Being a Denver native can be challenging. With all of the rapid redevelopment, you never know what will be left of old Denver when you return to town. Marcus Correa grew up in north Denver and made his mark on the local fashion scene as the general manager and buyer for Family Affair, a menswear boutique and barber shop. When that shop closed, Correa took the opportunity to study fashion marketing at Parsons School of Design in New York City, where he now works. When we recently spotted Correa in Curtis Park, we chatted with him about fashion, style and making north Denver proud.
Westword: Who or what inspires your style?
Marcus Correa: I’m inspired by traditional Chicano fashion as well as Japanese avant-garde style. As different as they may sound, I find that there are a lot of commonalities between them. I also look to what’s happening now in streetwear, and I am really intrigued by Prayers and the whole cholo-goth movement going on. My favorite thing is to mix street-wear with high-end looks, since I never feel completely street or high-end.
What is your profession?
I am a model and marketer for a brand called Willy Chavarria in SoHo, and I am also pursuing a couple other jobs right now, as I just graduated.
What is your favorite accessory?
I love my grill. I just have two teeth, so I find them to be as subtle as gold teeth can be, but I love having them in...especially when I dress up.
What is your favorite color?
Black, hands down. I like dark colors, and you can’t get any darker than that.
What is your style mantra?
I think it really depends on the day, but most of the time I just want to be able to be comfortable and express how I’m feeling and who I am. And if I do that, I think my outfit is a success.
Where do you shop?
I wish I could say Dover Street or Chrome Hearts or somewhere cool, but the truth is most of my stuff I find at thrift stores or at Beacon's Closet. It’s kind of the reality of being a poor student in New York. I also use Grailed, because I like being able to find a specific piece and get it for the low. I love New York, because there are so many options and so many ways to get creative with what you wear.
How would you describe your style in three words?
Dark, oversized, Chicano.
What is your jam of the moment?
"Out There," by Project Pat, has kind of been my walk-the-streets anthem of late, but pretty much any old Three 6 Mafia, and Project Pat is what’s in my headphones right now and always.
What is your favorite film?
I love Training Day; it melds action and acting and Denzel has some of the most memorable scenes of his career in it. Also, it’s one of the only gang movies where every demographic of people is represented: kind of a weird take on inclusivity.
What would you like to do in the fashion industry?
My ideal goal is to start my own label and/or own my own retail store.
Who are some of your favorite designers and brands?
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Rei Kawakubo and Comme Des Garcons is always going to be my number one, just for everything CDG has done for the world of fashion, but Born X Raised, Willy Chavarria, Wacko Maria, Raf Simons, Dries Van Noten and Ben Davis Japan are all labels that I feel do great things on their own terms. I also love Teen Angel's merch; even though it’s not a brand, per se, they influence Mexican-American fashion possibly more than anyone else.
Is there anything else you'd like to add?
I’m just hoping to make north Denver proud.
Just as Correa draws from his past to explore his future, never be afraid to make your home town proud, Denver.