Chic. Modern. Sleek. The Natalia Sanz Collection. Inspired by architecture, geometry, and texture, Natalia creates classic silhouettes with modern details. While earning her Bachelor’s Degree in fashion design at Miami International University of Art and Design, Natalia’s designs were featured in Miami Fashion Week and Funkshion Fashion Week. Upon returning to Washington D.C., she began her career by designing pieces for Circle Boutique and Dekka Showroom as well as custom-fitting clients. Recently, her collections were featured in shows for D.C. Fashion Week, Crystal Couture, and NOVA Fashion Week. She is a 2012 Fashion Awards MD nominee in the Women’s Ready-To-Wear Designer category.
Mz Mahogany: Tell me about the Natalia Sanz Collection.
Natalia: The collection is an extension of who I am as a designer. Each piece is designed, from sketch to sample to completed garment, by me and represents my take on fashion. It is a contemporary ready-to-wear collection for the modern woman who seeks garments that are versatile and chic. I combine classic silhouettes with modern details and I like to play with asymmetry and angular shapes to create a streamlined look. I specialize in cocktail dresses but also create gowns, suits, tops, and bottoms.
Mz Mahogany: What brought you to the fashion world and specifically to starting your own line?
Natalia: I knew I wanted to be a designer at a young age and used to stay up late watching runway shows on the style channel. By the time I reached high school I began experimenting with sewing and creating my own designs. With the encouragement of my high school art teacher, I created a fashion design portfolio to apply for fashion and art colleges. I ended up going to Miami International University of Art and Design where I received my Bachelor of Arts in Fashion Design. Upon graduation I returned to the DC area and was working at local boutiques and freelancing for a couple designers. With the motivation of a family friend, who owned a boutique, I created my first collection, which I debuted in DC Fashion Week in September 2009. Since then I have been designing two collections a year and showing them at local shows and events.
Mz Mahogany: What was the most difficult aspect in launching your own label?
Natalia: The most difficult part of launching your own label is running the business. As a designer you are a creative and a hands on person but when you are running your own business you wear many hats and can’t focus only on design. Selling, marketing, pr, social media, and everything it takes to run the business become your priority while designing takes a backseat. My advice would be to get a business partner so you can focus on designing!
Mz Mahogany: How did it feel seeing your designs on the runway for the first time?
Natalia: It felt great to see my collection on the runway for the first time! I felt a great sense of accomplishment and pride. It reinforced my passion for design and made me think that all the hard work I put into the line is very much worth it. Every time I see my new collections go down the runway I feel the same way!
Mz Mahogany: Which fashion designers do you admire?
Natalia: There are so many designers I admire! I love Oscar De La Renta and Carolina Herrera because of their feminine and beautiful silhouettes but I absolutely love Versace and Zac Posen because of their innovative, modern aesthetic and sex appeal.
Mz Mahogany: What advice would you give a fashion newbie or student, looking to become a designer?
Natalia: My advice would be to follow your dreams! Don’t give up if someone says no to you or criticizes you. Learn from all of your experiences, good and bad, and move forward. Definitely do internships and apprenticeships to gain as much experience as possible.
MzMahogany: What’s next for the Natalia Sanz Collection?
Natalia: In the near future I would like to start expanding the line to add more gowns and separates to the assortment. I would like to create larger collections and participate in shows and events outside of the DC area.
For more information on Natalia Sanz and the Natalia Sanz Collection brand, please visit her website at http://www.nataliasanz.com