Latino designers assume the spotlight
May 20, 2012
By Kellie Hwang
Latin design will strut the catwalk at the inaugural Latino Fashion Live — an upscale event filled with haute couture, glamor and beautiful people.
The show will highlight Latino designers, including Venezuelan-born Carolina Herrera, Spanish jewelry brand Tous and Tucson’s Indi Apparel. Tango, samba and flamenco performances will be interspersed among the fashion segments.
Hosted by the Scottsdale Internet Group and Ideaz Media, the Saturday, May 26, event targets the high-end Latino consumer and helps bring attention to emerging Latinos in the Arizona fashion industry.
“We want to show that Arizona does have a place for fashion,” said Diana Prieto-Bernal of Ideaz Media, “and what better way to grow it than through the Latino market? Latinos here make up a big percentage of the market and have a lot of buying power.”
The two-hour runway show has a little of everything, including cocktail dresses from Carolina Herrera, menswear and shoes by Roberto Botticelli and jet-setting looks from Diana Lopez’s Indi Apparel label.
“I wanted to be a part of this show as a Latina and an Arizona local,” Lopez said. “The Latino market is a much bigger one than I ever imagined, and I didn’t realize this until I started making clothes. I had to stop and think about who I’m selling to, and figure out how to reach out to the Latino community.”
Lopez creates mostly travel and dance clothing. Some of her pieces are influenced by Argentine tango, blending sexiness with comfort. Many of her designs feature drawstrings and removable pieces, and they can be worn in various ways.
“I would love to show Latinas that there are different forms of design out there,” she said. “Sometimes people can get close-minded when exposed to certain fashions, and I want Latinas everywhere to know they can be beautiful and sexy, as well as comfortable and confident.”
Models will strut in sexy, lingerie-influenced bikinis by Beach Bunny Swimwear of Los Angeles, which has a store at Scottsdale Quarter.
“We haven’t really tapped into the Latino market, yet we’ve gotten a ton of response from that demographic,” Beach Bunny marketing director Cassie Palmeri said. “Our bikinis have always been Brazilian cut, which is a big draw to our line. Women want to look fashionable and sexy lying out by the pool and embrace their curves.”
GiGi Bridal Boutique from Tucson rounds out the evening with wedding gowns. The models, provided by the Agency Arizona, will walk to Latin-influenced beats from a DJ from Latino Vibe (95.1 FM).
Mexican beauty Paloma Teran is the featured model for the evening. Before the event, the organizers teamed up with the Agency Arizona in search of up-and-coming Latina models. Two were chosen to walk in the show with the chance to earn modeling contracts.
Source: The Arizona Republic