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An Afternoon With... Stella Nolasco

By Francheska N. Quiñones

Floating visions of lightweight fabrics glided within the opaque edges of Stella Nolasco's atelier.  A blurred shadow of Stella hurried down to fetch more pins for the model’s dress as I was welcomed in.  Dressed in a relaxed denim overall, she swiftly tailored the dress to the silhouette’s perfection.  Once she glanced over to the side of the room (adorned with hushed beauties), Stella welcomed me with the loveliest warm smile into her chic abode. 

“Go around and explore, I’ll finish tailoring the last looks in a few minutes”, she said while courageously holding a pin with her teeth.  My eyes wandered around the calm surroundings gazing at vivid illustrations and magazine cut outs she aesthetically placed on a framed board.  While waiting, I was kept company by her vivacious assistant, Yeisa Morales.  The communication between these two ladies filled the room with lightness and a good amount of tittering.  Blinding gleams from the camera’s flash (capturing a behind the scenes on the upcoming collection) gave an in vogue atmosphere to the model’s fittings.  Stella exuded a subtle calmness which banished any thought of tension for the final fittings of the models. 

Whilst the last pin was placed on a glistening white one piece, I dawdled among the sewing element of the atelier studying the construction of these fetching garments.  “All is tailored, where do you want me?  I somewhat still get nervous at these things.” she exhaled.  “Wherever you feel most comfortable, Stella.”  She gracefully placed herself in front of textile mannequins creating a photographic environment.  Stella spoke words of passion with a luxurious silky tonality.  She unfolded how the muse behind her new Spring ’14 collection, Eye Candy is solely based on the acclaimed game "Candy Crush".  "Each level had a distinguishable color that sparked my interest, from the white meringue, pastel bon-bons and ending up to the licorice" said Nolasco.  With textile suppliers from France and Holland the collection is nothing but high-end candy couture (think Ladurée macarons).

Stella’s eyes gleamed when speaking of her illustrative attributes; she popped out a somewhat small sketching book uncovering her edited proposals.  The gentle drawn illustrations sealed within the pages of her book add a vivid aesthetic to her creative process. “Fashion has been my life ever since I can remember; it is who I am, what shaped me into the person I have become.” For her, designing is a passion that graced her four-year-old mind and has never ceased to exist.  To have such amour for a fantasy and have it surface actuality is a heartwarming ardor words cannot describe.

With a never ending quench for what is new and grand she exuberantly exclaimed her thoughts for the future:  “For me, it won’t stop here.  I push myself to do grander things each season.  When the day comes and I get to show at New York Fashion Week, I can say that would be the culminating point in my career.” Moments passed and several topics were being conversed on; how her two daughters subconsciously partake in her innovative affairs, her love for Maison Valentino and the extensive list of names for her collection.  “The move to the new local in Santurce and the vast time I had to create these assortment of clothes did not alter the dominant structures of my brand”, she explained and for this, she is true.  While expressing my gratitude for the time given, her trademark tendencies of lace and black peak out of the clothes’ rack as I take a last view of her ivory atelier, reminding me of what started the brand: the classic chicness of the Nolasco name. 

This Friday, September 27, 2013, Stella Nolasco will grace us with her collection 'Eye Candy SS14' in benefit of Fundacion Gogui at Hotel San Juan Resort & Casino. RSVP 787.758.5959

Photos by  Herson Guerrero