Peru: When Tradition Meets Fashion

When designers draw inspiration from the Peruvian folk style, the result is just vibrant, exotic and colorful.

Text: Sophia Karagianni

Peru has a long and rich history and tradition. The culture in Peru is a fusion of different life styles, as diverse traditions and customs co-exist. There is no doubt that art is an essential activity for the inhabitants and represents the Peruvian identity. Beautiful locations, colorful traditional costumes, layers of prints, textures and hues, handmade and embellished textiles with an ornamental aesthetic and luxury alpaca texture combine the beauty of Peruvian tradition.

  Peruvian fabrics and textures

 Mario Testino’s Alta Moda Exhibition 4



This beautiful culture has the power to influence designers, photographers and stylists. Inspired by the traditional and festival Peruvian costumes, designers create pieces that are rich in Peruvian history.  Handwoven shoulder cloth fasten at the front with decorated pins, colourful skirts in graduated layer effect, ponchos, knit hats of different colors or geometric designs are some of the traditional costumes of Peru that influence several designers’ collections. Photographers explore the beauty of Peruvian folk with photo shootings  in exotic locations and mountains, while stylists give an extra touch to a concept, following the norms of different Peruvian regions.


   The Vogue Korea ”La Senorita Bello”

Editorial in Vogue UK 2010


Mario Testino and Kate Moss for Vogue Paris 2013


Barbara Bui, Dolce & Gabbana, Raph Lauren, Tod’s used saturated colours, homespun textured woolens and crafty geometric patterns for their Summer 2013 collections.

   Barbara Bui S/S 2013

Tod’s shoes and Dolce Gabbana earings


Ralph Lauren S/S 2013

Dolce & Gabbana S/S 2013

Miss Mochila Bag

Barbara Bui S/S 2013


One of the most important representatives of Peruvian culture is Mario Testino. The legendary photographer has gone back to his roots several times and has taken inspiration from the vibrant costumes and artisan craftwork for his work. Testino desires to promote the arts in his birthplace Peru with several actions: Editorials, exhibitions, a not-for-profit cultural foundation, the MATE Association and now a capsule collection. He has produced a collection of bags, kaftans and jewelry, available exclusively at A percentage of sales will be donated to the photographer’s Lima-based charity, MATE. The collection is part of Testino’s new exhibition, Alta Moda, which opened on April 18th at Avenido Pedro de Osma in the photographer’s hometown of Lima, Peru.

Testino’s Capsule Collection