Did you know Colombia’s fashion capital, Medellín, is known to some as “The Milan of Latin America”? Colombia’s Fashion Week — called Colombiamoda — is held in Medellín every year.
Here, learn about Colombia’s Fashion Week from a Brit. What seems to most shock foreign fashion reporters is the culture of “narco-beauty” — basically, big fake boobs and bums, paid for by drug traffickers, a trend that has permeated most of Medellín.
With the free trade agreement now in effect between Colombia and the U.S., expect to see more of Colombia’s fine denim, lingerie and textiles. According to Fashionista.com, U.S. exports of fibers, textiles, and apparel to Colombia totaled $266 million in 2011. In the same year, U.S. imports of Colombian textiles and apparel totaled $238.7 million. Colombia’s apparel manufacturing sector accounts for around 2% of the nation’s G.D.P.
Brands like Victoria’s Secret, Tommy Hilfiger, and Levi’s already do some manufacturing in Colombia. Chinese factories turn down smaller orders, and Colombia can fill those smaller runs with faster lead times. Further, with ports on both the Caribbean and the Pacific, Colombia can expedite shipments.