Three essentials for fashion designer Willy Chavarria are blazers, affirmations, and Don Julio.

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How Willy Chavarria Won the 2023 American Menswear Designer of the Year  Trophy | Hypebeast

This holiday season is filled with joy for Willy Chavarria.

The designer, who has collaborated with everyone from Madonna to Travis Scott to Madonna and Sam Smith, is still in a state of shock following his victory in November’s CFDA Award for menswear design—one of the most prestigious titles in American fashion.

Chavarria claims, “It was really just a time to celebrate.” It was an occasion to honor the work that both my team and I had completed. Everyone who has ever collaborated with me or shared in the vision has contributed to our company and the narrative that our brand tells.”

Bringing Latinidad to the runways of New York Fashion Week and beyond, Chavarria, through his namesake brand, infuses his designs with his Mexican American heritage and California sensibilities, resulting in mixes of exaggerated suiting and streetwear, feminine flourishes within masculine silhouettes, luxury, and layman’s ensembles.

These are his must-have festive attire and items:

The inspiration behind Willy Chavarria

According to Chavarria, his “own culture has very much inspired me” in the development of his clothing line.

“It has just come naturally to me to incorporate Mexican and Mexican American cultural elements into my design philosophy and to include the people who have inspired me, particularly the Mexican American community, in my work. And many Latin Americans collaborate on the projects with my team and my larger creative family.

Willy Chavarria attends the 2023 CFDA Fashion Awards at the American Museum of Natural History on Nov. 6, 2023, in New York City.

“It has always been my goal to highlight the variety of aspects that make beauty possible, both when I first launched my brand and now. I had never seen the kind of people I cast for editorials, for just modeling and branding, or that I use for runway work before. Therefore, it’s crucial in my opinion that Latinos be represented in the public eye in a stunning and sophisticated manner.”

Willy Chavarria’s Don Julio drink to celebrate — and his spirited go-to holiday gift

As part of Tequila Don Julio’s global “Por Amor” campaign, Chavarria keeps his go-to beverage straightforward but flavorful.

About the premium tequila, “I love (Don Julio) 1942 on the rocks, that’s my jam,” he remarks. It’s like the ideal combination for all of these incredible things that have been going on. We had the CFDA Awards, the Latin American Fashion Awards, and my runway show, which was a remarkable turning point in the brand’s history. I’ve been able to share all of these amazing milestones with Don Julio.

Willy Chavarria attends Carlos Eric Lopez’s third annual Día de Muertos Celebration at Hollywood Forever on Nov. 1, 2023, in Hollywood, California.

An engraved bottle of Don Julio 1942 Tequila is another suggestion from the designer for the ideal personalized present. “It’s in a beautiful box and then it has their name on it,” he states with a wink. “I do (gift) a lot of Willy Chavarria because I get a discount there and the clothes are really good.”

The quintessential fashion piece Willy Chavarria needs in his closet

“A huge fan of the blazer or the sport jacket,” according to Chavarria.

That’s also one of my favorite designs to create. I think it can give you a strong sense of self-worth in any circumstance. However, it can also simply lend an air of elegance to any ensemble. Therefore, I’ll throw on a fantastic sport jacket with sweatpants and loafers, or I’ll wear a suit or ragged jeans with 3- or 4-inch high heeled boots. For me, the sport jacket is the most recognizable item. It’s simply that one perfect little element that you can add to finish the look.”

Fashion designer Willy Chavarria says his partnership with Tequila Don Julio has helped him celebrate "incredible milestones."

Which celebrity would Willy Chavarria like to dress?

Despite dressing celebrities (and even having them walk his runway), one celebrity remains on his wish list: “I feel like I need to dress Usher.”

“I think he would look amazing in Willy Chavarria for some reason,” the designer exclaims, sounding enthusiastic about the possibility of working with Usher on the Super Bowl halftime show performance rollout. “I’ll see to it that that occurs. That is a wise choice.

The Essentials: These are Usher’s must-haves as he lights up the Las Vegas strip.

A model walks the runway at the Willy Chavarria fashion show during New York Fashion Week at the Woolworth Building on Sept. 13, 2023, in New York City.

Willy Chavarria’s daily self-care process and bedtime mantra

Positive affirmations and envisioning your ideal life to help you grow into it are two things that I really believe in. I therefore pray a lot before I go to bed, but I also constantly think about my ideal self. Thus, it resembles a mantra. It sort of clears my mind of everything before I go to sleep. And just kind of visualize things, like where I want to live, how I want to be, what I want to wear, and all that kind of stuff.

Tequila Don Julio’s partner Willy Chavarria shares his wardrobe essentials.
“And the first thing I do when I wake up is express gratitude. I simply stop myself and give thanks for everything before I begin to worry about anything or think about the day. And I’m really propelled through the day by both of those things.”

Usher attends the 2023 Met Gala celebrating "Karl Lagerfeld: A Line Of Beauty" at The Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 1, 2023, in New York City.

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