Southwest Airlines and Carla Fernandez team up to create line of up-cycled Fashion Accessories

Indigenous Artisans in Seven Mexican Cities Infuse Centuries Old Textile & Embroidery Designs to Preserve Mexican Traditions

Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) announced today a line of upcycled fashion accessories as a result of a multi-year collaboration with Mexican fashion label Carla Fernández that will upcycle hundreds of pounds of leather from airplane seat covers into goods in the coming months.  The line of products from LUV Seat: Mexico, which are created from used leather seat covers and handcrafted by indigenous artisans in seven Mexican communities, range from shoes and bags to ponchos and key chains.

LUV Seat: Mexico is an expansion of Southwest’s Repurpose with Purpose global sustainability initiative, which began in 2013 following the Evolve retrofit program that replaced the aircraft leather seat covers. By providing leather to Carla Fernández, Southwest® reduces the amount of waste the airline sends to landfills while also generating social and economic opportunities for communities.

The style of Carla Fernandez

“Southwest Airlines is proud to partner with Carla Fernández on LUV Seat: Mexico as a part of our Repurpose with Purpose program,” said Bill Tiffany, Southwest Airlines Vice President Supply Chain Management.  “Through this impactful program, indigenous artisans have been able to incorporate their trades into the designs to create some incredible pieces while learning essential economic development skills through entrepreneurial training programs.”

Carla Fernández worked with artisans in seven different communities throughout Mexico who specialize in creating textile and embroidery designs and handcrafts that preserve the country’s rich cultural heritage. The Carla Fernández brand’s work, which combines centuries-old techniques and long-standing traditions in the creation of their designs, has achieved international recognition and acclaim.

Carla Fernández works closely with the artisans, who are compensated, as they learn how to develop new products and skills.

“Working with the Southwest team on this project, which seeks to create social and economic impact, has been a great experience for us,” said Carla Fernández, who founded her eponymous label in 2000. “We feel we have found friends and partners after a couple of years of constant communication and hard work in delivering these great products.”

“We are confident that LUV Seat: Mexico will be a success and we know it will be a benchmark for other similar endeavours,” Fernández added.

Carla Fernández is a Mexico-City based fashion label inspired by the geometrics and textile richness of Mexico. The brand has gained international acclaim for its approach to preserving the rich cultural heritage of Mexico’s indigenous communities. A change agent and an innovator, bringing new meaning to luxury fashion, the Carla Fernández team travels throughout Mexico visiting communities of artisans that specialize in handmade textiles, utilizing centuries-old indigenous techniques. This labour-intensive approach is helping to sustain long-standing traditions and the people who collaborate with the brand.

In its 47th year of service, Dallas-based Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) continues to differentiate itself from other air carriers with exemplary Customer Service delivered by more than 55000 Employees to a Customer base topping 115 million passengers annually, in recent years. Southwest became the nation’s largest domestic air carrier in 2003 and maintains that ranking based on the U.S. Department of Transportation’s most recent reporting of domestic originating passengers boarded. During peak travel seasons, Southwest operates more than 4000 weekday departures among a network of 100 destinations in the United States and ten additional countries. Southwest has announced its intention to sell tickets in 2018 for service to Hawaii, subject to requisite governmental approvals.

Southwest coined Transfarency® to describe its purposed philosophy of treating Customers honestly and fairly, and low fares actually staying low. Southwest is the only major U.S. airline to offer bags fly free® to everyone (first and second checked pieces of luggage, size and weight limits apply, some carriers offer free checked bags on select routes or in qualified circumstances), and there are no change fees, though fare differences might apply.

As launch customer of the Boeing 737 MAX 8 in North America, the Company operates the largest fleet in the world of Boeing aircraft, all of which are equipped with satellite-based WiFi. Customers who connect to the WiFi network may use their personal devices to view on-demand movies and television shows, as well as nearly 20 channels of free, live TV.

With a bold new look first unveiled in 2014, Southwest is progressing through a multi-year refresh of its fleet to showcase the carrier’s Heart: a new logo, aircraft livery, interior design featuring new seats, Employee-designed uniforms, and an updated airport experience, all of which showcase a dedication of Southwest Employees to connect Customers with what’s important in their lives.

From its first flights on June 18, 1971, Southwest Airlines launched an era of unprecedented affordability in air travel described by the U.S. Department of Transportation as “The Southwest Effect,” a lowering of fares and increase in passenger traffic wherever the carrier serves. With 44 consecutive years of profitability, Southwest is one of the most honoured airlines in the world, known for a triple bottom line approach that contributes to the carrier’s performance and productivity, the importance of its People and the communities they serve, and an overall commitment to efficiency and the planet. The 2016 Southwest Airlines One Report™ can be found at

It is still early to evaluate the implications of the scepticism regarding the flow of goods and services around the world. The comparison of two measures of openness for the last decade do not seem promising for the time being. Will the outlook of movement of goods, people and ideas change in the future? Undoubtedly yes, I believe. Ongoing transformation is perceptible in many levels. The digital revolution defines the current status of and the future changes in various elements in the economy. There is, for instance, profound change in the openness around the world in the movement of ideas. How the openness with respect to trade is to be transformed remains an open question for further research.