Argentinian fashion designer Del Busto’s clothes at the Hollywood Museum
By Augusto Morel
Buenos Aires, February 1 (EFE).- Jorge del Busto dressed actresses Michael Learned, Carolyn Hennesy and Loretta Swit for the red carpet and now those clothes – works of art in themselves – are kept with 11,000 other items at the Hollywood Museum in Los Angeles.
The Argentinian designer, 53, opened the doors of his Buenos Aires “workshop” to EFE to discuss his more than 20-year career and his haute couture designs, including the three garments that are now housed in the museum from Los Angeles.
“I dressed them for the red carpet, with handmade clothes and with recycled materials. I think the outfit that cost me the most is Michael Learned’s, as it has almost a million beads and weighs between seven and 10 kilograms (15 and 22 pounds). These are one-of-a-kind garments, impossible to duplicate,” Del Busto said in his studio.
In contrast, the dress he prepared for Hennesy was of embroidered French lace over a metallic corset. “Everything was completely handmade and most of the dress has curtains that came from my living room,” the designer said, inserting English phrases into his Spanish description, as he has lived in the United States for 23 years. .
Strangely, he first became known to the public in the “fitness” industry, where he began to stand out for his ability in competitive aerobic gymnastics, his physical strength and his sense of fashion to equip himself.
“I became one of the top guys in fitness and social magazines. They always named me one of the best styled men in town, Chicago and LA. I got attention because of my Argentinian mixture, I don’t know, like a “refined gaucho?
In the early 2000s, he was a gym instructor, and since his students were used to going out to lunch and discussing business, he had the idea of designing a line of semi-formal sportswear.
It could have been a precursor for this style with which he caused a stir in 2010, but at that time he was already specializing in the world of high fashion, where the importance of a garment lies in the details, fabric and design.
“It depends on the basics. There are outfits that have a structure, others that… look like tunics, where the value is in the fabric and the looseness. They are made almost 100% by hand and with noble materials. It’s a rule for high fashion,” he said.
While many pray diligently for creative stimuli to hit them, Del Busto said his grandmother was his inspirational muse, as she advised him to follow his dreams. She, he said, was his role model for “impeccable elegance” and “the typical woman who doesn’t leave the house unless she’s made up, with her hair styled and neatly dressed.”
Born in the small town of Puerto Rico, in the province of Misiones, in the north of Argentina, and raised in Greater Buenos Aires, Del Busto had to face his father’s prejudice against his love of the fashion world in the age of 12.
“I imagined a collection of around 14 drawings, some of which were done in watercolor, on a clothing line that came to me. My family loved them, until I showed them to my dad. He tore up the sketches and burned them. He didn’t want to have a son who was dedicated to this,” Del Busto said, seemingly taking the matter in stride.
At 21, he decides to pack his bags and leave for Asuncion, where he works as a physical education teacher. His ability in the field of fitness allowed him to specialize and expand his horizons when he moved to Sao Paulo, eventually settling in Chicago.
“Find yourself with people who can help you. If you want to do it, you have to go where people do it,” was one of the pieces of advice his grandmother gave him that motivated him to emigrating to the U.S. There he entered the necessary circles that marked the world in which he wanted to work.
Simultaneously, he continually sought to acquire more knowledge and training so as not to be left behind in the ruthless and rapidly changing world of fashion, but he never lost his sense of style. “These courses have kept me up to date. My designs have less to do with the times than with what my clients want,” he said.
Although fashion is a cyclical industry, Del Busto has non-negotiable rules in designing her designs, including “There are things that can be emphasized and things that must be hidden no matter what.”
“Shoulders, neck and bodice, there is always something to highlight. Age and weight don’t matter, it should be emphasized without being common”, he said, adding that his ideal model should be “a clothes rack”, tall, slender, without too many chest and elegant.
And he concluded: “There’s never really a good excuse to say, ‘I’m not going to dress well. You can always dress well.