The Fusion collection – as in a kitchen – where we match food and wine, we use a blend with the best of two worlds: the Aymara and their Alpaca fibres, and the English heritage weaving designs from 19th Century. This collection formed part of an investigation where we re-discovered historical English weaving influences used by the Aymaras in their textiles during the period where they met the English immigrants in the saltpetre offices of the Atacama Desert, at the end of the 19th century.
This collection was first shown in Valparaíso Catwalk , 2014.
Valparaíso is a major city, seaport, and educational centre in Central Chile located about 120 km Northwest of Santiago by road and is one of the South Pacific’s most important seaports.
In the 19th Century, Valparaíso played an important geopolitical role when the city served as a major stopover for ships travelling between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans via the Straits of Magellan. During this golden age, Valparaíso mushroomed, as a magnet for European immigrants, when the city was known by international sailors as “Little San Francisco” and “The Jewel of the Pacific”.
The second half of the last century was unfavourable to Valparaíso. The opening of the Panama Canal was a huge blow to the economy of Valparaíso as European shipping was able to avoid the much longer, and more arduous, Cape Horn route. Also, Chilean mineral nitrates exports declined as the synthetic substitutes began to be used further reducing maritime commerce in the region.
Today, many thousands of tourists visit Valparaíso from around the world to enjoy the city’s labyrinth of cobbled alleys and colourful buildings. The port of Valparaíso continues to be a major distribution centre for container traffic, copper, and fruit exports. Valparaíso also receives growing attention from cruise ships that visit during the South American summer. Most significantly, Valparaíso has transformed itself into a major educational centre with four large traditional universities and several large vocational colleges. The city exemplifies Chilean culture, with festivals every year, and street artists and musicians. In 2003, the historic quarter of Valparaíso was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.