Chicana fashion designer creating a beautiful life in Barrio Logan

Chicana fashion designer creating a beautiful life in Barrio Logan

On a colorful road in Barrio Logan is a small stitching store owned by manner designer Claudia Rodriguez-Biezunski known as “SEW LOKA.

Every thing sold in Rodriguez-Biezunski’s shop is manufactured out of material that was after one thing else, one thing she calls “gradual vogue.”

“Employing all the things that we have, like blankets that individuals would say, ‘Well this blanket is now trash because it has a gap,’ how can we add a little something cool so people today could now be fascinated in it once more?” Rodriguez-Biezunski stated.

That is the concern she asks herself as she reimagines and breathes new lifestyle into fabric that was formerly liked.

Sustainable style has been an ongoing craze. But Rodriguez-Biezunski reported her family members was undertaking that lengthy ahead of it was “the matter” to do.

“I’m a single of 6 youngsters, you know, it was truly tricky for my mom to be capable to pay for factors. We would go to Permanently 21 and she would say, ‘What do you want listed here?’ I would say, ‘This.’ She would say, ‘Lets go house and make it,’ and I would say, ‘I want it right here however!’ I would invest in jeans and lower them up and switch them into a thing else. The cultural part of recycling has constantly been a person of my issues — earning confident that we could utilize almost everything in advance of we throw it absent.”

Rodriguez-Biezunski claimed when she moved to San Diego, she went for her desire, and “Sew Loka”— the brand— was born.

“I’ve always had that really punk-rock style and all that,” she remembered. “Absolutely everyone was like, ‘You’re so nuts, you are so insane.’ And so when we made a decision to open up up the company we were like, ‘We need to call it Sew Loka!'” 

She’s built the brand earning a single-of-a-kind wearable art influenced by her wealthy cultural heritage and Chicano id.

“Individuals would form of look at us a particular type of way, simply because we were talking Spanish,” she claimed, introducing that she mentioned she didn’t come to feel recognized by the Mexican facet of her household either.

“I struggled with that a lot,” she said. “When I went to Guadalajara, where my mothers and fathers grew up, I was like, ‘I’m Mexican’ and my cousins were being like, ‘You’re American.’ And so (I had) that sense of not remaining in a position to belong. “

Her bestseller brings together a Catholic image she suggests was everywhere you go exactly where she grew up in the San Fernando Valley, and resonates with people like her.

“Some people today may possibly not be spiritual, (but) they continue to use the Virgencita as a cultural  picture,” she explained. “For me, putting phrases throughout like ‘Morena, Brown AF,’ I want individuals to really feel like, ‘Yes, I am Brown,’ and I experience really proud of that.”

And some others are getting see. In October, Nike came contacting. Rodriguez-Biezunski was invited to their global headquarters in Oregon to host a sewing workshop.

“That’s me, style school fall-out, I’m likely to communicate to a bunch of designers! So how do you believe I come to feel? I’m heading to cry,” she explained in a video clip she posted on her web site.

She also spoke with designers about her journey.

Rodriguez-Biezunski has turn into quite the entrepreneur, signing up for a collective that helps boost other woman artists and enterprises. She also hosts her very own show.

“Especially for me getting a lady and a brown woman in company, (I talk to), ‘how can we uplift each other?'” she said. “We start off off as road distributors and then we transfer in physical DNA to grow to be entrepreneurs.”

She said her lifestyle could have conveniently gone down the mistaken route, if she hadn’t believed and worked challenging to develop her aspiration.

“For me, sewing, I feel like it saved my daily life,” she reported. “I was a troubled youth, I was headed into the mistaken course … and it gave me self-really worth, due to the fact I could make factors and I understood that other folks could not make matters, and that built me come to feel exclusive.” 

And she can now proudly say that mad-Chicana-punk-rocker from the Valley did excellent. She credits all people from her abuelita to her father, mom, brothers, sisters, but specially Barrio Logan, a neighborhood that embraced her, who she compares to pieces of fabric: “You happen to be in essence in a position to sew things collectively and preserve them potent, and I assume that that is a local community.”

Much like her art, it requires a great deal of people today to turn into a huge colourful quilt.

Sew Loka will be celebrating their 10th anniversary on Saturday, March 25 at midday at her store in Barrio Logan with a “Community around Opposition” occasion that will not only celebrate her artwork and community, but other regional artists.