Buenos Aires – Maqu is a Peruvian sustainable fashion brand originally established in Berlin. Its DNA is based on nature and works under guidelines of social responsibility and carries out initiatives for the education of children in the Andes of Peru.
The brand was founded in 2016 by the Peruvian Marisa Fuentes Prado. It proposes a fully sustainable concept through the use of high-quality organic materials such as alpaca and certified and/or recycled fibers, processes such as 3D design and natural dyeing with ingredients from Peruvian origin. Additionally, through its e-commerce, it makes plastic-free shipments via GoGreen and has a flagship store in Berlin that works exclusively with GreenPeace Energy.
The name of the firm came from the root of “Marisa”, the nickname that the founder had when she was a child. “From a very young age I had the idea of creating a project that would help me combine fashion with social issues. With this motivation, I have always been committed to spreading the importance of caring for and protecting our ecosystems and the people who inhabit them,” she shared with FashionUnited.
The brand offers a classical, yet experimental concept, and is connected to nature and constantly evolving.
The firm explains that its garments are not limited to the visual, but to a sensory experience through different textures. Depending on the collection, the tailoring work is carried out with different family and/or small workshops (depending on the tailoring technique to be used) located mainly in Lima.
One of the characteristic resources is the natural dyeing with Peruvian ingredients such as beet, purple corn and eucalyptus.
The brand works under social responsibility guidelines, preserving traditional textile techniques, labor and fair trade. "We pay great attention to the fact that our quality standards are met, and that working conditions and fair compensation for an adequate standard of living. To this end, we have taken into account the relationship between wages, working hours, time pressure and personal satisfaction," says Fuentes Prado.
The objective, as they explain, has to do with the generation of awareness and the development of products that help people in vulnerable situations through education and work. That is why they make a contribution to the education of children in the Peruvian Andes, with a percentage of their sales. "Everything starts with our Arequipa sweater, for the sale of each one of them, 5 percent of the cost of the piece is donated, thus collecting a significant amount that we donate to the children of a school on the outskirts of the city of Arequipa, Peru," says Fuentes Prado and adds: "I believe that education is the most important thing in the development of a human being and I would like to create more projects like this. I feel it is my duty. As time goes by, I feel more and more committed, while the lack of educational development in Peru persists".
The campaign of the new season SS22 "Fluxability" is starring two Peruvian trans women. The collection is made from the reuse of looms from previous proposals in which stands out the organic and pima cotton.
"Fluxability leans towards a bright palette, which is completely different from what we were used to. It tells a story of reencounters, of adaptation, of the way in which pieces that we had previously produced take on a new meaning by reusing them," explains the designer and adds: "We remake past models, combining them with new fabrics in which organic and pima cotton predominate. The collection features very basic garments with recycled fabrics that play with gathers and ribbons; garments with cut outs woven on a manual machine, as well as openwork and zig zags on an industrial machine.
This article was originally published on FashionUnited.ES, translated and edited to English by Kelly Press.