“Corporate was the first thing I noticed when moving to the city,” Orlando Espinoza told me during a visit to his Chicago-based showroom. Since moving to Chicago from LA, that was nine years ago. Since then Orlando Espinoza has earned the reputation of dressing the working woman in strong and confident ensembles that turn to fashion classics. Espinoza has been called “The Modernist”, not because of his forecasting of trends – in fact he emphatically avoids them – but more so of taking looks that transcend trends by taking a classic look with just enough edge to always make his clothing fashion-forward and altogether timeless.
“My clients are the working woman and entrepreneur,” he continued. “She still needs the practical dress for her first meeting at 10am and for her after-party at a restaurant late in the evening.” Many of Espinoza’s pieces are versatile enough to not even need to throw an extra pair of fishnets and heels into your bag for you to turn your office look into an evening ensemble. Tops and dresses have hidden zippers in the front to go from conservative to cleavage, some backs feature peek-a-boo sections that can be covered by a blazer or cardigan and when displayed wouldn’t show any segments of the bra straps, and some dresses featured front slits or cut-outs that could be easily covered by a camisole for work and revealed for an evening out. And for those of you who still crave that cocktail dress or evening gown, don’t worry, Espinoza designs those looks as well.
And in this economy, Espinoza’s and other designers’ contributions to the working woman’s fashions couldn’t be more vital. In a time when people are struggling to either attain a job or keep a job, everything about his or her work style is observed and reviewed – even one’s attire. “In this competitive state that we’re in, clothing is a factor in keeping one’s job!” exclaimed Espinoza. Even Espinoza has felt the effects of the economy.
“It’s not about the boutiques anymore. It’s about the relationships,” he said. Many designers are turning their showrooms into their own boutiques and instead of primarily keeping communication strictly between the buyer and and the designer, it is going directly to the customer or communicated to them through stylists and consultants. In a way, Espinoza shared, it is bringing back the most important part of running a business: customer service.
So to follow suit to Espinoza’s statement of the importance of customer service, he is providing you, dear working readers, one thing that you can not live without: a dress. Every working woman, according to Espinoza, should never be without a classic working dress. And for the season, Espinoza stated that every working woman should consider the wool jersey dress “that accentuates her shape and her beauty”.
For more information on Orlando Espinoza, contact his studio at 312-829-4009, or log on to his Web site at www.orlandoespinoza.com
Photos courtesy of Orlando Espinoza and OrlandoEspinoza.com