The 15 Greatest Latino Designers Of All Time!

New York’s Fashion Week may be hitting its finale soon, but we are honoring the top Latino fashion designers who have paved the way and produced remarkable designs that keep us yearning for more. – With reporting by Jarleen Samboy

1.

Narciso Rodriguez, this Cuban-American, known for his clean lines and minimalistic designs made a splash when he designed the wedding dress of the late John F. Kennedy Jr.’s wife, Carolyn Bessette, and later went on to be awarded Designer of the Year by the Council of Fashion Designers of America.

Backstage Beauty at Fashion Week: Narciso Rodriguez

2.

It’s an honor to know that one of the ultimate fashion icons of our time, Oscar de la Renta, uses his native country, the Dominican Republic, as inspiration for some of his designs. Before designing Oscar studied painting in Spain, but it’s safe to say that we’re all happy he found his true calling.

WATCH: Oscar de la Renta on How Women Have Changed Since He Started Designing Clothes

3.

After deciding to design clothes in her 30’s Venezuelan born Carolina Herrera, is known for her refined, exuberant and rich designs that are worn by everyone from Sofia Vergara to Penelope Cruz.

Ahead of the Trends: Carolina Herrera's Ladylike Sophistication

4.

Spanish designer, Cristobal Balenciaga, rose to fame by dressing Spanish aristocrats. Until he was forced to close shop and head to Paris, where his business and reputation as a maestro grew. Today his namesake line is under the creative guidance of Nicolas Ghesquière.

CELEB STYLE POLL: Salma Hayek's Paris Fashion Week Frocks

5.

Raised in the Canary Islands, Manolo Blahnik became a household name thanks to the uber popular show, Sex and the City. Not long after all the fashion darlings favored his chic simple heels that mixed sexy, chic and luxurious all in one shoe.

This Week's Style Icon: Manolo Blahnik

6.

The part-Spanish designer, John Galliano, may be a controversial subject at the moment because of his inappropriate comments, but one thing that’s certain is his exquisite talent as a designer bringing fashion labels like Christian Dior back to the forefront in the fashion world.

Penelope Cruz Guest-Edits Vogue Paris

7.

Brazilian designer, Francisco Costa, worked at Oscar de la Renta before joining Calvin Klein where he became the sole designer for the women’s collections maintaining old fans and garnering new ones with his minimal chic designs.

Eva Mendes Steps Out With Francisco Costa for National Design Awards

8.

Lazaro Hernandez is one half of the dynamic duo the fashion industry knows as Proenza Schouler. The Cuban-American designer was pre-med before he decided to pick up and relocate in New York to go into fashion. Proenza Schouler has received recognition from the CFDA and celebs alike.

Turkeys by Proenza Schouler

9.

In the 1980’s, Custo Barcelona was created by Spanish brothers David and Dalmau Custo. The designers came to the attention of the some organizers of New York Fashion Week and subsequently presented their collections during the spring 1997 season. The designs of Custo Barcelona are bold and their fabrics and designs exuberant in color making them stand out in the crowd.

Fashion Week Spotlight: Custo Barcelona

10.

The Cuban-American designer Isabel Toledo was well trained as a Parson’s New School of Design and FIT alum and the world got to see her talent when the First Lady wore one of Toledo’s pieces to the inauguration.

Isabel Toledo Designing Affordable Shoe Line

11.

This Sao Paolo native, Carlos Miele, loves creating intricate yet bold designs paying homage to the ultra sexy woman with plunging necklines, low backs, and thigh-high hemlines.

Ahead of the Trends: Carlos Miele's Draped Designs

12.

Alejandro Ingelmo followed in the footsteps of his Cuban grandmother as a shoe designer only his designs are fierce and modern, which won him a Swarovski Award for Accessory Design by the CFDA.

Celeb Look of the Week: Alessandra Ambrosio

13.

Christian Cota’s native Mexico is the source of inspiration as can be seen from his fall 2012 collection. Cota spent two weeks in Mexico and it was here where the handy crafts and textiles of tribes enthused him so much he decided to feature some of these elements in his designs.

Fashion Week Spotlight: Christian Cota

14.

Brian Reyes, the Miami native, left for New York at the age of 17 to work with designer Oscar de la Renta. It was then he developed his skills to later go on and design a collection of his own counting Cate Blanchett and America Ferrera as followers.

FASHION WEEK: Brian Reyes Comes Back to Earth

15.

Carlos Campos, born in Honduras, founded his company in 2006. Campos is a Fashion Institute of Technology alum, and former Broadway costumer designer. His strength lies in tailoring, as is evident in his sharp designs.

FASHION WEEK: Carlos Campos Rocks Our World

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