Amelia Toro: Big in Bogota
Three Colombian designers are gaining buzz in the U.S.
“I love black—I’m very New York,” says Amelia Toro, who grew up in Bogotá and Manhattan. In fact, her refined, minimalist designs would look stylish in just about any town. For Toro, who launched her business in 1990 and opened a Manhattan boutique nestled among the art galleries in Chelsea last year, fashion can be transformative in more ways than one. She makes a point of giving credit where credit is due when it comes to her employees, and she bucks the industry norm of assembly-line-style manufacturing. Each garment is produced start-to-finish by a single seamstress, whose name is placed on the label alongside Toro’s. This way, Toro says, “she feels like she’s participating in the company. It’s not just about her salary. She’s respected. She has a skill.”