By Larisa May
Lauren-Bacall Snowden is the name behind Sueño, one of the featured designers at Arizona Fashion Week (AZFW). Sueño, which means “to dream” in Spanish, is a culmination of dreams for Snowden.
Growing up, Snowden spoke Spanish at home, which lent inspiration to her brand name. Her company’s branding isn’t the only thing Snowden feels her heritage has influenced.
“There’s a lot of Cuban influence in how I create things, like the finished product and the vision,” Snowden stated.
As for what inspires her to create these designs, the possibilities are endless.
“My inspiration comes from everywhere – and I mean literally everywhere,” Snowden emphasized. “Sometimes it’s a mood, sometimes a song, or I’ll see something on television, or I’ll see a fabric that makes me want to make something.”
Other times, just as the name suggests, the designs start out as a dream before becoming something more.
“I daydream a lot, so the name Sueño is kind of literal,” Snowden said. “So whenever I’m thinking about something or I’m dreaming of something, I just try to sketch it out and make it real. I saw it in my mind, and I want to make it so that’s in front of me.”
Bringing designs to fruition is a big part of Snowden’s day-to-day experience as a designer. But for her, the work is more like play.
“The creativity has to come out in some way, you know? If you can find the one thing that makes you feel like you’re living a little bit, the thing you wake up thinking about and go to bed thinking about – that’s what Sueño is for me,” Snowden said.
Over the past few years, this dream has slowly been becoming fulfilled. While Snowden is an experienced designer, it wasn’t until a few years ago that she officially opened Sueño.
“I’ve been sewing for about nine years, off and on,” Snowden said. “I recently started Sueño officially, about two years ago. So the brand itself is fairly new. I’ve made a lot of things over the years, but it was just recently that I decided I was going to go for it and make a whole brand with my license and LLC.”
Snowden’s new brand comes at a great time for Arizona’s fashion scene. As the industry starts to pick up speed, designers are starting to make an impact in the Arizona community.
“I think the Arizona fashion industry is still new, I feel like it’s budding,” Snowden said. “It makes me think of a plant that’s still pretty green, but is thriving. I moved here from Washington, and I was there for ten years. In Seattle, fashion is like down the street. Everybody is wearing what they want, no one is wearing the same thing, and there are boutiques everywhere. We’re starting to have that here, and I feel like it’s starting to open up, it just needs one more push.”
That last push may very well come from AZFW. The new fashion experience has been highlighting local designers such as Snowden and creating a more interconnected fashion community.