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Statement jewellery crafted from recycled raw cotton

Working the raw cotton in the atelier in Queretaro, Mexico.
Working the raw cotton in the atelier in Queretaro, Mexico.   -   Copyright  Caralarga
By Euronews Living

In anticipation of their upcoming Biennale, 1.618 are partnering with euronews Living to tell the environmental, social and essentially human stories behind their unique collection of international brands.

From the heights of the Tibetan Plateau to the cosy warmth of Scandinavian hygge, we'll be asking 1.618's big names in sustainable luxury all about their inspiration. Behind each brand is a story of determination and dedication to social and environmental issues, a story that reveals the changing face of luxury.

Textile design and production workshop, Caralarga is based in Santiago de Queretaro, Mexico. Using discarded cotton and textile waste, their craftspeople create quality fabric jewellery inspired by the natural world. This social and sustainable project does everything in house from design to the intricate production of their pieces. We caught up with the brand to find out about the importance of collaboration and discuss what sustainable luxury means to them.

Let's start at the beginning, what first inspired you to start making your statement jewellery pieces?

In 2015 I had the opportunity to access a badge of raw cotton threads, excess of a textile factory that has been producing cotton fabrics since 1846 in Hercules, Queretaro. Along with Soco, friend and master artisan in Caralarga, we started experimenting towards the creation of statement jewellery pieces made of raw cotton fibres in which we found a world of possible creative ways and most important sustainability in a natural way. If we could create high-quality jewellery made from waste, and make people like it, we could initiate an in house design and production, social and sustainable project.

Working the raw cotton in Caralarga's atelier in Herucles, Queretaro, Mexico.Caralarga

What values are most important to Caralarga?

Simplicity is the source of our inspiration. We like things as they are, we believe a simple world is better.

Tell us about the materials that go into making each piece?

We started experimenting with the excess of 100% raw cotton threads and cotton denim fabrics that had been discarded by tiny errors in the textile production and found a source of creativity and deep inspiration; a way to produce a jewellery collection, not necessarily made of metals, but of fibre. This noble source along with the magician hands of our artisan master, Soco, has led us to create a line of jewellery, apparel, textiles and large format wall pieces, all made from the same fibre.

This look is made from 100% raw cotton that would have otherwise been thrown away.Caralarga

How has collaboration with the community helped to grow your brand?

In Caralarga, collaborations with external groups, communities, artisans, artists, are a way to conserve the human values of our beliefs.

We believe collaborations are a catalyst for human growth, food for the intellect and creativity. The human and intellectual exchange that happens in a collaborative project is always a lesson in generosity. The creative process and final results always have exceeded our expectations and made us realize that work and life are much more pleasant when shared.

Finally, what does sustainable luxury mean to you?

The transformation of discarded, existing resources into simple, timeless, high quality, artisan-made, wearable and decorative pieces that can highlight the goodness of raw materials.

The necklace is made with Castile nuts collected by indigenous communities from Amealco, Mexico and 100% raw cotton threads.Caralarga

You can find more information about Caralarga here and check out the 1.618 guide featuring all of their sustainable luxury brands here.