Santiago Auzmendi (1940-2014) realized very early on that he was not going to find what he has looking for in his home town of Lazkao. He had a cause for which he wanted to give free reign to his rebellious side. He moved to Barcelona and there he met the famous Catalan tailor Joseph Camps, his master. He learnt quickly and kept working right until his last breath.
At the end of the 50s, he opened his first tailor shop in Lazkao. Even at that point, he embraced the latest trends in a daring way without any complexes. It was through him that many people discovered Lacoste polo tops with the crocodile logo, launched onto the market in 1933 by the tennis player René Lacoste.
In Lazkao he could not shake off the feeling of suffocation. However, nor could he muster the courage to take the step up to the capital. He opted to open an establishment in Hernani. His prêt-à-porter collections and his fame began to rise around the time that well-known people began to frequent the shop, such as Real Sociedad players.
In 1970 he achieved his dream. His company reached San Sebastián. Passers-by would stop at the shop window on Calle Bergara in order to admire the suits, real gems of textile craftsmanship. Auzmendi continued to grow and open up extensions. In 1985 he had a portfolio of 2500 clients and was making 1600 suits a year.
Valued and esteemed by the Prada fashion house in Milan, for his wisdom and personality, the “fashion surgeon” dedicated his life to assembling and disassembling garments, applying his ongoing studies and knowledge to the engineering of couture tailoring. He worked without using prior patterns, cutting and working directly on the fabric, as ideas rushed around his head.
He was a fashion genius who taught us to break moulds and cross boundaries.
He passed on. However, at Auzmendi you can still find the same spirit that took its founder to Barcelona so that his dream would no longer only be a dream.