Life teaches us not to judge. As the years go by you realize that any appearance is deceptive and any impression is far from reality. This has happened to me with Sara Rodés who, despite knowing her for years, I never saw the depth of her heart, the intelligence of her words and the positive energy that talking to her transmits.
We invite you to stay and read the interview we had with her. You will find reflections of all kinds, from emotional well-being, yoga or the power that fashion gives us to transmit what we feel.
VIRAGO: Hello Sarita. We have known each other for many years, but it has not been until now that we have had the opportunity to have conversations with character and reason for being by themselves. I have learned a lot with you in the last few weeks. Not only because of what we have talked about, but also because of your attitude towards everything and your priority of peace over war. A virtue that is not only essential in relationships but brings wellbeing to you and others. And I think that the pieces designed for your collection represent a lot of your character.
Sara Rodés: Thank you very much, Inés, for these words and for opening the doors to such an important part of your world and letting me be part of Virago. A brand that for me, goes far beyond fashion. It is incredible all that you transmit, your philosophy and how you are breaking all the stereotypes of women through creativity. I have loved working with you and learning by your side. You do everything with love, passion and dedication and that is reflected in your work and being by your side.
V: Before we start, which song should we play on Spotify to read your interview?
SR: Shine by Benjamin Francis Leftwich
V: And now let's go to the reason of this interview: Sara Rodés x Virago Barcelona Capsule collection. For us it has a meaning that goes beyond a couple of garments that may be more or less trendy. Together we decided to name your collection Healingwear because of everything it transmits to us. What does this collaboration mean to you and what has been your favourite part of the process?
SR: For me this collaboration is much more than having had the honour of designing two garments for Virago. It's all the experience that has gone into creating these two pieces with you. From the joy when you proposed it to me, the conversations we had in your workshop, choosing fabrics with you… I had never seen such a beautiful selection of fabrics as those in your workshop, I liked them all hahah. Seeing how you work and being able to create pieces using the psychology of colours. The truth is that fashion has always fascinated me, even though at the end I didn't choose that path. To be able to unite my passion and work with fashion today is a dream. But of all this, what I've enjoyed most is working with you. I think that our energies have connected very well and that we have created a great duo! Without a doubt I have learned a lot from you and I take a beautiful friendship from this collaboration, among many other things.
V: Experts say that every colour has a meaning. For example, red transmits strength, love and energy, among others. Or orange, confidence and success. Do you think the garments you have designed with Virago transmit these values?
SR: I believe it deeply. Firstly because together we transmit these values, they are garments that despite the small stones we have encountered along the way during these months, we have had the strength and energy to find solutions and even improve them. You can see without a doubt that they are garments made with love and that there is much more behind these garments. For the top, I love that we have chosen the alchemic colours, as this gives the garment and the wearer a lot of strength. The vest, on the other hand, has the game of being able to give double use to the garment, something essential to consume less and take advantage of more. Moreover, it is timeless. The colour white shows that clarity and simplicity that I think is very important, on the other hand the flowers remind me of spring, which symbolises rebirth.
"For the top, I love that we have chosen the alchemic colours, as that gives a lot of strength to the garment and to the wearer. The vest, on the other hand, has the game of being able to give double use to the garment, something essential to consume less and take advantage of more. Moreover, it is timeless."
V: From your own style, how would you combine each of the garments and what do they make you feel when you wear them? In the end we decided to make unconnected garments that represent different states of mind.
SR: What I love about these garments is that they are casual yet elegant. You can wear them with a pair of jeans and converse, or with a pair of high trousers and evening heels. I love the vest because you can wear it in a thousand ways. Open, closed with a turtleneck or a shirt with a collar underneath, and you can even use it as a top. It's also reversible so you can play with the prints. It's true that the idea was to make two garments that were unrelated to each other, to use the psychology of colours and different garments that represent different states of mind. Even so, I always loved to be risky and combine prints. So for those who dare, they can combine the two pieces together; you never go wrong with a turtleneck and a vest on top!
V: Well Sari, you introduce yourself in your Instagram profile as a Health Coach. But let's go a bit further back in time, who is Sara Rodés? What has led you to your current way of life? How did you realize the need to convey to others the importance of a balanced and healthy life in its entirety?
SR: The truth is that there is much more to me than what I show on Instagram, that is just a small part of me. However, all I share are things that I have been through and lived through. Sometimes, when I deal with these issues, my fear is that people will think I am perfect or that I am superior for "giving advice", but the reality is totally the opposite. I'm far from perfect, in fact something that has helped me a lot is to break with perfectionism, it's one of the best things I've done in my life. What is true is that since I was a child I have always wanted to help others, even though sometimes without realizing it I tried to take another path, not feeling prepared, life was leading me back to this one. There was a moment in my life when I touched the ground, I felt that my life was upside down, it was there where without knowing how I started to do things that at that moment had no meaning but my intuition was leading me to them. Now with hindsight, I understand that everything I have done during these past 7 years of personal work and self-knowledge, has helped me to be able to help others. Now I can do it from a place of more love and peace with myself. Those who have known me for years know that I have become a real rollercoaster hahaha, which has helped me to get to where I am now. Many times we think that because we ask for help we are weak, we are afraid, but I asked for it, I received it and it changed my life for the better. There is nothing better than knowing when you need help, that's what life is all about, giving and receiving.
