Guatemalan Fashion Designer Isn’t Letting Down Syndrome Cripple Her Dreams

Viva

Young fashion designer Isabella Springmühl is living proof that despite any obstacle, you can make your dreams come true. The 19-year-old from Guatemala has Down Syndrome, but she didn’t let that get in the way of her passion to make stylish garb.

In a recent interview she did with Univision’s Despierta America, she said she got turned down from two schools. “They just told me no,” she said. Still, she kept going; following in the footsteps of her maternal grandmother, who is also a fashion designer as well—since an early age she started making clothes for her dolls .

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Now, Springmühl has a penchant for showcasing the colorful array of indigenous patterns that Guatemala’s rich culture has to offer. She’s worked with Guatemalan artisans, and has constructed intricate embroidered designs. She’s even garnered much deserved attention from prominent fashion institutions and runways. Back in January of 2016, she broke records becoming the first designer with Down Syndrome to showcase her collection at London Fashion Week. Last year, she showcased her work at the Museo Ixchel, Guate where her pieces sold out. And now on October, she will be headed to Rome to show her designs.

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Despite her ardor for making mainstream high fashion threads, she also has another agenda at hand. She aims to make clothes specifically for those who also have Down Syndrome, due to how hard it is to find comfortable fitting clothes for them.

“It’s hard for us to find clothes,” she said. “We have short necks, short torsos.”  Therefore, she created Down to Xjabelle, an extension of her grandmother’s line, Xjabelle.

Check out the full news segment on Despierta America below.