Photography by Vanessa Valdovinos

Chiffon, satin and feathers! Latino Fashion Week kicked off with a gusto this year at Crimson Lounge, chicly decorated with a deep red and gold interior, spotlights and a whole lot of beautiful people. Under a theme of “impacto” local and national designers showcased their garments, giving us a preview of what promises to be an energy filled, community-driven week of fashion.

High volume salsa beats bounced around the room as Julius LaCour Jr. began the night’s event with a black satin fitted blazer with crocodile heads on each shoulder. I was immediately won over. Minx Parlor’s yellow-orange chiffon dress with grey sash also caught my eyes for its elegant combination of colors and materials. Designer Claudia Urrutia introduced a line of gorgeous fur coats with high details on pattern and lines, turning them into timeless items that rightfully demand a second glance.

As I looked around the room I saw people who, in the moment of celebrating Latino fashion world and culture, shared warmth and support for one another. It took me away from all the glamorous models and flashes of photographers for a second and made me see this vibrant community. And I thought, what better city to host this event than Chicago, the small big city we call home.

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