When people see the works of designer Guillermo Pharis, dreams appear to have come true. Pharis is a legendary wedding dress designer who owns a store in downtown Denver and his work is known to showcase quality designs like no other. He is also making his Denver Fashion Week debut during couture night.
Get your Denver Fashion Week tickets for Couture here
The path to success has been hard for Pharis, but nothing has stopped him from reaching greatness.
Pharis was born and raised in Honduras to a single mother and her two sisters. When he was nine years old, he began designing gowns — a passion that would remain within him for many years to come. He knew from a young age that he wanted to become a wedding dress designer.
“I remember telling my classmates in middle school “one day I will be a famous wedding dress designer.’” A young man with big dreams indeed,” Pharis said.
Thinking back, Pharis chose to design wedding dresses before he even fully understood the significance of the dress. He wanted to make people feel emotional and sentimental. Designing dresses combines his love for sustainability and respectability. He reflects on wedding gowns being a forever choice and finds beauty in that. Pharis also believes that designing gowns fulfills a childhood dream of his.
He loves working alongside a specific buyer during such a special time in their lives and believes that he wouldn’t give that up for anything.
Pharis debuted his designs 13 years ago during Fashion Week Honduras.
When looking back at the collection, Pharis recalls how mystical it was. During this show, his model walked down the runway in a wedding dress with a sword. Then, during his early 20’s the designer made the decision to hone his skills.
He moved to New York City where he would attend the Fashion Institute of Technology, and emerged in culture in education. The rest is history.
During the fall 2023 season, Pharis will display his work at Denver Fashion Week. He aims to immerse the audience in a world of emotions by fusing together evening and bridal wear, color and elegance. The dresses will exhibit beautiful, unique silhouettes with a glamorous touch. Through displaying beautiful pieces, having correct lighting and playing the right music — Pharis wants to create a lasting impression on the audience.
Pharis stated he wanted to become more involved in the Denver Fashion community and Denver Fashion is the perfect opportunity to do so.
“It is important for me to contribute and celebrate fashion with the people of Denver,” Pharis said.
He’s looking forward to seeing the turnout of the event and believes that Denver Fashion Week can help prove how much the Denver fashion scene is growing.
To Pharis, being successful means ensuring that he feels joy when designing and ensuring that his mental and physical health remains in a positive space.
“Where I can grow without sacrificing my well-being, where I can find balance between my creativity, my physical/mental health and still be able to enjoy the results,” Pharis said. He also stated that a moment that marked a different type of success for him was selling his designs across many cities within Asia.
Being an introvert when Pharis was younger has taught him to develop skills as an observer and listener — this has helped him run his own business today.
“[I was] very introverted and I definitely think that taught me to be a good observer and listener, which is part of my personality and would give me some advantage to learn and run my own design business,” Pharis said.
Taking pride in one’s work is incredibly important as a designer. For Pharis, he’s most proud of his sustainable design process. He takes pride in constructing gowns with globally high end quality. His work has also been sold around the world — from Hong Kong to Denver to New York and London.
The clean lines and pure elegance of his work were created through years of carefully learning, practicing and performing techniques of pure skill.
From his first design, a white ball gown with a strapless corset and embroidery, to his favorite design, the ‘Thea’ gown,” Guillermo Pharis has accomplished a lot within his career.
Pharis’s last piece of advice for younger designers?
He tells designers that fashion design is a beautiful career, however, be ready to have more downs than ups. “But that will make you strong,” He said. “I came to the United States very young full of dreams looking to fulfill a dream, in my own way, on my own terms with all challenges you can imagine eventually touched that dream. If this is your real dream then get up and do something valuable for it.”
See Pharis take the runway at Denver Fashion Week on Nov. 18 during Couture and purchase tickets here