Filipino fashion designer Michael Cinco has wowed Hollywood’s top stylists and fashionistas with his first collection show in Los Angeles. Since Sofia Vergara and Britney Spears wore gowns by the Catbalogan, Samar native at the 2013 Golden Globe Awards and Elton John AIDS Foundation Oscars party, respectively, LA’s tastemakers have become curious about the Dubai-based designer.
As proof of Michael’s emergence in the fashion world, Style Fashion Week LA gave its grand finale slot to him. The show was staged at Vibiana (a cathedral-turned-event space) in downtown LA.
The UP Diliman Fine Arts major (he studied there until second year), who also went to Slim’s Fashion & Arts School and then to Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London, welcomed the chance to show his collection in Tinseltown, of course. “I want to attract more top stylists to use my clothes for their superstar clients,” he said, noting that more Hollywood stars wearing his exquisitely ornamented creations would help his brand go global.
Professing to have been inspired by old Hollywood glamour icons like Grace Kelly, Marlene Dietrich and Audrey Hepburn since he was growing up in Samar, Michael said: “It has always been my dream to see my couture gowns on the Hollywood red carpet in Hollywood. Sofia Vergara is one of the sexiest actresses in the United States. Seeing her wearing my gown in the Golden Globes was a dream-come-true for me. I was ecstatic when the press loved Britney’s look in my gown at the Oscars after party.”
Lady Gaga wore another show-stopping Cinco creation at a Chicago Bulls gala charity event last January.
Asked why he thought more and more major celebs were strutting on the red carpet in his designs, Michael replied, “I think it’s because my clothes are crystallized and embellished, yet very elegant—and they look expensive.”
The designer, who moved to Dubai in 1997 and opened his couture house there in 2003, reported that he received emails from Sofia and Britney’s respective reps after the two women made a splash in his gowns. He disclosed, “Britney’s stylist is asking me to do another creation for her new project.”
We asked Michael which Hollywood actresses he was hoping to dress up someday. “It has always been my dream to see Cate Blanchett wearing my couture creation on the red carpet,” he replied. “I think her style is effortless and she is so luminous. Angelina Jolie is a dream. And Julia Roberts—timeless.”
On whether he might move to the United States—or maybe open a branch in New York or Los Angeles—he said: “At the moment, there are some stores in the US and Brazil who are interested in my bridal and couture collections. Everything is still under negotiation. My couture bridal gowns are now available in Russia. But I want to be based only in Dubai.”
Aside from staging the show, what else did he hope to accomplish while in LA? “To be an actor in Hollywood,” joked the Filipino pride, who also created designs for “America’s Next Top Model: Cycle 16” and worked with the show’s host, Tyra Banks.
How did he envision his career five years from now? Michael said, “I’d like to be part of Paris Fashion Week by that time.”
(Story courtesy of Ruben Nepales of the Philippine Daily Inquirer. Email the columnist at rvnepales_5585@ yahoo.com. Follow him at twitter.com/nepalesruben)