Over 200 guests comprised of textile industry experts, politicians, international trade policymakers, fashion media, global corporation representatives and distinguished guests sipped refreshing Macchu Pisco cocktails at the residence of Ambassador of Peru to the United States of America Luis Miguel Castilla.
The summer evening garden party, hosted in conjunction with the Peru’s Ministry of Foreign Trade and Tourism (Mincetur), celebrated the very best in Peruvian textiles and talent in fashion design.
In honor of President Barack Obama’s 100,000 Strong in the Americas initiative, which focuses on dramatically increasing educational exchanges between the U.S., Latin America and the Caribbean, four Peruvian students studying at the Fashion Institute of Technology were invited to showcase their work on statuesque pedestals dotting the residence’s lovely garden landscape.
Student designs by Mayra Vidaurre, Micaela Orellana, and Sen Carlos Zerpa Morioka drew admiring crowds munching on Peruvian savory bites from Peruvian Brothers, Del Campo and Sardi’s Manassas while Cristina Gonzales, a photography student, snapped away in her own artistic medium.
The main event featured renowned Peruvian designer, Sergio Davila, who glided through the crowds easily in one of his signature lightweight Lima-chic fitted suits. Sergio is quickly making his mark on the American fashion scene and was the first Peruvian to ever showcase at New York Fashion Week.
Guests previewed Sergio’s Spring/Summer 2016 collection which emphasized warm pastel colors and the natural textiles with an intelligent, chic style. They described the collection as energetic and as full of life, while also offering balance and perspective. Davila is well-known for his interpretation of sportswear sophistication doused with strong touches of warmth, using ultra-soft fabrics including pima cottons and baby alpaca blend with silk.
Prior to the show, master of ceremonies, Frances Holuba from the White House, presented the four FIT Peruvian students, who took their first steps on a professional fashion show catwalk.
Guests then heard from Juan Luis Reus, Director of Peru Trade, Tourism and Investment Office in Washington, D.C. as well as Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs Roberta Jacobson who was recently nominated by President Obama, to become the new U.S. ambassador to Mexico.
Ambassador Luis Miguel Castilla gave warm welcoming remarks, highlighting the increased engagement in recent months between the United States and Peru.
The fashion show is part of a year-long celebration of the vibrancy, history and biodiversity of Peru in Washington, D.C. It includes the public debut of the Smithsonian’s National Zoo’s newest Andean bear cubs, the opening of “The Great Inka Road: Engineering an Empire” exhibition at the National Museum of the American Indian and the Smithsonian Folklife Festival.
Pictures by: Peruvian Embassy in the U.S. and Patrick G. Ryan