Michael Cinco on Hollywood stars and Singapore style
Filipino couturier Michael Cinco talks about his Hollywood celeb clients and the Singapore style scene
Ever since he could remember, one of Michael Cinco'sgoals as a fashion designer was to see his couture gowns being worn on the red carpet.
Now, 14 years after starting his eponymous label, the Dubai-based Filipino couturier has achieved this and more, with A-list celebrities all over the world coveting his expensive, intricate and glamorous designs.
The 45-year-old has dressed the likes of Beyonce, Lady Gaga, Jennifer Lopez, Britney Spears, Rihanna, Mariah Carey and Mila Kunis.
Cinco told The New Paper in an e-mail interview: "When celebrities wear my dresses, it helps to promote my brand to the wider market and many clients order the same outfits. It always helps when the gowns worn by celebrities translate into sales."
The first celebrity to wear a Cinco design was Colombian actress Sofia Vergara at the Golden Globe Awards in 2013.
He calls it a "defining moment" to see his slinky black beaded mermaid gown on her and whenever she mentioned his name when asked who she was wearing.
Cinco, who has appeared on seasons 16 and 17 of US reality modelling series America's Next Top Model, recalled: "I never thought that she would choose my dress among the racks and racks of couture gowns offered by other designers. I was in tears as I was watching and waiting to see if she was going to wear my gown or not. I felt so lucky that she did."
Cinco's favourite celebrities to dress so far are Lopez and Lady Gaga.
He said: "They are different personalities altogether, but both have the same attitude to fashion - unique and sexy.
“My Singapore clients are true connoisseurs of artfully crafted dresses, who know how to indulge in beautiful, coutureinspired tailoring.”Dubai-based Michael Cinco
"It has (also) been my dream to dress Cate Blanchett, Madonna and Angelina Jolie - strong women with a heart."
But before that happens, Cinco is hoping to make dreams come true for Singapore women with his involvement in COUTURiSSIMO, an affordable luxury brand that carries his "couture workwear" collection alongside international designers such as Sebastian Gunawan and On Aura Tout Vu, with prices ranging from $150 to $984.
It is now available at Takashimaya in Ngee Ann City until July 31, following the success of its first pop-up store last year.
Cinco said: "I felt truly blessed when Dr Frank Cintamani, the founding president of the Asian Couture Federation and COUTURiSSIMO, came up with this ground-breaking retail platform and the idea to utilise the creativity and the craft of couturiers like myself.
"When I say 'blessed', you need to know that the Asian Couture Federation consists of more than 100 outstanding designers, and I am truly honoured to hold its prestigious title, Asian Couturier Extraordinaire (which was conferred in 2013).
"The entire notion of COUTURiSSIMO is democratic and inclusive. Now, every woman can afford couture-infused dresses and, vice versa, every couturier can become a household name."
On Singapore's style scene, Cinco felt that it has changed for the better over the years, with stores here keeping up with fashion trends and brands
"Also, (Singapore is) familiar with couture, whether Parisian or international, through mega events organised by Fide Fashion Week and Asian Couture Federation in the past five years.
"Therefore, a true Singapore fashionista is familiar with couture, which is the essence of my work, and that is my customer in your city."
He added: "My Singapore clients are true connoisseurs of artfully crafted dresses, who know how to indulge in beautiful, couture-inspired tailoring. My COUTURiSSIMO woman is as cosmopolitan as every Singapore woman aspires to be."