Wes Gordon On Carolina Herrera's Heart For Hope Initiative And The Role Of The Fashion Brand During COVID-19

BY Harper's BAZAAR Arabia / Aug 3 2020 / 12:20 PM

The creative mastermind behind the iconic fashion house discusses the importance of optimism, hope, and why it's important for the industry to support those in need during these trying times...

Wes Gordon On Carolina Herrera's Heart For Hope Initiative And The Role Of The Fashion Brand During COVID-19

The iconic luxury fashion house celebrates togetherness and hope through a new charitable endeavour; Heart For Hope will donate 10% of all handbag and other accessories sales to both the Red Cross and Red Crescent.

Carolina Herrera creative director Wes Gordon discusses the initiative in detail with BAZAAR, along with the role of the fashion brand in today's society and why it's critical to help others in need during these unprecedented times. 

Harper’s Bazaar Arabia (HBA): What is Carolina Herrera Heart for Hope?

Wes Gordon (WG): Carolina Herrera Heart for Hope is an invitation to take action as a global community and make a positive change. We believe it is our responsibility to help as much as possible and, until December 31, 2020 10% of sales from all bags and other accessories, both in-store and online, will be donated to the Red Cross and Red Crescent COVID-19 relief initiatives supporting several countries around the world.

HBA: Why have you decided to build this initiative around handbags? What do they represent to the brand?

WG: Handbags are a very important pillar of our brand at Carolina Herrera, handmade in Spain by the best artisans with the utmost attention, care and skill. Our leather goods are a representation of who we are – quality, integrity and the ability to stand the test of time. It is these values that are reflected in the founding of the Heart for Hope project.

Wes Gordon, creative director at Carolina Herrera

HBA: How does this sense of craftsmanship translate into the Carolina Herrera New York fashion collections?

WG: My designs and visions cannot come to life without the skill and artistry of our atelier in New York, which I can say with confidence is parallel to none. Since my first day at Carolina Herrera, I have been awed and inspired by the skill, 'know how' and technical wizardry of our patternmaking and atelier team. They are able to make our sketches on paper come to life in the most fantastical way imaginable and translate the spirit of alegría de vivir through every seam, stitch and hem. I am privileged to work with them, and this is truly something that makes Carolina Herrera New York absolutely unique.

HBA: What does this crisis teach us about the role of a fashion brand in today’s society?

WG: Fashion is about community, optimism and hope. While this may be a challenging time for the industry as a whole it is our job to reach out, listen and think of ways that we can support our communities in every possible way to make positive impact.

HBA: How do you approach a big project like this one?

WG: By contributing with something we do best – our meticulously crafted handbags. We hope that through one small gesture we can ultimately inspire greater change. Personally, I am so inspired by how everybody has come together in solidarity to bring this project our customers around the world.

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Born in response to the current global pandemic, CAROLINA HERRERA HEART FOR HOPE is our new charitable initiative with the mission of creating and fostering joy. CAROLINA HERRERA HEART FOR HOPE puts our craftsmanship at the service of those in need. Until December 31st, 2020, 10% of all Carolina Herrera handbags and other accessories sales will be donated to the Red Cross and Red Crescent globally. Link in bio for more information. #CHOOSEHOPE _ _ Nacida en respuesta al actual contexto global, nuestra nueva iniciativa benéfica CAROLINA HERRERA HEART FOR HOPE tiene por misión generar esperanza. CAROLINA HERRERA HEART FOR HOPE pone nuestra artesanía a favor de los más necesitados. Hasta el 31 de diciembre de 2020, el 10% de las ventas de todos los bolsos Carolina Herrera y de otros accesorios se donarán a Cruz Roja y Media Luna Roja globalmente. Más información en el link de la bio. #CHOOSEHOPE

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HBA: How relevant is solidarity to Carolina Herrera as a brand? What other projects are the most meaningful?

WG: Carolina Herrera was founded on the values of a family company, and families look after each other. It is in this spirt of solidarity and integrity that we founded Heart for Hope, with the goal of inspiring hope and joy in the projects we choose to partner with and undertake. Previously, we have partnered on the CH Pink Project, which is celebrating its 11th anniversary in our battle against Breast Cancer. While the COVID-19 Pandemic is the initiative’s main focus for the rest of 2020, we will continue to listen and seek out meaningful projects as we move forward.

HBA: As a fashion designer, what does this initiative mean to you?

WG: I am proud that that this initiative connecting creativity and product with action and direct relief, through the Red Cross and Red Crescent for the 2020 phase for Heart for Hope. It is critical at this time that we actively seek out ways to help those in need, and continue to do so even after the pandemic subsides. It may be a dark time right now, but we get through it together and we must continue to do what we can to encourage hope, kindness and positivity where we can and share the light. ​

For more information on Heart for Hope visit carolinaherrera.com

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