"Many times we think that because we ask for help we are weak, we are scared, but I asked for it, I received it and it changed my life for the better. There is nothing better than knowing when you need help, that's what life is all about, giving and receiving.
V: We are following you closely and we know that although you have always been a fashion lover, for some time now you have decided to consider how to consume it more responsibly. What tips would you give us from the consumer's point of view to start being more sustainable? Is it possible to be sustainable in fashion when we have so many fast fashion options available that are very attractive both in price and trend?
SR: Yes, it is. At home they have always been very sustainable, it is something they have instilled in all of us since we were children. That doesn't mean that we are always hahaha, but we do try to be quite aware of it. I think that the best way to start being sustainable is not by trying to be "perfect" and "100% sustainable", but by becoming aware, internalising, and trying to do our bit whenever we can. Nowadays it is very easy to be a bit sustainable, because we are so unsustainable in so many areas, that we have a thousand options to make small changes. I believe that everything that one sets out to do is possible, as long as we are realistic. Fast fashion allowed everyone to buy fashionable clothes, but this in turn has led to an exponential increase in production, which of course has a harmful impact on the environment. I believe that in fashion, sustainability should be focused on using sustainable materials, producing locally etc., but also on the way we consume. In other words, giving our garments a second use. There are a thousand ways of doing this!
"Today it is very easy to be a bit sustainable, because we are so unsustainable in so many areas, that we have a thousand options to make small changes".
V: Another of your passions is travelling. You haven't stopped all your life and this must have given you thousands of experiences that have provided you with a lot of experiencies in every way. Tell us, where in the world would you stay forever and where would you start a new adventure? More than once you have said that this is your weak point in terms of pollution, but that you try to mitigate its consequences. How do you do it?
SR: I love travelling, especially getting to know other places and cultures. The truth is that I have moved around a lot during my childhood, hence the restless ass hahah. Although I'll tell you that it's been great for me to stop a bit, behind the trips there can be a lot of tiredness. I love many countries, especially in South America, but to be honest I'll stick with Cadaqués. For me Cadaqués is my home, it's the town where I feel most like myself, it has a magical energy.
As for the pollution, I try to compensate for it in other areas. I have an almost "plant based" diet, at home we recycle and in Barcelona I try not to use the car (I love walking my dog, Set) among many other things.
V: We don't know if it can be revealed yet, but we understand that you have a very interesting project in your hands that is about to come out. Can you give us a little preview?
SR: It is a project that was born a year ago in New York when I met my friend and partner, Leticia Gimeno, although better known as letoto6. The truth is that we met and we got along as if we had known each other all our lives. On that same trip the idea for the project came up, although we have been changing and improving it a lot during these months, adapting to the circumstances of not being able to work from the same place, which is not easy. Healthosophy is going to be an online coaching platform where we want to provide young women with the necessary guidance to live a happy and healthy life at the same time, in order to become the best version of themselves. Feeling good in your body, calming your mind, anxiety and freeing your spirit. We want to address issues that concern us and that almost all women experience, but that we find difficult to talk about. Healthosophy is based on our 5Ms life philosophy: Movement, Meditation, Mindful eating, Me time & Mother Nature.
"Healthosophy is going to be an online coaching platform where we want to provide young women with the necessary guidance to live a happy and healthy life at the same time, to become the best version of themselves".
V: At Virago Barcelona we promote the idea that being sexy doesn't mean being provocative and that wearing a neckline doesn't mean you're looking for war. Virago defends dressing up just for the sake of it, feeling beautiful and taking advantage of the space of attention that a woman generates by her attractiveness to say what the world needs to hear. However, there are still thousands of criticisms of the way a woman dresses. From your point of view, what relationship do you think there is between fashion and feeling good about ourselves?
SR: First I want to tell you that I love what Virago stands for. Because that makes it much more than a fashion brand. I totally agree that going sexy doesn't mean provoking and wearing a neckline doesn't mean looking for war. Just like you can look for war without wearing it! Human beings love to give an opinion instead of nurturing, we give an opinion on everything and that limits us enormously. We should learn to live, and let live. That is one of my mottos "Live and let live". For me, fashion has always been a form of creativity, of expression. An identity. The way you dress says a lot about you and your mood. I notice it a lot in me, when I'm super happy, energetic, I'm full of colours and when I'm more stressed or tired, I wear anything, dressing with dull colours". Many times fashion also helps us to transmit what we cannot express with words, whether it is because of fear or any other reason. Women love to feel beautiful as well as good, although we have to achieve this in our own skin, fashion undoubtedly helps us a lot. Apart from looking good, being able to express ourselves is a great release that allows us to feel even better. Finally, as far as criticism is concerned, I would like to take this opportunity to say that often it is the women themselves who criticise us, who judge each other, whether it be out of envy, complexes or anything else. That is the first thing I think we have to change, we have to support each other and treat each other with respect, because there is no greater strength than unity.
