Upon walking up to the Bushwick destination that Raul Lopez chose for his latest Luar presentation, it was clear that a robust crowd would be arriving in minutes. In due time, the warehouse became filled to capacity. Given that the designer had concluded New York Fashion Week last season, the expectations were exceptionally high this time around. With the concept of heaven and redemption in mind, Lopez deliberately centered his creative vision around these themes for the Spring/Summer 2024 season.
Titled “Socorro,” an homage to his mother, translates to “help.” Show notes point to an experience that Lopez would use to further inspire him: riding in a Volvo truck that halted outside of his best friend’s home in a region of the Dominican Republic known as “El Hoyo” or “the hole” in Spanish. When he looked to one side, he saw a woman preaching on a makeshift podium—this struck him and offered him a moment to self-reflect as he also saw “hedonism” on the opposite side: people drinking and hanging out. This duality pushed him to explore the daily push and pull he’s experiencing as a designer. “This notion of being ‘pulled back’ is one that speaks to Lopez as he ascends in the industry but remains tethered to his roots,” the show notes read.
Throughout the collection, robust collars hint at “being chained to something” perhaps religion or ideals of being unpretentious. There are also crackled leather pieces that are a representation of the walls of “El Hoyo.” Long skirts with an excess of buttons were meant to challenge the notion of modesty. The Ana bag also was infused into multiple looks, it was utilized as a work bag at one point in the presentation. Additional standouts in the range included eclectic eyewear, tailored button-down shirts, and suiting separates. The pieces felt intrinsically grown-up, but also as if they were created to explore feelings that come up when one is being pulled down two separate paths. Taking it back to the story that inspired the entire line, the show notes also expand on this. “Lopez imagines how each side ponders what it’s like to be on the other – to the left, what it would mean to let go, and to the right, what it would mean to clean oneself up.” The consensus is that “each side always pulls its affiliates back to it.”
With this being his tenth presentation, in total it was a range filled with essentials for many occasions (office wear or attire you set aside for after-hours cocktails with friends). And yet at its core, some pieces were meant to appear as disruptive, but instead, they came across as safe and disciplined. Perhaps that’s what Lopez aimed to deliver, a lineup of core clothing that one can look to for everyday wear.