Isabel Isaza

Isabel Isaza

Textile Designer and Art Educator

May 30, 2019


Isabel Isaza Patterns


Tell us more about some of your past projects?

For several years I worked as a freelance fabric designer for a leading print studio in New Mexico. During my time there I designed fabric prints for the apparel market and completed seasonal trend research. After I received my MA from the University of Toledo last year, I worked at the Toledo Museum of Art in art education, developing a new program for Middle School students.

What current projects are you working on?

For the last year, I have focused my attention on developing my design brand Isabel Isaza Patterns. My creative efforts surface on the fabric design, garments, and marketing campaign. My business offers unique women’s clothing manufactured with fabrics of my own creation.

What advantages does being in Northwest Ohio/Toledo offer your efforts?

Major fashion trends rarely make it to Toledo. Having no interference with what is “hot” in the fashion market, allows me to grow creatively and independently. With time, I have learned to appreciate the beauty and uniqueness of Toledo’s location.

Tell us about one of your greatest successes.

Finding my patterns on fabrics at random boutiques, always unexpected and magical.

Tell us who or what gives you inspiration?

Overlooked areas in nature, aerial landscapes, interesting textures, working with my hands.

Tell us about your background.

I am born and raised in Bogotá, Colombia. Arrived in Toledo with my family 17 years ago. Before that, I received my BA in Textile Design from the Universidad de Los Andes in Bogotá, later received a Diploma in Fashion Design from the Istituto dell’Abbligiamento Marangoni in Milan, Italy. Back in Colombia, I worked in fabric manufacturing designing fabric collections for the apparel market. For some time, I was an adjunct professor for the Textiles Department at my Alma Mater, teaching different design classes. After moving to the US, I began working as a freelance designer while raising my two kids. Currently, I am committed to growing my business and enjoying the empty nest stage of life in the company of my husband.

Do you have a motto or favorite quote you try to live by?

“Diligence is the mother of good luck”-Ben Franklin. Do the work, play the part, good fortune will come.

Favorite place for local culture?

Toledo Farmer’s Market

Toledo’s “best-kept secret” is . . .

It’s people! Kindness and generosity abound on both banks of the Maumee River.

My favorite place to chill locally is . . .

During the summer months, the terrace at The Heights on the top of the Renaissance Hotel has the best view over the Maumee River and Downtown Toledo.

My favorite natural space in the Toledo area is . . .

Wildwood Metropark, particularly in the fall.

When I’m not working hard, I can always be found at . . .

I spend much of my time at home. I enjoy working in my little studio and taking breaks in the yard, meeting friends for coffee.

If you could change anything about the current landscape for creative, progressive people . . .

I would encourage young people to travel, learn new languages and meet people from different cultures.

Any exciting collaborations (past or present) you would like to tell us about?

In the Art education side, I have been involved with the Arts Commission as a member of the YAAW Committee for the past three years. This involvement allows me to witness our local youth grow and experience art in fascinating ways. Alongside education, I will also start a collaboration with Sauder Village soon, in efforts to update their academic programs to the current Ohio Standards.

Name one person (living or deceased) who you would love to collaborate with.

Vera Newman, an amazing fabric artist whose work I have always admired and identify with.

Name a CD, book or website you can’t live without.

Images, people and great inspiration from Instagram.

3 words that best describe me or my work are . . .

Discipline, color, fabric

Give us 5 Desert Island Album picks.

Girados en Concierto, by Ana Torroja & Miguel Bosé
Love in the Times of Cholera Soundtrack by Shakira
Fonseca Agustin
Tutto Pavarotti
Cloud Nine by Kygo

My biggest vice is . . .


I’d like to see __________ in Toledo.

Train public transportation.

What’s the last dream you recall having?

I can never remember any!

The last lyric that moved me was . . .

“In my mind, in my head
This is where we all came from
The dreams we have, the love we share
This is what we’re waiting for” – Dynoro & Gigi D’Agostino

One movie character I identify with is . . .

Lisbeth Salander from The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

The best gift I’ve ever received was . . .

The many adventures I have had while traveling and living abroad.

My most inspiring moment was/is . . .

Visiting art exhibitions, traveling, looking up close at nature, random patterns and textures in urban spaces.

I want my last meal to be __

In the company of my loved ones.


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