‘New Perspective On Modern Caribbean Woman’

June 30, 2016

Vincentian designer Karen De Freitas is ready to showcase her designs on the Bermuda Fashion Festival runway this year with her women’s wear brand Soka, pledging to highlight a “new perspective on the modern day Caribbean woman.”

Self-proclaimed as the modern day Dorothy Dandridge mixed with Madonna, De Freitas’ infatuation with fashion developed while living on the islands of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.

Karen Frietas Bermuda June 30  (3)

De Freitas eventually moved to New York City to attend the prestigious fashion college, Parsons School of Design.

While attending Parsons, she apprenticed with brands like Alice + Olivia , Zac Posen, Bibhu Mohapatra, and Yigal Azrouel. Inspired by her apprenticeships, her amplified taste in contemporary designs along with her island flare, Soka was born.

The name ‘Soka’ derives from the monogram So-Karen and also her passion for Soca music.

Karen De Freitas SOKA (1)

De Freitas describes her relationship with fashion as “experimentation, reinvention, versatility, colour, texture, shape, contrast and composition. The body is a vehicle for design, best described as a human canvas on which any mood, idea or belief can be interpreted.

“Each one of us has a role to play in life, and mine is that of a designer. I make an impact on our perception of ourselves and that of others through the media of clothing.”

Karen De Freitas SOKA (3)

Soka officially launched in Spring/Summer 2015, establishing the brand aesthetic, strongly rooted in marrying colours and reinvigorating classic silhouettes.

In one year, Soka has received a lot of buzz, appearing at Brooklyn Fashion Week 2015 and The Collection Moda Jamaica 2015. Soka has also been featured in magazines such as Ugly Magazine and on Vogue.com.

When asked what to expect from her Bermuda Fashion Festival debut, De Freitas said, “Expect a new perspective on the modern day Caribbean woman.”

Karen De Freitas SOKA (2)

The Bermuda Fashion Festival, produced by the City of Hamilton, is held from July 10 to July 16 and includes designer pop-up shops and a trunk show hosted in various Hamilton locations.

Attracting international designers, models, celebrities and bloggers from the US, Caribbean and UK, the Festival is in its seventh year.

Tickets are selling now from ptix.bm/bff and from City Hall offices. The schedule of the full week can be seen at bermudafashionfestival.com/eventspage

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Comments (5)

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  1. Akeil Williams says:

    That second ones showin a lil too much dea.

  2. Yo Yo Billy Joe says:

    I am all for this woman and her work it is great. But Bermuda is not in the Caribbean. It is like 1000 miles from it, and it is closer to icey Canada than the actual caribbean. The real caribbean is around Cuba and is a sea, not an ocean. We live in the Atlantic Ocean. Nor do our culture have any connection to the Caribbean nations and cultures, except for those who moved here from there. We are not Portugese because a lot of Portugese came to live here, right? Bermuda has its own identity, as a blessed paradise all of its own in the Atlantic Ocean. We should focus on our OWN culture instead of bogarting and absorbing the culture of others. If we do not make an attempt at this, our unique culture will be dissolved and replaced by other ones. And who wants that?
    Bermuda is more European than Caribbean. Since it is a colony and identifies more with Europe in style and dress, even music.

    • Bermuda Teen says:

      Trying to find the part in this article that says Bermuda is a Carribean island.. Her designs are based on and inspired by the carribean. Our culture from what I’ve learned in bermuda social studies is influenced by non-bermudians..

    • Tdot says:

      Yo yo billy. Your an a**.
      You do realise that your Bermuda’s history is very similar to other countries in the Caribbean. Not Canada not Europe.

      I’m sure you have soca or dancehall playing on your radio as we speak.


      Stupid comment….

      Anyway…. big up Bermuda (y)

    • FML says:

      you been drinking the same cool aid from the 1980′s when I was a kid. It was not until I traveled to the Caribbean to realize that I was lied to. Went and found my people’s and their country #stkitts #nevis rest my case.