When it comes to fashion designers from the Spanish-speaking world, there can be few names that are better known than that of Carolina Herrera. Renowned for her personal style, she was named on the International Best Dressed list back in 1972 and inducted to its Hall of Fame in 1980. Her designs have been worn by First Ladies of the United States, of which she became a naturalised citizen in 2009, and her gowns have graced many a red carpet on actresses such as Renée Zellweger, Cameron Diaz and Nicole Kidman, and Colombian singer Shakira.
Born María Carolina Josefina Pacanins y Niño on January 8, 1939, in the Venezuelan capital Caracas, her father was Guillermo Pacanins Acevedo, a former governor of the city, and her mother was María Cristina Niño Passios. She was introduced to the world of fashion at an early age by her socialite grandmother who took her to shows by Balenciaga – mentor of Oscar de la Renta if you recall from our blog a couple of weeks ago – and bought her outfits by Dior and Lanvin.
Later, she rubbed shoulders with the likes of Mick Jagger and Andy Warhol at Studio 54 in the heyday of the New York nightclub and in 1981 started her own clothing line at the suggestion of the then Editor-in-Chief of Vogue, Diana Vreeland. She did so, and enjoyed almost immediate success. Her chic and feminine designs have won her many devotees since then, and her place in the annals of fashion history seems assured.
Do you know your way around the vocabulary of clothing in Spanish? If you want to learn your suits from your sweatpants or your cotton from your corduroy, our Spanish courses in London can help you with this and much more.