Isabella Vilarroel: Future Fashion Icon


Noa Belehssen

Senior Isa Vilarroel obtains a fashion internship with Maria D’Ocon to get a glimpse of the bridal gown industry.

As some juniors and seniors approach college, they begin to reflect on which interests will lead their career in the future. Senior Isabella Vilarroel has her eyes set on the path of fashion and performing arts. After realizing she wanted to put her creativity to use, Vilarroel decided to use her extra time during quarantine as an advantage to improve her skills and is now an intern for Maria D’Ocon, a fashion designer specialized in bridal gowns and who started her own business, Atelier D’Ocon, in Miami.

This is a dress that Vilarroel created as a project at the end of an internship she had during her sophomore year. The theme was self-expression. (Isabella Villaroel)

Since before she can recall, Vilarroel had an interest in arts. Whether it came to performing arts, cooking or fashion, she was always intrigued by it. Although she attended her first ever sewing class in fifth grade, she mainly taught herself what she knew before enrolling in Ms. Monzon’s class her sophomore year. Before being completely immersed in this class, her attention was initially drawn towards teaching; she believed she would become an elementary school teacher. After watching documentaries and videos in which people shared their experience about attending fashion schools and working in the fashion industry overall, she completely changed her mind and is now inspired and determined to pursue a career in fashion.

“I love the creative aspect of it. My favorite part is making and designing and working on producing things right. Since the internship is with a small business, I get to see the business side of it, the marketing side of it and the creative side,” senior Isabella Vilarroel said.

Vilarroel made this skirt out of a houndstooth fabric. She can spend 5 to 8 hours on her projects. (Isabella Villaroel)

After being able to meet Maria D’Ocon through her sister, she was offered a job and the internship she currently holds at her boutique. This opportunity was a dream come true and she could not have been more excited for it. While being there, she benefits from tips and guidance given by D’Ocon herself. She has also been given the opportunity to teach young girls from the ages five through twelve how to sew alongside D’Ocon. Vilarroel also enjoys making some of her own clothing, sometimes finding things she likes online and chooses to make it herself instead of purchasing it.

This is a top which Vilarroel made out of metallic denim. This is one of her favorite pieces. (Isabella Villaroel)

“She wants to be a wedding dress designer, which is why the internship that she has is the perfect fit for her. I think she is going to do great things because she loves it so much,” fashion teacher Ms.Monzon said.

After dedicating her mind to fashion, Vilarroel has been putting in a lot of time and effort to improve her skills and plans on continuing to do so for the rest of her life. She also owns a social media account where she exhibits some of her custom creations: on instagram. She spends her free time creating special pieces for her friends who have been more than supportive during the beginning of her fashion journey. As a senior, she has also been focusing on college applications and hopes to attend the Miami Fashion Institute at Miami Dade College once she graduates.