a metaphor for the memories that are silenced and repressed but eventually come to the surface, by featuring details such as hems and pockets that can be seen on the outside instead of the inside to illustrate the concept. Carrasco said, “We believe that fashion doesn’t have to negatively affect the environment, and so the only option we had was to use 100 percent certified organic or recycled fabrics. We don’t want to be on the same team as those who are destroying the planet.”

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