It is a period of reflection and relates to aesthetics, taking place before considering the restraints of production. Interview with Sol Pardo
What we decide to wear is a daily manifestation of who we really are as people. What information we are choosing to present to the world? I started out studying fine arts. It took me a few years to get into the fashion world: I had all these negative perceptions of what I thought the fashion industry was like that were holding me back. The more I started learning, creating and getting inspired by people, I realized how wrong my understanding was. Hat making became my way of expressing my vision. Craftsmanship, to me, are unique things that are hard to reproduce because they are made by people, by hand, and with a lot of skill.
The technology involved in hat making has been around for hundreds of years so in that sense it is outdated. I love the contradiction that comes with using these old techniques and equipment to create super modern pieces that make sense in today’s society and can compete with modern technology.
I’m inspired by hats in movies and theaters. Sunglasses and gloves, heavily embroidered clothing, clay jugs, and woven tapestries. Things that have a mix of Latin America and Mediterranean soul. My last collection is based on looking at cults, their followers, and ideologies. More specifically on the Manson family and the things he made his followers believe, like finding secret messages in music and art that weren’t really there.
My first collection was an acrylic hat collection which was very fun to explore but ultimately not great for the environment. I now create hats made from materials like raffia, sea shells, cotton and silk that can be composted at the end of their life cycle. Sustainability means making sure that my existence has the smallest impact on the earth and the environment as possible.
I’ve always strived to display ideals through millinery. To create hats that are wearable objects and blend fundamental concepts with art, design and craft. Within each hat are different shapes and cultures that intend to bring us nearer new fashion paradigms. There is a conscious decision to employ reusable materials that have been crafted by hand. Pardo Hats aims to defend the value of what’s permanent, of slow fashion that creates concepts, that generates an identity and keeps a distance with the fake charm of what’s instantaneous. We want to move away from seasonal whims to create an object for ever, an object that embodies the promise of letting us meet beyond time.