Manuel De la Cruz is a Fashion Designer of womenswear and menswear high end collections.
Manuel was born and raised in Guatemala where he spent his early years studying drawing and painting. As a teenager he graduated from his first fashion school in his native Guatemala.
He left the family nest to explore his future in fashion. Landing in Florence Italy followed by Milano, he began studying and preparing for his career in fashion.
In the year 2000 he began attending continuing education courses at Parsons New York. His career as a freelance fashion designer was launched working under great designers and he gained experience which he continues to develop.
In November 2004 MDLC was founded and Manuel De la Cruz Collections began to be presented during New York Fashion Week.
Today Manuel works on his collection for men and women. His brand represents a very classic style fused with modern touches and clean lines.
What should everyone know about you?
MDLC: Manuel is about Classic Silhouettes fused with ethnic fabrics from Guatemala.
How would you describe what you do?
MDLC: I interpret and create fashion inspired in my memories from Guatemala
Why did you choose to be a designer?
MDLC: I always loved to work with the creative aspects and technical process of creating garments.
What steps did you take to become a designer?
MDLC: I started working as a Fashion illustrator a very young age (14 Years Old). At 17 years old I went to Fashion School in Italy, when I was 21 I was already graduated with a masters in tailoring. After that, I worked as a Designer Assistant for two designers in NYC for a year. I started to work as a freelance designer all over NYC and Europe where I learned a lot from the industry. In 2004 I decided to start a small collection under my label: Manuel De la Cruz. Today I work as a freelance designer and also make custom made dresses and suits for women and men.
Best/Most Challenging part of your job?
MDLC: Best: I can bring my ideas to life and to see people wearing them
Most: Budget, not always can afford to create fantastic outfits, sometimes they just end up being an idea, never developed.
If you weren’t a designer what would you be?
MDLC: I would be a realistic oil painter and photographer
How did you get started in design?
MDLC: When I was 12 I worked at my grandfather’s clothing factory
What do you like about what you do?
MDLC: I like being able to dream about something, anything. Then materialize it.
What’s a common misconception people have about what you do?
MDLC: That this is not a “real” job
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
MDLC: I see myself working on my own collection, full time.
What sparked your interest in design?
MDLC: At the beginning was beauty and fashion illustration, today I see there is more to it and I developed interest in all the areas of design, from being very artistic to a very technical aspect of it.
How has your work evolved since you began your career?
MDLC: In so many ways, I have learned so many great things from
People I admire since I was a kid and had the opportunity to work
With them, they have taught me personal, technical and wonderful things.
Are there any types of clothing/footwear/accessories that you avoid wearing?
MDLC: Whatever makes me feel uncomfortable and colorful.
What are you fascinated by at the moment and how does it feed into your work?
MDLC: I am fascinated by the fact that NASA has discovered new planets. That we are not alone in this huge universe and makes me feel that there are great things we can discover from ourselves and translate them into what we do.
What is the biggest lesson that you have learned since you started your career?
MDLC: Patience and persistence, for some designers come easy and not so easy to others like me.
What advice would you give to young designers?
MDLC: Be yourself in what you present, be unique and believe in what you do. Also, go and learn the technical aspects of the product you want to develop.
What would you like to achieve before the end of the year?
MDLC: I would like to launch a T-shirt and underwear line produced in NYC
Are you superstitious or do you have any rules you live by?
MDLC: I believe in karma, whatever you do to others that is what you will get back
What’s your motto?
Learn more about Manuel De la Cruz at StylePortfolios.com
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