Phase 1: The eco ~ atelier
You know when there’s something don’t quite grasp yet but you feel it, itching, calling, pulling you towards it… you dream about it, you visualize it, you believe in it and then you finally answer the call.
Well, that’s kinda the feeling here with this project… since the beginning of the brand we dreamed with a creative sanctuary aligned with our vision and values, a place where we can flow at our own pace, one we feel inspired and connected with.
After 4 years of creating swimwear in 4 different rented spaces, from a living room with 2 machines to a local factory of mass production, we felt it was time to create our own. After all these years, we’ve been trained for it.
And that’s how it began 3 years ago, the creation of Sol Luna Atelier or like some like to call it, the eco~atelier.
Since day one we knew we wanted the whole process to be as sustainable as possible.
For this, we worked alongside with nature and our community by preserving the ecosystem + planting more trees around the building area, as for the construction we decided to first educate ourselves about bio-construction by attending workshops, investing many hours researching and on Pinterest (love it) then put together a team of local builders, carpenters, blacksmiths to give us a hand with more conventional techniques, although we have to admit the bio construction part was way more fun and pleasant to work with.
We had a clear vision of what we wanted, even thought we’ve never designed nor build something of this magnitud before from scratch. We felt confident in ourselves and strongly believe in the project since conception, which is, in my opinion, the fuel you need to make it happen.
There were all kinds of days & experiences. One day we were starting to cover the roof with aluzinc Vivi slipped from the top and couldn’t grab, oh man! its was too slippery, David tried to stop her but I inevitably ended up smashing the ground like a sack of potatoes surrendering to gravity… It was painful but she couldn’t stop laughing it was hilarious xD even David laughed, thank God no mayor injuries only a funny memory.
There was also a time we had to take a break because it was too much on our shoulders, so we paused for 5 months.
This taught us truths about ourselves individually and as partners, communication was key to flow trough the development. there were days we felt lost and confused and others we felt inspired and very optimistic. It wasn’t always pretty but it was mostly challenging and others time fun… still impressed by our creative power, humans you know. Through our minds to then be able to touch it with our hands. Its like you truly can create anything you can imagine if you are willing to dedicate your life to it for a while.
This thought us many things but one of the most important ones, in my opinion, is the fact that there’s always a better way to do it, you just need to intend to do it better and here im referring specifically to the ways we’ve been taught to do things which are not necesarily the best ways in most cases; like construction for example, some times we see people cutting down trees and destroying the natural area where they meant to build instead of integrating the project with nature and work alongside with her which is, according to our experience with this project, not only more beautiful but also less expensive because you don’t have to pay for machinery to modify what already is, more sustainable, more efficient and smarter in many ways. One example is, by preserving the trees around or inside the building area you’ll have to invest less in creating a healthy and confortable climate for the project because the trees will help you to keep it cool and fresh always. So its time to start unlearning what we’ve been taught and start learning new authentic ways.
The design of the Atelier was based in 2 main principles: Intuition and pragmatism. We believe that because of these two, the outcome ended up exceeding our expectations of the “original” design on paper by far! It just kept revealing itself progress after progress inspiring us more and more every time, reminding us it was worth the effort and that many great things are meant to be born from here. The dream is never fully achieved, it just keeps getting better and better.
We see this creative sanctuary as an expansion center of love, it is the basis of it… an extension of the very primal force that brought us here, together, Love.
This is the phase 1 out of 3 that forms the entire project we call Sol Luna Atelier. The second phase is a dry bathroom, a cellular shape food garden and an outdoor kitchen which is already being developed and phase 3 and, the most challenging one , is the gallery/store, the lab, our resting temple and a conference/teaching/learning/yoga open room made of bamboo and cana leaf.
Sol Luna Atelier is located in the mountains, in a rural area called Santo Cerro (the holy small mountain) which is in the center area of the island Quisqueya ~ La Hispaniola. From here it is expanding, energetically talking, to the surroundings including the entire community, country, it’s boundless really.
Since the culmination of phase 1 (the atelier) we’ve seen an increase of interest from family, friends and visitants in sustainable practices, asking questions, impressed by the results of bio-construction and even implementing some inspo. This gives us hope in humanity and it confirms, once again, that the best way to teach others is by example, to practice what we preach <3
This whole adventure has been a big leap of faith, trusting the unknown and let it reveal without attaching to any preconceived idea nor situation, to flow through, guided by intuition and our love for life. Thank you for being part of this, its been a pleasure to share our passion and message with you, its truly an honor to resonate with such awesome beings. This is you, this is us.
***Esta creación es una continuación del medio natural que la rodea, aun cuando se cierran todas las puertas y ventanas, no te sientes aislada, la conexión continua en armonía con lo natural. Lo puedes notar en el sonido como cambia de aves durante el día a insectos por la noche, diferentes criaturas que visitan desde mariposas hasta lucios, la ambientación de luz al transcurrir el día hasta el clima interior que proporciona toda la vegetación que rodea el atelier, te sientes parte de y otras veces sentimos que está vivo :’)