Latino designers have been making waves in the American fashion industry for decades, from classic brands like Oscar de la Renta to new emerging brands like LUAR. Not until recently have we acknowledged the contributions and success Latinx designers have provided to the fashion industry as a whole. In Honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month, we highlighted some of the most influential Latinx designers in history.
When you think iconic Latin designer, most think of Oscar de la Renta. Simply put, he paved the way for Latinx designers in the industry when many weren’t recognized for their talents. The Dominican-born artist focused on elegance and timeless silhouettes and patterns with each design creating a piece that can last for decades without going out of style.
The Honduran designer founded his eponymous company back in 2006. Known internationally for his colorful designers, he moved to New York at 13 to pursue fashion. Campos studied at the Fashion Institute of Technology, and then went on to design costumes on Broadway for Fiddler on the Roof and Jersey Boys. In 2011, he made history as the first Latino finalist for the prestigious Council of Fashion Designers of America,
One part of the label Proenza Schouler, the Cuban designer launched the brand with Jack McCollough in 2002 as a thesis project. The collection was soon bought entirely by Barneys, bringing Proenza Schouler to the masses. Hernandez was born to Cuban parents in Miami, and his line has expanded across countless department stores.
Born to an American father and Mexican mother, now Paris-based Owens has taken the fashion scene at the helm. His designs — sometimes seen as impractical — have transformed the industry and created a fantasy cult following. His fans lovingly refer to him as the “Lord of Darkness” and he can be seen walking around Paris in all black, tall black boots, and cloaked attire even on the sunniest days.
Cofounder of the high fashion streetwear brand Hood By Air, Dominican designer Raul Lopez launched LUAR (Raul spelled backward) in September of 2018. His designs — which are gender fluid and futuristic — are heavily influenced by his upbringing as a queer Latinx in New York City.
Fernando Garcia is the current co-creative director of Oscar Dela Renta and Monse. Garcia is of Dominican decent, and he first got his start in fashion at interning at (fittingly) Oscar de la Renta in Paris as a college student. In 2015, he founded the contemporary label Monse, which is beloved by celebrities and fashionistas for its fun, lively take on everyday wear.
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