Q&A: Carolina Armenta discusses LA Fashion Week debut with brand Femgraphy
Founder and designer Carolina Armenta made her LA Fashion week debut on Saturday with her brand Femgraphy. Modeled after the metropolitan woman, the collection focuses on pieces that can transition from day to night and prioritize comfort and elegance. (Jefferson Alade/Daily Bruin)
By Zinnia Finn
April 4, 2022 2:02 a.m.
Femgraphy is mapping the intersection of comfort and elegance.
Initially inspired by the metropolitan lifestyle, Carolina Armenta founded the fashion brand two years ago and has since worked to design and market collections with the help of her sister. With sheer panels and vibrant colors, her designs are meant to help individuals feel empowered to radiate their inner selves while remaining appropriate for both glamorous outings and the workplace, Armenta said.
The Daily Bruin’s Zinnia Finn spoke with Armenta on her LA Fashion Week debut, design process and personal expression through fashion.
This interview has been edited for length and clarity. Portions have been translated from Spanish.
Daily Bruin: Where did you first draw inspiration from for Femgraphy?
Carolina Armenta: Since I was a little child, I always loved this world of fashion, but I took different paths because of my life, my family. A few years ago, I traveled to New York City and spent time in Manhattan – I was inspired there, and my interest in fashion increased. After that, I made the decision to move back to Mexico and start this adventure.
After I came back to Mexico, I started to study (because) I didn’t know anything (about) how to make clothes. My inspiration was a cosmopolitan woman, a traveling woman, a working woman, a woman that feels like she always needs to have adequate clothing to present herself day to day.
DB: When designing your collections, how do you balance functionality and originality?
CA: I grew up and I lived with my father most of the time, who was very masculine. He’s a baseball player – so I grew up in this atmosphere, but I am also very feminine. When I create something, I think of casual or sport clothes and high fashion or glamorous clothes, and I try to merge those two things and create something functional and comfy. I want women to feel comfortable just like men feel comfortable in their outfits, where (they are) not afraid that something will go out of place or bulk out on one side or anything like that.
DB: What is the meaning behind the name Femgraphy?
CA: When I create something, I always think in the silhouette of a woman. (Femgraphy is from) “femme” – “femenino” – and (the suffix) “-graphy.” We always take care about the body shape, almost like it would be a map.
[Related: LA Fashion Week 2022]
DB: How would you describe your design process – is it more formulaic or organic?
CA: It’s weird because sometimes I have visions – I see patterns everywhere, materials and prints (that bring to) mind ideas of what I will do with those fabrics. Sometimes I also see it more clearly. I see a woman with a dress, but I perceive it differently and start picturing a design in my head at that moment and putting it together on the person.
When this happens, I try to sketch it right away so it doesn’t go away, so the bubble doesn’t burst. By instinct, I look at other people’s designs and (how it fits) their body or their physique and start automatically creating something or (improving) what they are wearing – like putting the cherry on top of the cake.
DB: When people wear Femgraphy, how do you hope they feel?
CA: Comfortable, always, and sophisticated. I enjoy when people feel (comfortable) in their own skin, and they are not afraid to show it off. Today, some of the models we had for the fitting were so excited to wear the outfits – when they tried (on) the clothes, I felt like they had more energy, their eyes were sparkling. That’s what I want – for people to feel something when they wear my clothes.
DB: As you prepare for your LA Fashion Week debut, what would you tell yourself at the beginning of this journey?
CA: Be strong, believe in my dreams and keep going – don’t look back. I know a lot of people say, ‘Keep going, don’t give up,’ but it’s really hard sometimes to start or build something from zero. That’s why I don’t want to say it’s easy because you have to encourage yourself a lot and do a lot of things to create. But at the end of the day, it feels really good to (achieve) what you believe, what you want. All the effort you’re going through – at the end, it is worth it.