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Touring around Cuenca in Ecuador for a day, the most striking thing besides the city’s natural beauty…

…is the fashion. Men and women alike sport some wonderfully superlative styles.

One person I spoke with explained that outward signs of wealth are a big deal. Having fancy house exteriors and lawns aren’t done here, so items like cars and clothes take on extra importance.

For me, this still doesn’t explain why Cuenca, in particular, seems so fashionable. Perhaps because it’s a very walkable city with a lot of youth and ex-pats (but not so much the hippie types), so people are out, about, and style-conscious.

Whatever the cause, it’s a pleasure to behold. So in homage to The Sartorialist, here are some of the standouts of Cuenca street fashion.

The biggest contrasts are between modern and traditional/indigenous:

I can only assume this boy is excited about his mom’s matching poncho:

Motorcyclists are impressively color-coordinated:

Of course the Panama hat, which is actually made most ably in Cuenca, is popular:

For the bovine crowd, chains are most definitely IN:

Modern business dress is alive and distinctive:


Slacks and loafers, even for delivering cola. Nice:

I saw a lot of collar shirts under sweaters, and not just for school uniforms:

Not sure if it’s a school uniform, but this sure is one chic kid:

The students were, of course, among the most adventurous…

…or label-conscious…

…or just comfortably dressed:

Slicked-back hair seemed like a thing. I think I like it:


It was nice to see a lot of suits that weren’t just blue and black:

I love this style. I dunno, maybe the plaid skirt, or the contrasting bright blue bag? It all works:

American labels thrive, too:

If you’re wondering what to wear to your street performance:

Lime green vest. Sweet:

If you’re going to rock a hip hoody, gotta make sure there’s nothing in your teeth:

Sometimes I wonder what Moby would look like in a Snuggie?

An nice take on the all-black look:

This one, too. You don’t see a lot of facial hair in Latin America. And check out those boots and multi-colored sneakers. Cute couple:

Actually, the guy in that photo is Christian, an up-and-coming electronica DJ, with his girlfriend of three years, Katy. His brand is llama.

His dad is a fabulous contemporary artist named Jaime Gustavo Lopez Moreno. Here we are in his main gallery, at 417 Luis Cordero (near the river). Tell them Andres sent you for 25% off.

2 COMMENTS
Aunt Susan
June 5, 2009
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So why did I have to go all the way through the entire fashion show to find out the Drew Travel look? There it was in the last entry: blue and white plaid carried off with a casual unpressed finish, and earth tone slacks that also suggest ease and travel comfort, both appearing in a photo shoot with a man who might be Grandpa Max’s long lost brother.

Lynn (www.mamasays.us)
June 27, 2009
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Dear travel blogger….we are waiting anxiously for your next blog post. Which leaves us wondering, “Where in the world is AKS?” Enjoy your travels.

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