Juan Carlos Obando stood on one leg and proffered his free foot. “Look at my shoes!” he said, showing the blue detailing on his leather wingtips. “He designed them,” he added, pointing to shoe designer George Esquivel, who in turn held up his tie. “And he designed my tie. Check this out. It’s a scarf,” he said. Indeed, it was a long scarf knotted to look like a tie. “I don’t like normal ties,” he went on. “So I was like, can you make me a tie that’s not a tie? And now he makes a whole collection of scarf ties.”
Both L.A.-based designers were celebrating their respective inductions into the CFDA this year, which is cute because they’re best friends and have collaborated for two seasons and counting. Their first joint project was a small collection of leather sleeves, and last season they did women’s shoes, which Obando showed in his women’s ready-to-wear show in September. And the pair has much bigger plans in store: “We decided today to do a collection of men’s and women’s clothing, shoes, and accessories,” announced Obando excitedly. Isn’t that a big leap? “When you see it, you’ll be like, 'Oh, it makes sense,'” he said. “It’ll be very concise and tight.” Apparently the two had laid the groundwork for their plans just a few hours earlier while having lunch together. “We’re shooting for Resort 2012,” said Esquivel. “And no, we can’t tell you anything more because we have no idea yet."