Photo provided by PROTOTYPE
Photo provided by PROTOTYPE

DESIGNER

Designer Profile: Sabrina Ballesteros of Ballesteros Designs

We’ve excited to annouce, we’re a media partner for Prototype, an all-inclusive art and fashion show that is happening this February. Here, we’re sharing designers that will be showcasing their collections at the event. Prototype’s art and fashion show will take place at the new $15 million cultural hub, The Niagara Falls Exchange, happening from 6-10 p.m. on Saturday, February 24th, 2024. Funded in part by the city of Niagara Falls, the goal of the event is to reshape and rebrand culture in the Niagara region—showcasing a new wave of talent and energy in the city that transcends orthodox modes of approaching art, thinking and being. In short, Prototype is more akin to a manifesto with this as its thesis: Niagara is a cultural force to be reckoned with. Visit their website to purchase tickets to the event.

Meet Sabrina Ballesteros of Ballesteros Designs

Instagram: @ballesteros_designs

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I am 25 years old and was born in Toronto, Canada. My father is Filipino and my mother Pakistani. From a young age I was interested in clothes and would always sketch outfits that I wished existed. I have studied at Toronto Metropolitan University and at the Amsterdam Fashion Institute, the cumulation of my studies shaped me into a designer that values quality craftsmanship and innovative design that is unique but still wearable. When I’m not designing clothes I’m either in a dance studio or glued to a good book.

What inspires you?

 Stories, photography, dance, human experiences and emotions.
Photo provided by PROTOTYPE

Photo provided by PROTOTYPE

Tell us the story behind your brand/art.

I feel like I’ve been developing my brand my whole life since I always knew I wanted to design clothes. However, I don’t think I really had a grasp on what I wanted my brand to be / feel like until I finished my exchange period at Amsterdam Fashion Institute. My exchange experience was pivotal and it forced me to change the way I saw design. It really pushed the boundaries of where and how one can find and develop a concept, and to explore unfamiliar techniques to bring designs to fruition. The experience also made me reflect on my values and question myself on why I adorn the clothes that I do, how they make me feel, why I enjoy this feeling, and from there I started to craft my brand Ballesteros. When I started working with leather I knew this would be my medium of choice. I favour its durability, appearance and I think it’s a sexy material that  produces such strong silhouettes. In general, these are qualities I want to be present in my brand both aesthetically and conceptually. I chose my last name Ballesteros as my brand name as I wanted it to be a reflection of me and my likes and interests, so it felt it fitting.  I feel like the story of Ballesteros is still being written and that this is just the beginning for me, so I’m excited to continue down this journey. Stories, photography, dance, human experiences and emotions.

What’s one piece of advice you would give someone starting out in your field?

Do it because you want to see it happen, not because someone else is telling you you should want it.
Photo provided by PROTOTYPE

Photo provided by PROTOTYPE

What does participating in PROTOTYPE mean to you?

It is such an honour to be a part of this show, and am grateful that it is what’s kicking off my 2024. This is my first runway show and I could not be more excited and happy to be showing amongst such a talented cohort of artists and creatives. It feels like a lot of young creatives are lifting one another up right now and I think a sense of community is being reinforced and I love it. I think in our world where it’s hard to see yourself in, it’s nice to know there’s a community that welcomes the unconventional.

What does 2024 hold for you?

A lot of hard work, focus and dedication.

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