Stephan Caras is a Toronto-based fashion label created by father-son design duo, Stephan and Kyriako Caras. Specializing in women’s eveningwear, Stephan Caras has been showcased on a global scale with runway presentations in Athens, Dubai, and most recently right here at TW (Toronto Women’s Fashion Week).
While the current collection focused on opulence and femininity, another word we would use to describe it is ‘red carpet ready’. These gowns are STUNNING! Learn about the Stephan Caras design duo and their glamorous fashion addiction below.
What brought you to the fashion industry?
As a young boy I spent a lot of time in my sister’s fashion studio. I was always playing with fabric scraps I found on the floor and tried to create various shapes. I was always intrigued by the endless number of things one can do with fabrics. As a teenager, I immersed myself in the world of fashion and acting where I attended the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, the Fashion Designer’s Academy of Melbourne, and the St. Martin’s Theatre School. Fashion design took me on a journey throughout five different continents, where I developed an international vision for design and I found myself designing with formidable fashion houses such as Guy Laroche, and Hermes in Paris. Kyriako Caras, who now co-designs our collections, grew up in the studio with me. From a young age, he began sewing sequins for me, putting fabrics together, and helped me in the workroom. As a teenager he began experimenting with all the scrap fabrics I used to have and from there, he really discovered himself as a designer and has flourished ever since.
How would you describe your line/brand?
CARAS, as a brand, designs for the self-assured woman of today. Subtle sensuality and feminine simplicity are never out of mind. The vision is to establish a new standard of elegance for women within our designs that are masterfully draped, well-tailored, and that emphasize femininity and luxury.
What do you love most about working in fashion?
Designing has been my life’s work and being creative has been a source of passion and strength in driving my designs. I find myself designing all the time, even when I am pre-occupied with the business aspect of this industry. I still find myself playing with ideas as I am doing this and creating concepts that I can re-examine in the future. I am constantly being inspired by lines, shapes, and colors that occur naturally, and I keep these in mind and figure out ways to materialize this through my own distinct interpretation. I believe that subconsciously, I am constantly challenging myself to design and create. This is what I love about the industry, that you have to constantly challenge yourself creatively.
What do you wish you could change about the fashion industry?
The way we dress demonstrates our individuality and the depth of our sensuality. Women exude elegance and class by wearing a timeless, well-fitted outfit, rather than following elaborate and short-lived trends. As a designer, this is key to me and my focus is to inspire and celebrate beauty across the board. Fashion should never discriminate or personify beauty, it simply can’t because it is art. These ideals are often jaded in a commercially driven market and we see this across many social mediums, not just in fashion. As an artist, it is contradictory to create and design objectively.
If you had any advice for people who aspire to work in fashion, what would it be?
It is a complete dedication and devotion to the craft. The challenges are ever-changing, and I one finds themselves constantly re-inventing in new and unique ways. Being creative occurs at any hour of the day and cannot happen between the hours of 9-5. It is an art of passion, and you have to constantly challenge yourself to “out-do” what you have done in previous collections. The challenge is finding the correct balance between artistically expressing yourself, materializing these concepts into reality, and making them feasible in today’s fast-paced globally driven market. If you can achieve this, it is intensively rewarding.
Check out photos from the latest CARAS runway show in Toronto below!