5 Texas Latinas You Need To Know, 2019

00 Candice Trevino IMG 2271 e1556657941280

In celebration of Cinco de Mayo 2019, we are shining the spotlight of five Latina women who are making things happen in the Lone Star State.

Elena Flores, Owner of “Sew Bonita,” Corpus Christi

What began as a creative outlet in 2014 has turned into a popular online and pop-up shop, Sew Bonita, where Elena Flores, creates t-shirts, accessories and clothing incorporating the colors, designs and textiles popular with Latinas.

“Growing up on the border is part of my life and Sew Bonita is a reflection of that. I think people, predominantly women, can relate to things I make, designs I create and find similarities in my life experiences,” said Flores.

In addition to the products Flores creates, she is known for her unapologetic humor and her way of empowering women. Check out Flores’ Instagram page for your daily dose of beauty and chisme.

“Aside from making beautiful things, I love the hustle. It keeps me going and I love having opportunities present themselves as Sew Bonita continues to grow,” says Elena Flores, owner of the popular Corpus Christi-based online store and pop-up shop. Courtesy photo

Taco Style: Extra guac or extra cheese? Both!

Abril Galindo, Executive Sous Chef, Four Seasons Hotel, Austin

She set out to make a career in the hospitality industry, but after taking cooking classes for her degree in college, Abril Galindo was hooked and became a chef. “When I discovered that I had the power to make food taste however I wanted, that’s when I knew where I was going, “said Galindo.

Galindo, who is originally from Guadalajara, Mexico, received a nomination for “Rising Star Chef of the Year” in the 2019 CultureMap Tastemaker Awards in Austin and has been cooking with the Four Seasons Hotel Austin since 2012. For her, cooking is not only about taste, but also about showcasing her roots.

“Latin food, and specifically Mexican food, has so much to give. Tacos are just the cover page of Mexican food but to get to truly know it, you need to read the full book. Every Latino country, state and region and even the small neighborhoods – has different dishes and ingredients that the majority of the American population aren’t aware of,” says Four Seasons Hotel Austin Executive Sous Chef Abril Galindo. Courtesy photo

Dessert Style: Churros or Flan? Flan in summer and churros in winter.

Alejandra Graf, CEO and Creator of “Piloncillo & Vainilla,” Houston

 Mexico City native turned Houston gal Alejandra Graf has loved vegetarian food as long as she can remember. She began her blog Piloncillo & Vainilla (Brown Sugar & Vanilla) about five years ago at the suggestion of her husband. “I spent so much time on the phone giving recipes and advice on a plant-based diet to my friends, that he said enough, start a blog. I had no idea what a blog was, but loved the concept of having everything in one place,” said Graf.

Graf’s love for her plant-based lifestyle has turned into not only a blog, but two e-books and a popular Instagram page. Graf’s Instagram feed and website are not only a feast for the eyes, but a wealth of information in both English and Spanish.

“I love having beautiful photos and it is important to me to have everything in English and Spanish, so that I can reach a larger audience. I have a major in fine arts, so that gave me the base for photography,” says Houston’s Alejandra Graf, CEO of Piloncillo & Vainilla. “I also have a professional plant-based cooking certification, so my knowledge of food has helped a lot with my photos, I think they go hand-in-hand.” Courtesy photo

Tortilla Style: Corn or Flour? Corn 100%

Aideé Granados, Founder & CEO of Rosa es ROJO, Inc., Dallas

Aideé Granados, a six-year cancer survivor, is not only inspiring, but determined to create a healthier lifestyle for Latinas in her community. Granados created Rosa es Rojo (Pink is Red), a nonprofit organization to educate Latinas about wellness and cancer prevention. “Rosa Es Rojo is making wellness and cancer prevention accessible for Latinas, by training them on the topics of nutrition, physical activity, emotional health and positive thinking,” said Granados.

A certified wellness coach who holds a master’s degree in Education, Granados focuses on the Latina community because they are at a higher risk than many other populations. “In less than three years, Latinos in Texas will be the largest population group, and it is one of the largest living in poverty. That’s why my community finds cancer late–when it is more extensive, and treatment is costly and less successful,” said Granados.

“Wellness education is KEY for cancer prevention and also to avoid other chronic diseases. Wellness education is KEY for a more joyful and productive life. Don’t wait to have a diagnosis to start making changes in your lifestyle. Start now. Start today. You can create a ripple effect!” says Aideé Granados, founder of Dallas-based nonprofit “Rosa es ROJO.” Courtesy photo

Texas Style: Cowboy boots or Cowboy hat? Boots! I love boots!!!!

Candice Treviño, Body Positive Lifestyle Blogger & Creator of “Smiles and Pearlss,” San Antonio

Looking for a fun, colorful addition to your Instagram feed? Look no further than Candace Treviño of Smiles and Pearlss. Originally from Dallas, this San Antonio girl has made transforming others to feel confident in themselves her goal. “I want to inspire others to live a positive lifestyle, to learn to love themselves and their gifts enough to share them with the world,” said Treviño. “I grew up loving my body. I had very supportive parents who told me that I was strong, confident, smart and beautiful, inside and out.”

Visitors to Treviño’s blog will find not only style and travel tips, but the influence of both her Latina and Texas heritage.

“Texas is unique because we have a lot of influences from different countries. I know my Texan style has a lot of Mexican influence, so I love wearing braids in my hair and bold and rich colors,” says San Antonio’s Candice Treviño, creator of “Smiles and Pearlss.” “I think that being a Latina blogger sets me apart from others, but I think loving myself in my own skin, Latina or not, sets me apart the most.” Courtesy photo

Summer style: Animal print or floral print? This is such a hard one because I’m currently dressed completely in cheetah print, BUT I think a floral print screams summer, so I’d have to say floral summer dresses.

Cover: Candice Treviño. Courtesy photo

Gabi De la Rosa lives in Houston with her husband and three children. You can usually find her at a great local restaurant or out exploring HTX with her family. Visit her on Instagram @gabioftheroses_htx