A taste of Latin America at Fashion Week

Latino designers showcase their latest collection By Mercedes Sanchez

oscar de la renta In the midst of American designers, a number of affluent and emerging Latino designers are in New York for Fashion Week. Some are recognized worldwide while others are still growing within mainstream media. But no matter where they rank in popularity, they all have one thing in common: love for their Latino heritage.

Of course you've heard of the Venezuelan designer Carolina Herrera who's known for her classic and sophisticated dresses and pant suits, and the Dominican Oscar de la Renta (left) who's among one of the biggest names in high fashion and worn among celebrities on the red carpet.

But showing his collection for the first time at Lincoln Center (though he's presented at Bryant Park when Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week was called 7th on Sixth) is Cesar Galindo, a Mexican-American designer who moved to New York from Houston 25 years ago. Galindo will be showcasing, not one, but two collections this season: Czar by Cesar Galindo- which consists of more contemporary, fun dresses, and the Cesar Galindo Collection with more formal, elegant gowns.

Colombian designer Juan Carlos Obando stopped by the Big Apple from Los Angeles to showcase his evening wear at the Park Avenue Armory. His presentation consisted of formal dresses (and some sleek pants) with bold textures and silk fabrics inspired by his interest in graphic design. His clothes are available at Barney's.

Designing came naturally to Carlos Campos-- a New York based designer who was born in El Salvador and raised in Honduras. His father was a tailor and designing was in his blood. Campos has dressed many celebrities and has created costumes for plays like The Graduate, Fiddler on the Roof, and Jersey Boys.

Raul Peñaranda was born in Colombia and raised in Venezuela and then relocated to Miami. He's now based in New York after studying in F.I.T. and Parson's School of Design, and will be presenting his edgy, glamorous gowns this week.

Read my Spanish-language article in El Diario/La Prensa

Edwing D'Angelo, a Colombian designer also from New York, presented his collection on Sunday at Limelight in Sixth Avenue. He's dressed celebrities like Winona Judd and Marc Consuelos.

custo barcelona spring 2013Spanish designer Custo Dalmau, of Custo Barcelona, who's known for mixing patterns and colors also presented his Spring 2013 on Sunday.

Argentinian Lucio Castro is a menswear designer known for using Japanese and organic fabrics, presented his collection at The Standard Hotel.

Rafael Cennamo, who is Venezuelan and Italian, launched his label in 2006 and is now recognized for his elegant couture designs and evening wear.

Brazilian designer Carlos Miele returns to the Lincoln Center on Monday. In his Fall 2012 collection, Miele had models walk the runway with traditional wool ponchos, boleros and hats. We can't wait to see what he has in store for us this season.

Model and Television Personality Daisy Fuentes will also be showcasing her latest styles at an off-site location by Chelsea.

Other big names returning to New York Fashion Week are Angel Sanchez and Rolando Santana.

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