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Design & Fashion, Interviews

Interview: “We have creativity here, and it’s worth showing”

Carola Solis: “We have creativity here, and it’s worth showing”

Agnes Rivera

Image-heavy fashion has become this Peruvian designer’s signature, though she’s left her fingerprint internationally, from her hometown of Huancayo to posh European cities like Bath.

Carola Solis: “We have creativity here, and it’s worth showing”
(Photo: Carola Solis)“My accent is from everywhere,” laughs Carola Solis, as she sits comfortably in her breezy studio, filled with natural light. Speaking fluently in English, the fashion designer has lived a seemingly globetrotter’s lifestyle that took her from her hometown of Huancayo, in central Peru, to one of England’s most exemplary cities of architecture and design; however, it wasn’t for fashion, but rather furthering her education.

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Design & Fashion, Travelling

Timeless Arequipa at Alpaca Moda

It was 2012, I had already made the decision to _seriously_ embrace photography and so, I carried my heavy camera everywhere. We decided to go to Arequipa, where I had been in the nineties, but this time was different, I would have time to portray it to my liking. Arequipa has always seemed fascinating to me for several reasons: Because it allows me to dress in different ways depending on the time of day (at that moment of my life, I was beginning to _seriously_ explore clothes like walking canvasses). And because I felt like I could walk around the city as if it were Europe (at least that is the way I remember). Backpack on my back, dress and comfy shoes. I captured its sillar monuments, its flowers, its corners, its religious art and finally its sunsets. They have been my favorite days of exploring a city (especially because of the sun falling on the snowy, it is magical).

Chompa de alpaca, falda Misti - Arequipa Atemporal

Alpaca sweater, “Misti volcano” skirt, leather shoes- Timeless Arequipa

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Design & Fashion

What does it mean to be peruvian?

What does it mean for you to be Peruvian?

Smells of damp dirt of the Andes and a Pachamanca oven that was just opened; essences of honeysuckle and wild roses; intense colors of dancers costumes and golden mature crops; golden wheat textures and rough rocks; sensations of the highlands, extreme cold in the shade and burning heat under the sun; feelings of nostalgia for childhood, because everything changes and changes very quickly … all comes to me when I think about the question I posed to three women (two Peruvian and foreign). What does it mean for you to be Peruvian?

Paola Herrera - Yoga - Falda Casa Roosevelt

Paola Herrera – Yoga – Falda Casa Roosevelt

“When I think of Peru, I think of a tree, with many solid and strong roots, a land full of nutrients and then I feel that we Peruvians are the branches that need to recognize that history, cultivate the memory and engage with the rest, with absolutely all other Peruvians, weaving nets, weaving branches, growing a strong and powerful tree top where there is more life, more conscious life. Being Peruvian for me, goes through this: an origin, a union, a pride, a possible future for all, no more, no less … it’s time. We deserve it.” Continue Reading

Design & Fashion, Lifestyle

I, who nursed you with so much love

During an interview a few months ago a journalist asked me how I managed to do it all. Doing it all: Having a home, a daughter, running a business which I share responsibilities with my husband and as the cherry on top, capture my creativity in my designs and bring it to the enterprise level. I replied: Organization, I organize and delegate. And it was true. At that time I could _apparently_ do everything. But it was also true that at that time I had only one daughter (And of course, the journalist had not seen my dark circles concealed by makeup, nor all the running around behind the scenes to be still with her at that moment).

As my husband says, women my generation want to do everything and we want to do everything right. He says: “You want to be a good mother, a good wife, a good artist / designer, and on the way to have a good spiritual and healthy life, be a good human being” … And yes, he is right. I want it all.

Carola Solis Aliaga diseñadora de modas photography

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Design & Fashion

Kaleidoscopic Lima in Washington DC

It has been more than a year since I launched my work and a year since we took the “Caleidoscopic Lima” collection to Washington DC. At the time, very few people understood why we took the collection to Washington, but now that the 2015 Annual Meetings of the Boards of Governors of the World Bank Group (WB) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) https://www.2015lima.gob.pe/en/ has been held in Lima, it makes more sense to tell you about it.

