The cities of London and Madrid have never been more connected than when Carlota Barrera’s Fall/Winter 23 collection was presented simultaneously on the London Fashion Week platform and unveiled in the form of a fashion film.

“Upheaval”, the proposal’s name, arrived that day at 11 a.m, coinciding with the opening of the doors of her new studio in the Spanish capital. Located in the heart of the city centre, and in a very intimate way, Barrera enthusiastically received all the professionals of the sector and friends who decided to come to support her in this new launch, which arises from having been inspired by everything related to the sea and the world of fishermen, as we must remember that Carlota was born and grew up in the north of Spain.

Every growth process is followed by a maturation phase. In the case of Carlota Barrera, she experienced it in the British capital, where she trained as a designer at the prestigious London College of Fashion, and where she began her journey in the vibrant and crazy world of fashion.

Despite having spent a lot of time in London, Carlota is Spanish and has decided to continue patenting the concept of the “Spanish brand” and everything related to it, but she has also done a lot of research into the relationship that man has with nature. The latter makes a lot of sense when looking at the garments presented, as several of them celebrate environmental awareness and explore the techniques of artisanal coastal fishing and the art of net making, as well as pushing the brand’s dialogue on gender and the replacement of rigid masculine codes.

Going into the pieces of the collection, and starting with the material just mentioned (the nets), these are materialized in the form of dyed balls and joined together using threads that surprisingly turn into a top. Others, for example, are based on the feature film “The Earth Trembles” by Luchino Visconti and his portrayal of the life of Sicilian fishermen, representing the loneliness and harshness of the night at sea, where they only hear the sound of the water, the wind and the rustling of the nets. To overcome these endless nights of cold and humidity, Carlota imagines functional, water-resistant capes. The shirts with pronounced curves, the sailor stripes, the rope and metal details typical of 1930s workwear, and the introduction of redesigned work jackets are also there, but these clothes are no longer for those difficult days, but for the coastal ones when the sun comes out and the fishermen go out to celebrate in a humble way that they have overcome those situations.

Craftsmanship is also celebrated, specifically through the use of natural coastal elements reworked by hand into contemporary pieces, and hand-braided rope accessories. The ruggedness of workwear is revisited and elevated to the highest standards of tailoring, where interior finishes and details are as important and meaningful as the outer layers.

Finally, the color palette and textures used evoke the roughness of fishing nets and craftsmanship. The result is garments that reinterpret tradition in a contemporary context, reflecting the brand’s evolution towards a more mature and sophisticated aesthetic, inspired by the constant evolution of gender identities.

Undoubtedly FW23 by Carlota Barrera is the perfect tribute that any fisherman or person who works at sea would have wished for. At the same time, the main pieces of the collection pay homage to the women “redeiras” who build the fishing nets on the Spanish coasts and who, although they often face a lack of recognition, carry out fundamental work in the fishing industry.

Check out the collection below: