Fashion Denver will host a handful of designers at the 303 Magazine White Party next Thursday, August 18th at the Riviera at Breakers Resort! Cara Diane + Co is one of our featured designers and we are happy to have her on board. She was part of our fall market last year and between now and then, she’s had a baby and is back in action as a designer!
What were your obsessions growing up?
#1 Any type of craft project.
I could spend hours on beads or shrinky dinks (I think I still can). I remember spending days at a time at my grandma’s house over holidays and summer break so she would teach me how to sew.
#2 I was smitten with being an entrepreneur and starting a businesses.
Even as a young kid I remember setting up a lemonade stand and being impatient waiting for people to come to me, so the next time I made homemade pretzels and took them door to door to sell in my little wagon.
I think for me, Cara Diane + Co. is a perfect intersection of both those passions.
#3 Candy. Cake. Sugar. And anything sweet.
How did fashion become the symbol for your creative expression?
I love fashion because it’s always right with you. Other types of art exist on walls or in certain locations, but fashion is something we all get to participate in every day and I think that’s what attracted me most to it.
Fashion being my outlet for creative expression started at a young age when my mom and I didn’t really agree on fashion. At that time I decided that if she wasn’t going to buy my the styles I wanted to wear because she didn’t like them, then I was just going to have to make it myself.
Deconstructing my clothes to build new pieces became an essential process for me to explore who I was and find an independent voice for my creativity. Over time, that process slowly grew into a passion which then inevitably turned into my vocation.
Do you see a stylistic connection between the things you do in your daily life that is reflected into your collections?
Definitely. Most of the pieces I create for the collections in my shop are super wearable and lean more toward street style. My creative process for design usually starts with sketching out designs or even painting them while I’m drinking my morning coffee. I’m pretty laid back and a huge proponent of comfy clothes, and I think those elements come out pretty directly in my collections.
What is your research process like before starting a collection?
Honestly, it’s so different for every collection. I’ve done everything from spending hours on Google images looking at pictures of beaches to choosing one word or concept and building every piece around it, to building a color palette and building out each piece from there.
How has fashion impacted you?
I think like any art form, fashion has the ability to have impact both personally and on a wider scale. Being involved in fashion design has helped me grow artistically and diversify my perspective through a range of unique experiences.
I’m a huge supporter of how fashion creates communities and can drive causes. Making a “fashion statement” is no longer just about wearing something unique or eye-catching. I think fashion as an industry has evolved to the point that its not just what our clothes and accessories look like that matters, but its also what they stand for and the story behind their origin that drives their value. For example, the sustainable fashion movement and finding ways to do things that are both better for our world and the people in it.
What is your opinion on the fashion scene in Denver from a designers perspective?
We have designers with such different styles and stories who are in such different stages of their journey. It makes it so much fun to watch because it means each fashion show, market, or pop up truly has something for everyone. Its such a fun community to be a part of and watch grow.