DATE Saturday 13th November 2021 This evening celebrities, international royalty and British high society figures attended the launch of CACHUA, a new luxury and eco-sustainable fashion label by Fernando Montano, accomplished Colombian dancer and former soloist with the Royal Ballet. Taking on the world of fashion design Montano launched his debut collection with a captivating catwalk performance which saw models display innovative and exclusive mens and womenswear pieces inspired by nature and Colombian and Peruvian colours.

Taking place against the stunning backdrop of St John’s Church in Hyde Park London, guests included former Premier League footballer John Terry and his wife Toni Terry, legendary former Ballet dancer Marchioness of Londonderry, international supermodel Eunice Olumide MBE, socialite and model Lady Martha Sitwell, actress Rebecca Ferdinando and novelist Tyne O’Connell.

Bringing together the art forms of fashion design, performance and music the catwalk was opened with a musical introduction from internationally renowned pianist, Alexandra Dariescu, creator of The Nutcracker and I.

The unique catwalk show celebrates the bicentenaries of Colombia (2019) and Peru (2021) showcasing jewellery manufactured with craftsmen from Colombia and alpaca garments brought to life by talented Andean artists, all designed by Montano. For further information please visit Fernando Montano and CACHUA ‘From the Andes to the World’ Leading Colombian born artist and ballet dancer Fernando Montano spent more than 13 years performing with the Royal Ballet.

In November 2020 Montano was preparing for his final appearance at Covent Garden as a full time member of the company when he was injured only three days before. As the UK returned to a second COVID lockdown Montano took the opportunity to nurture new creative outlets and decided to pursue a lifelong ambition and develop his own brand of high fashion and jewellery. Teaming up with Leslie Palacios, a Peruvian sustainable fashion consultant who Montano had connected with while performing in Peru in 2018, the pair took Montano’s drawings and many online meetings later proudly brought CACHUA, a new high fashion and jewellery brand for men and women to life.

To give birth to Fernando’s designs, Leslie shared her vision as creative and directed the photo shooting of the first collection that was released in AMANO, one of the most antique Pre Columbian textile museums in Latin America, becoming the first one in the history of the museum to realize this fashion editorial that connects us with the textile origins and created from the Andes to the world. To complement this idea the Peruvian top model Molly Tuesta was invited to be part of it and finally the magic began to take form.

The mission behind CACHUA is to create innovative and exclusive fashion and accessories by bringing high-end refined craftsmanship. Passionate about bringing luxury fashion to the market in a sustainable way CACHUA creates fashion for modern requirements by reviving ancient traditions. The 21 piece mens and womenswear collection includes a bold collection of coats, jackets and dresses featuring asymmetric hemlines, cape style shoulder details, alpaca fur and tassel trims combined with a rich palette of warm and bright tones. The collection uses natural textiles such as alpaca with its exquisite traditional ‘Alpaqueras’ handwork from a small Andean community in Arequipa, Peru.

The CACHUA designs are complemented with natural pearl, gold and silver jewellery using only traditional artisanal mining methods from the indigenous community of Mompox, Colombia. 100% of the collection’s garments are made from Alpaca from the Peruvian Andes. Each piece is handmade by local communities in Arequipa Peru, using revived traditional, and sustainable Andean knitting techniques. The 34 piece complementary jewellery collection is devised and co-designed by Montano and Bogota based jeweller and designer Mario Reina featuring stunning gold and pearl designs. Cachua means ‘round dance’ in Quechua, the language of the Inca Civilisation that was set in what is now Peru and other South American countries. The dance dates from the Baroque period 1788-1790.

Montano says, “As I started to recover from my injury I was taking long walks around Hyde Park. I realised I was always instinctively moving in large circles and the concept of this collection comes from the concentric circles of Mother Earth. In 2020 we found ourselves walking in different circular scenarios in every city on the planet; the parks, our buildings and our homes were the only spaces where we were allowed to be due to worldwide pandemic lockdowns. We were all doing our own Cachua dance around the world.” Montano continues, “The colours, and lines of the collection are drawn from the beauty and biodiversity of Planet Earth, inspired by landscapes such as the famous seven-colour mountains of Peru and China. It is also influenced by the beauty of wildlife such as the black swan that some of us may have seen in London’s Hyde Park.”

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