April has hit. And although FIESTA officially begins on the 18th, San Antonians know that starting the 1st, the spirit and  festivities have already launched. If you are unfamiliar with FIESTA, it is a nonprofit, volunteer, self-supporting organization that started in 1891 as a one-parade event honoring the memory of the heroes of the Alamo and the Battle of San Jacinto. That historic commemoration still takes place, but for more than a century, FIESTA has grown into a celebration of San Antonio’s rich and diverse cultures. It is a true time to celebrate being a San Antonian and the many ways we identify ourselves as a San Antonian. FIESTA has evolved into one of this nation’s most unique and premier festivals with an economic impact of more than $340 million for the Alamo City. Funds raised by official FIESTA events provide services to San Antonio citizens and numerous nonprofits throughout the year and on the fashion forefront – it is one of the biggest fashion events of the San Antonio calendar!

Photo Sourced at @FIESTASA

You see, FEISTA would be nothing without the extremely colorful, exuberant and show stopping fashion that fills the city this time of year. From the couture gowns and embellished uniforms of Fiesta royalty to the flamboyant spirit of veteran party goers alike, fashion itself, is one of the single most important aspects of this celebration and if you are truly on point for the season, bigger, louder and extreme are staple levels to strive for.

Photo Sourced at @FIESTASA
Photo Sourced at @FIESTASA

We sat down with the King of Fiesta Fashion, which we truly believe to be, Michael Quintanilla, former fashion journalist for the LA Times and San Antonio Express News. With over 15 years of showstopping and humorous Fiesta Fashion, he shares his best kept secrets about his collection, then invites you to see his peices at the The Institute of Texan Cultures, “Fiesta Passion, Fiesta Fashion” exhibit.

Sourced at UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures

Together, with Graciela Carrillo, the Institute partners with these Fiesta Fashion icons to bring the public a glimpse into the unique fashion side of San Antonio’s signature event and share the craftsmanship and artistry that has become ubiquitous with the FIESTA San Antonio celebration.

Michael’s Butterfly Hat

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Items on display at“Fiesta Passion, Fiesta Fashion”

The “Fiesta Passion, Fiesta Fashion,” opening reception is Friday, April 5, 6 – 8 p.m. and will run until May 5th. The exhibit will showcase pieces from the artist’s personal Fiesta Fashion archives to include, hats, dresses, embellished pieces, over the top jackets and so much more.

Michael’s hand rhinestoned Fiesta shoes

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“Fiesta is such a fun time of year,” said ITC executive director Angelica Docog. “San Antonians express a joy and love through their clothing, with vibrant colors and over-the-top accessories from head to foot. With two of our city’s finest minds in fashion curating this exhibit with items from their own personal collections, we’re looking forward to something exceptional at the institute this Fiesta season.”

From Michael Quintanilla’s famous butterfly outfit

To see even more of Michael’s artistic creations, check out our interview with him below. Get ready for the most extreme interactive Fiesta hats you’ve ever seen, overly embellished suits, humorous design for you and your pet and more. Whether you are from San Antonio, or happened to stumble upon this during your daily online surfing, you will not want to miss this behind the scenes episode with the master. Enjoy yourself and catch a sneak peek into what it means to be a San Antonian during FIESTA time.

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Style Lush Phone Cam catching the Confetti Hat in action (just in time).

Oh, and hey, if you need tips, not to worry, Michael shares his Fiesta Fashion secrets so that you can be a Fiesta fashion master in a snap. Have fun everyone and VIVA FIESTA!

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Burgundy Woods

Burgundy Woods has a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Music/Music Industries from the University of the Incarnate Word and a Design & Trend Forecasting degree from The Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (FIDM) in Los Angeles. She began her career in Hollywood, California, where she worked for major record labels such as Virgin Records, Interscope Records, EMI Music and Capitol Records. Later after attaining her fashion degree, she was discovered by MySpace, Inc. and was immediately hired to be their Fashion Curator starring and producing her show THE B-SPOT Fashion & Trends on their Fashion & Shopping channel. During this time, online media was in its infancy. She and her colleagues contributed to the invention and molding of the online fashion media industry. Many of the stylized ideas and tools that were launched through these platforms are still used to this day as industry standards for online fashion media. Later, with her extensive experience in developing online fashion media, she continued the show independently and has successfully rebranded THE B-SPOT into Style Lush TV online fashion network. Now, with over eight professional years in online fashion media and trend forecasting, she continues to pioneer, maneuver and develop her industry. She is currently the Senior Digital Fashion Editor, On Camera Fashion Personality and Senior Video Producer for Style Lush TV. She is also the President of the Texas Fashion Industry Initiative. The states official non-profit for the positive growth of the Texas Fashion Industry