Carolina is a living definition of the current, free and innovative Women that we like to discover. When we found her work and discovered her collection, we immediately liked both her work and her personal experience, and we immediately contacted her to try and know more about it.
In 2011, when she just came back after living in NYC, she was asked to take on a fashion project. She and her team had some issues with an atelier where she worked back then, and so she had to quickly build one in the living room of her house. That same year, a friend of her was getting married, and since she couldn’t find any dress that fit her style (rebel, rock) she asked Carolina to design one for her.
She already had all the tools and was very excited to live this experience with her. It was truly magical. At the same time, she realized there were no wedding dresses on the market that she felt identified with, for rebellious and free women that want something different. So, she decided to create a small capsule collection. She shot a lookbook, and to her great surprise, the international press started publishing, talking about it and she soon started receiving calls from brides. She had to literally put together a fitting room in her house! That’s how it all started. “I still feel goosebumps when I remember it, it was very emotional.”, she confessed to us.
Carolina chose to study subjects completely unrelated to fashion, and never truly felt identified with them. So ever since she graduated, she has always been in the creative professions which is where she feels most herself. Her first job was at indie music label promoter where she managed a creative department — everything from designing disc covers, festival posters, photoshoots… Later she worked for Hermès and Chaumet distributor in Spain while working on her own audiovisual projects. She has always felt very comfortable with creative tasks and so today, as a Creative Director of Otaduy, she can express herself in a multitude of roles, not just the design but creating the whole aesthetic universe of the brand.
They are a 100% female-led team combined by a know-how and more than 30 years of experience of the atelier department, and a very fresh, young dynamic of other departments. This gives an identity and soul to their brand that is quite difficult to achieve today. But above all, they are a passionate team and you can feel that they like what they do. This is what distinguishes Otaduy.
What is your philosophy? What is the DNA of your brand?
Otaduy is a brand of wedding dresses. We accompany brides during a very magical moment in their lives. I always say that love is the most powerful vibration that we as human beings are capable of experiencing, and so being part of this moment is a real honor and responsibility. We believe that in the end, love is the only force that can change the world. Otaduy stands for freedom, craft traditions, and authenticity. This is our philosophy and the reason of our existence.
What is your world? What are you inspired by?
I get inspired by a lot of things, every single day. I could be reading a book or visiting a museum, and suddenly feel something that I need to express through my work. I have a rather radical, open views which I think is very much related to creativity since it allows you to see the world through an open, multidimensional prism. I am also a huge fan of traveling, cinematography, art, discovering new things…in general, I tend to find and lean towards aesthetics in the outside world.
How is the manufacturing of dresses working?
We have our own atelier in Barcelona where all the designs are being manufactured: hand-made and tailor-made. During the high season, we work with small ateliers of seamstresses with lifelong experience; in order to work with us, they have to pass a very high standard of quality control.
Having our own atelier allows us a greater flexibility, which means we are able to produce all of our dresses on demand and with any modification that the client requires. It’s a much more complex process, but in the end, every dress is a unique piece. This, for us, is the definition of haute couture.
How long does it take to turn your first idea into an actual dress?
Overall, my creative process is very much integrated into my daily life — for me, it’s like breathing. I can’t really explain how I do it or give a recipe for success: brainstorm for 1 month, draw 1000 sketches, and so on…Sometimes, I need to carry the design in my head for a few months until it fully matures. And sometimes, it’s more random: in the middle of a creative session, side-by-side with my team, I can create things out of nowhere. This usually happens when we are running short on time and this is the moment our Head of Production goes crazy 😉
What are the pieces you like the most from your collection?
I really like the concept that we created: a dress and an ‘over-dress’. In the first look, you are a romantic bride that somehow resembles an ‘engaged princess’. And then you take the over-dress off, and you become a Michelle Pfeiffer from Scarface. I absolutely love this surprise effect!
Another item I love is our vegan jacket — on one side, it gives your look a lot of character, and on the other, it’s also something you can wear every day and it will carry the good vibes of this magic day.
What are the raw materials that you like working with the most?
We work a lot with guipure and Georgette Silk. I am also lucky to be able to create my own embroidered fabrics — which is a true luxury because I work with illustrators that produce high-quality embroidery, and everything is made by hand.
Can you give us 3 words that describe the best the modern bride/couple?
Love, love, and love.
What is your vision of an on-trend wedding?
For me, the definition of modernity is being able to have the wedding the way you want it. It seems like such a simple idea, but we come from a cultural heritage with very strict social codes that obliged us to follow certain traditions and obligations. When in reality, the only thing that matter on this magical day is LOVE and celebrating it.
Can you name one famous bride that you would have loved to dress?
I got very inspired by Kate Moss’s wedding dress back in the day.