"We human beings love to have an opinion instead of nurturing, we have an opinion on everything and that limits us enormously. We should learn to live, and let live. That is one of my slogans "Live and let live".
(...) we have to support and treat each other with respect, because there is no greater strength than unity".
V: In turn, society has made us understand that we are the weak gender and that we are more sensitive. We do not agree, but we do believe that each gender has some more predominant characteristics. For example: women TEND to be more empathetic. But there is no direct relationship between women and empathy. It is often said, quite wrongly, that women find it harder to be emotionally stable. And the truth is that a woman's hormonal cycle plays a very hard role in our lives. What advice would you give to women who are going through a moment of emotional insecurity? How can we put aside criticism and detect what does not bring us anything positive?
SR: Yes, generally speaking, each gender has more predominant characteristics, but it's because of the type of energy. There is the masculine energy and the feminine energy, which should not be confused with being a man or a woman, although it can generally happen that way. It is important to understand this for relationships, for one's own well-being and for that of the world. It is necessary to be in harmony with our energy and to understand that although we all come to the same thing and want the same thing, we have different energies. We all have something of both, usually one of them predominating. The feminine energy (Yin) is more emotional, passionate, imaginative, gentle, intuitive, vulnerable, caring for others and honouring the masculine. The masculine energy (Yang) is more dominant, rational, determining, conscious, supportive, reassuring and honouring the feminine. So, it is clear that the female hormonal cycle as well as many other things, play an important role in our lives, but it is also important to understand the energies. As for the fact that women find it difficult to be more emotionally stable, being therefore weak, I think this is an absurd stereotype. Having emotions and being vulnerable does not mean being weak, on the contrary, opening up to the world and expressing oneself is a courageous thing to do and men need this vulnerability from us in order for them to open up emotionally as well. Like everything in life, balance is the key. The advice for putting aside criticism is to love ourselves more, to focus on what we have, all the good around us and not the other way around. To love yourself, you must first be compassionate with yourself, break with perfectionism and demands and accept yourself, wherever you are. To stop, observe and listen to our emotions, thoughts, how we feel and where we are, in short, all that we have inside us. We need to take this first step with patience and without being hard on ourselves, in order to accept ourselves. The difficult thing is to stop in a world where there is such a demanding society and where sometimes it seems that we are running behind or in front of I don't know what. In fact, going so fast can become a cover to convince yourself that you are fine, even though sooner or later everything will come out. It is very important to stop and listen to yourself. You have to disconnect in order to connect.
"Having emotions and being vulnerable does not mean being weak, on the contrary, opening up to the world and expressing oneself is courageous and men need this vulnerability from us so that they can open up emotionally too. (…)
To love oneself, one must first be compassionate with oneself, break with perfectionism, demands and accept oneself, wherever one may be. To stop, observe and listen to our emotions, thoughts, how we feel and where we are, in short, everything we have inside us".
V: You have been practicing yoga for years, which is now very trendy. You're hardly "cool" if you don't practice it. But do you think that people are aware of the benefits it brings to our body and mind? Or do you think that the vast majority who practice it do so because it is trendy and to be in good shape so as to, as always, follow society's prototypes of beauty? Be that as it may, are the benefits the same?
SR: There will be a bit of everything, but surely you will end up realising the benefits that yoga brings, in the end that's what's important. This year life has made us more aware, there is more and more interest in well-being, more awareness that body and mind go together. Obviously within yoga there are not only the asana classes (postures), there is also meditation, pranayama etc. There are many ways to practice yoga, the more you practice the more benefits and the more connected you are. To enjoy it more it is important that everyone finds the type of practice and style of yoga class that they like best.
V: And now the million dollar question (and what do we ask all the virago muse we talk to). Virago means brave woman, with heroic qualities. What do you have of Virago? As you know, all the names in our collection are ironic, using stereotypes about women that society has instilled. But this time we have decided to leave irony aside and use names that perfectly convey the meaning of the capsule. That is why we have chosen "CREATIVE PEACE" and "ENERGETICAL YOUTH". Which one do you identify with most?
SR: Hahaha. My courage is to accept myself as I am, to ignore everything that society instils in us, to follow my own intuition in order to change the direction of my life and to get where I really want to be. This does not mean that I have arrived, but that I learn every day, opening myself to life and understanding that knowing oneself is a lifelong process. I will fall a thousand times, although few seem hahaha to me, getting up stronger and stronger and learning a little bit more. You always win or you learn.