After showing my work at Flashmode, I was approached by people from promPeru (Zulia, I am very thankful for having seen this in me) in order to work a collection that could be shown in Washington. The reason, the Governors meeting would be held here in Lima in 2015 and we needed to welcome them with an glimpse of what they would see here this year. So, it was great fun to gather all the material I already had and to add some more such as the Peruvian government palace (which I was delighted to shoot inside out) and Pachacamac and other sites and to portray in my walking canvas.

Carola Solis Caleidoscopica Lima Washington bw 6 Continue Reading

Design & Fashion, Fashion, Photography

Kaleidoscopic Lima

We all have something to live for, mine is to create, I create to be able to live. And getting to the creation of “Kaleidoscopic Colonial Lima” has meant the unification of my knowledge of Communication Sciences, Anthropology, Semiotics, Photography, Art and my research in digital printing techniques, pattern making and sewing, accompanied by perseverance, challenging myself constantly and understanding that even if we dream of being the best at something , we discover that we are only adding a little light to all the existing creations in the world.

Casa Roosevelt in baroque gold - Carola Solis

Casa Roosevelt in baroque gold – Carola Solis

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Photography, Random Beauty, Self portraits

What my eyes see

One of my photographer friends once asked me how I had developed my photography, my eyes…

My simple answer is: I do not really know… All I know  (I said to him) is that since I can recall, I just see the world in frames. I am framing what I see, almost ALL the time. And I frame almost everything… textures, shades, colours and mostly things / People / whatever that I find beautiful, which results also in me trying to surround myself of beautiful things.

I do not consider myself an expert (almost the opposite, really), nor a “professional artist” or nothing like that, I just find my practice of seeing things and portraying them, fascinating. And I love every second I spend portraying things that I find interesting or attractive, it feeds my soul, my heart, my eyes, my life. To me, every second I spend doing this exercise is worth a lifetime, and that is enough reward.

Below, some of my instagram photos. I love instagram because it allows you to play with different options quick and easy. You can see more of my photos here.

Dramatic Flowers - Carola Solis photography

Dramatic Flowers – Carola Solis photography

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Beauty

What do women want?

(a personal view)

One of the most frequent questions I hear (between jokes and serious conversations) is: What do women want? And in between jokes and serious talks I see answers become extremely complex and/or ridiculous. From my point of view, what women want is not far from what men want, except that we women have a feminine touch, we paint in a language that we can understand and we try to add it to our daily life. In paragraphs below I will try to unveal the mistery of this question/answer, from my point of view and personal experience.

One of the most common characteristics to the women I have met along my life, has been their constant search for beauty, which would summarize as a search for a beautiful life (from the idealization of marriage to the idealization of having a profession and all the happy endings you can imagine) I want to talk about beauty in its deep, broad meaning: that property of the things that make you love them, instilling in us spiritual delight. Let me explain…

Beauty along history has had many patterns and meanings, but I would think that we all agree something beautiful is what makes you not to question its beauty, it is just so beautiful you stare at it and enjoy, it is pure bliss, a sentiment, an upper level of perception of things. And beauty resides in the senses as it resides in the heart, in the mind, and of course in the soul.

Nefelibata - Carola Solis photography

Metropolitan Museum of Art – New York, 2012

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Travelling

We are all different types of travellers, but, why do I _personally_ love travelling?

We just landed from heaven… literally. We flew over Argentina, Chile, the Pacific Ocean and Peru.

If you ask me what trait I might bring from past lives (if you believe in past lives) it is of a traveller. There are very few things that make me as happy as when I am travelling. I love to travel.

Travelling, refreshes my soul, my eyes, my spirit, my body, everything. I love the fresh vibe it brings to what I see everyday and specially how I see it. To honour it, my latest trip was to Buenos Aires, Argentina.

On wheels, Buenos Aires

On wheels, Buenos Aires

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