Michael Cinco! One of Dubai’s most well established international designers has pushed the bar even further for Dubai-based designers and furthermore, helped strenghten Dubai’s presence on the map of Global Fashion!
He recently was invited for the second time to be a part of America’s Next Top Model, Cycle 17 and was the Key designer for the Grand Finale!
Michael is extremely well known in the region especially for his Wedding Dresses and haute couture! I got to speak to him about his experience as a fashion designer in Dubai as well as his experience with America’s Next Top Model!
Where are you from?
- I’m originally from the Philippines.
How long have you been a designer?
- 19 long and glorious years
Are you always based in Dubai?
- Yes, I love Dubai and it’s the place I call home
What do you love about Dubai?
- I love the lifestyle and the amazing opportunities. I’ve loved Dubai since the very moment I arrived here 14 years ago. It gave me an opportunity to be recognized in the international fashion world. I do realize that to the outside world it might seem a bit like materialistic and unreal, but if you live here for a while you start to see that the positives overshadow all the negatives by far.
What inspires you the most?
- I love traveling. Im always inspired to discover new cultures and history. I love classic movies and the Opera.
Have you studied or taken any courses and where?
- I studied Fine Arts in college then i took up fashion design in Slim’s Fashion School. I also took up special courses in fashion and pattern-making in Central Saint Martin’s in London.
If you could describe your taste in 3 words, what would they be?
- Impalpable…impalpable…and impalpable.
How was it working with America’s Next Top Model?
- The first time worked with ANTM was during the last Cycle 16. I did the eco-couture themed collection for a shoot in a landfill shot by Nigel Barker. I think Tyra Banks and the judges told me they were so impressed from the collection that they asked me to do the clothes for the motion editorials for the last remaining 4 finalists which was filmed in Greece. They asked me also to do the collection for the final runway which was so amazing.
How was it working with Tyra Banks and the team?
- They are one of the most professional people I’ve ever worked with. The crew was working so hard until the wee hours but I didn’t see anyone complaining. Tyra Banks is so down-to-earth and she was very appreciative of all the clothes I made for the shoot and final runway. All of the hard work really paid off. It was such a remarkable experience.
Who was your favorite to work with?
- I loved working with Tyra Banks when she directed the motion editorials. Working with Nigel Barker was fun and very inspiring especially during our landfill shoot during Cycle 16.
How was it working with the models to create a look for them?
- I met the girls to help them create their vision of their final runway look. They are the ones who gave me ideas for each individual design. It was so funny and crazy because I met the 6 remaining finalists in Greece to help them design their look and then I had to go back to Dubai to create the 6 dresses in 2 days! I had to put all my other production on hold for the 2 days. In less than 48 hours I then had to return to Greece for the shoot and final runway. It was a crazy mission and I’m happy it turned out so well.
How did you feel about the winner?
- Lisa was the fiercest amongst the finalists. I could see her passion for the competition. She really wanted to win. Although I was rooting for Angelea and Allison I’m still really happy for Lisa. She worked hard and I think she deserved it.
Can you comment on why they disqualified Angelea Preston from the competition?
- I was actually shocked to see Angelea in person. She looks completely different than she does on TV. She is so beautiful with green eyes and extremely beautiful bone structure. I’m closer to Angelea than the rest of the girls. I personally can’t comment on the situation but I’ve read on a few sites that after our taping in Greece which happened last June, Angelea posted something on Facebook and Twitter about the show. We signed a confidentiality agreement that we are not allowed to divulge anything from the show. I think the producers found out that’s why she was disqualified. The team from ANTM called me to send back their final runway gowns to LA so they could reshoot the judging.
What other projects have you worked on in the past?
- I just had a gala show in Manila for charity called The Red Cross Gala. I won an award as Breakthrough Designer in WGSN Global Fashion Awards. I was honored.
Which collection or piece are you most proud of or love the most?
- I love the dress that I made for the Swarovski show Glamour in the City. It was so intricate with origami details. It was inspired by the Harajuku girls and the skirt of the dress could be opened and flipped to the back and transform into a glamourous Japanese female warrior look with intricate detailing on sleeves and skirt. It’s one of my favourite couture master pieces. I worked day and night on it.
Tell us more about your designs and the services you offer?
- My design aesthetics is haute couture specializing in evening dresses and wedding gowns. At the moment it’s the wedding season here in the UAE. My workshop is extremely busy finishing the orders for my clients.
Who’s your role model?
- John Galliano
Where do you see yourself in the next year? 5 years?
- I want my Michael Cinco brand to be global in the next 5 years.
What’s your dream piece or collection?
- To create the most expensive wedding dress in the world embellished with real diamonds. I wish to have a show in Paris Fashion Week.
Who would you love to collaborate with or design for?
- I would love to design for Angelina Jolie and Cate Blanchett for one of their red carpet events. I would also love to collaborate with H&M, who knows –Michael Cinco for H&M, I WISH!
How can people contact or order from you for exclusive designs?
- They can always visit my atelier by appointment only.
Where is your line available?
- I don’t carry my designs in any other boutique. I only do made-to-order couture dresses.
Do you sell online anywhere?
- There is a website called yebab.com. Clients can order evening gowns and wedding dresses on that site. I also have a website http://www.michaelcinco.com.
What is your best fashion advise?
- To be yourself and wear something that suits your personality.
In your opinion, what is the biggest fashion no-no?
- When people try to imitate style and trends that they see in magazines, TV, online, etc just because it’s trendy. Fashion is a form of art and it needs to come from within. I also thinks it’s a no-no when women wear dresses that are 4 sizes smaller than they should or tacky clothes.
Other than fashion what are your hobbies?
- I love photography and the Opera
What else do you have left to accomplish?
- I’m still looking for the right love, love is beautiful and priceless and everyone is more beautiful when they find it.
What’s your favorite quote or motto?
-” Dream great dreams. Don’t set any limitations to yourself. Believe that anything in this world is possible. Believe in yourself. You can make all your IMPALPABLE DREAMS come true.”
To Contact Michael Cinco’s Atelier:
Call: +971 4 332 8488
Watch Michael Cinco on America’s Next Top Model: