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Rising Stars: Meet Karla Ortega

Today we’d like to introduce you to Karla Ortega.

Hi Karla, we’re thrilled to have a chance to learn your story today. So, before we get into specifics, maybe you can briefly walk us through how you got to where you are today?
I am from Guadalajara, Jalisco Mexico and I studied fashion design. I graduated from the Autonomous University of Guadalajara in October 1998. From there, I started making Haute Couture dresses for Brides, XV years, Personalized, etc. I also started working in different prestigious clothing brands in Mexico, and always doing my freelance projects, I collaborated as an independent designer in different beauty contests, lending my clothing line to the contest participants. I have always liked designer clothes, that the client or the end consumer feels comfortable and different with a garment or dress designed by me. I believe that patternmaking forms a very important role in a garment. I am passionate about color, pattern, trend and texture when I design a garment. Since I graduated from the Fashion Design career, I have worked in the fashion industry, I started my first Trend Consulting and Design business in 2005 after a difficult moment in my life, the death of my mother who was in my life a pillar of example and strength. That moment in which I felt so vulnerable and alone, I took refuge in my passion and started my small business.

And being in the middle of the fashion industry, I received several invitations to collaborate in different interesting projects such as the training for teachers of the DIF of Guadalajara, and to start teaching at the university level there were several years of work teaching different subjects such as Basic Pattern, Machinery and equipment, Pattern for women, Pattern for men, Pattern for children, Modeling on mannequin, Pattern handbags. Production costs. Without a doubt they were incredible years, I was able to explore that area where I could focus my career in another branch totally different from what I had done before. I had the opportunity to tutor several talented students to go to different National fashion contests. I combined the classes with my business until in 2012 I got married and in 2013, my husband suggested that we move to the USA and start my dream in this country. Changing my place of residence was not in my plans but I considered the option because my family was starting the best project of my life and having the support of a legal immigration status from my husband, it seemed like an interesting opportunity, I am a woman from Challenges and I started to interact in the fashion industry here in Los Angeles and I caught myself, I worked in two companies before starting my own business and I decided to start again in 2018, I used the same business model that I had in Mexico I set up a workshop and I started in my garage and 2019 Karla Ortega Fashion Studio opened the doors to the public in a local commercial and trusted God, the clients arrived and although I am not fluent in the language 100%, my work is my best communication tool.

The new designers come with ideas that we polish together and make their complete collections, currently I work with several brands of talented people and with such contrasting markets that every time I see a finished collection, I confirm that I was born for this. I am proud to be a small business that survived the pandemic and, in the face of many adversities, I continue to contribute to the economy of this country from which I have received a lot and creating sources of employment. Every day my dreams motivate me more and I am starting with a new project of which I am proud BYRKA is my own clothing brand that has an amulet stamp for me (the name is a mixture of my mother’s name and mine) is a Brand focused on Women for all sizes, where I am interested in that every woman who dresses with BYRKA feels comfortable and confident in herself, using Patternmaking as a resource to highlight the strengths of each type of body. With a range of silhouettes and garments at a fair price and with added value in the form of design, from basics to elaborate garments. And she is always attentive to what women are looking for to feel beautiful and to be able to project themselves to the world.

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
The language was undoubtedly an obstacle Lack of capital to do the type of business I wanted to have and the pandemic.

Any advice for finding a mentor or networking in general?
Trust yourself and believe that there is always an opportunity for everyone. Relate in the environment where you want to establish or undertake and always leave an open door with your clients, suppliers, contractors or companies where you have worked before because you never know when life can place you again with someone of those precious people in your life.

Contact Info:

  • Email: karlaortega.fashionstudio@gmail.com
  • Instagram: @karlaortega.fashionstudio @shopbyrka
  • Facebook: karla Ortega Fashion studio y Byrka

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