Christian Cota: In Good Company
Last year’s Fashion Group International Rising Star Award winner has been having a rather good time of it lately. Just to pluck an example out of thin air, at random: He designed Michelle Obama’s inauguration
gown. Nice work if you can get it, sure, but all the buzz attending Jason Wu has raised expectations precariously high for the designer who just nabbed this year’s Rising Star—one Christian Cota. A Mexico City native with a pointillist eye for detail and a painterly way with color and drape, Cota is more than ready to rise to the Wu challenge. This season he’s getting a little help with the finishing touches from Lauren Santo Domingo, who is styling the Fall/Winter ’09 collection Cota presents this evening at the Metropolitan Pavilion. “I think you’ll see a new edge to Christian’s always impeccable uptown polish,” notes Santo Domingo. The edge she’s talking about is literal as well as figurative—in keeping with Cota’s geologic inspiration, which led him to fixate on minerals, crystals, and meteorites, the new clothes put a feminine spin on rugged angularity. Will the First Lady bite? Santo Domingo seems to think she should. “As a designer,” she says, “Christian’s talent is that he knows what a woman wants to wear.” Are you listening, Michelle?