Celebrated fashion designer Patricia Coates weighs in…
I am sure that in your lifetime of watching pageants, whether locally The insightful businesswoman who is said to be a symbol of
or internationally, you haven’t always agreed with the Judges’ classiness has had several of her awe-inspiring creations leave lasting
Idecision on the queen. And sometimes we ask, what are they really impressions on runways across the world. Her mastery of perfection
looking for? Well, one of Guyana’s most celebrated fashion designers in designing earned her a nomination in 2009, for the esteemed
and pageant enthusiast will give us some insight in this regard. Guyanese Designer of the Year Award. However, in 2011 she was
Patricia Coates has maintained a strong presence in various honoured for her invaluable contributions to the Caribbean fashion
positions in the local world of pageantry for over 30 years. The former industry as she was awarded the Karib Nation’s Award of Excellence.
teacher, who worked in the private sector as well, has been described In an exclusive interview, Coates answers some critical questions
as being one who “emits a particular quality and style only associated which include what she thinks the judges of the pageant world look
with Legends.” for from the hopeful delegates.
Guyana Inc. Magazine (GIM): What are the judges looking for when choosing a queen, let’s say for the Miss Guyana Universe Pageant?
Patricia Coates (PC): The judges are looking for a particular look. The ideal queen must be a beautiful balance of certain qualities. She must be confident but not arrogant. She must be stunning, have the right physique and must communicate to the judges that she knows that she is the one. She must be graceful on the stage and not come off as though she is trying too hard to impress the judges and even her audience. The way she maneuvers on the stage must be effortless, even in her smile. In short, the judges are looking for well toned body, captivating smile, intelligence, charisma and a contestant who is sure about herself.
GIM: How hard do contestants have to train for the Miss Guyana Universe Pageant?
PC: Very Hard! We never take it easy with the delegates and training is done to refine the young women and transform them into graceful, well rounded princesses. Sometimes, some of the contestants would have to put in more work depending on their deficiencies but overall, the training package is never a walk in the park.
GIM: Of all the qualities a Miss Guyana Universe Queen must have, which in your belief is one of the most important?
PC: It would definitely have to be her ability to communicate. The Miss Guyana Universe Queen must be able to be the
Renowned Fashion designer, Patricia Coates (left) in the company of a model decked out in one of her ravishing designs
perfect chameleon and know how and when to adapt to her environment. She must know what is required of her. She should be able to communicate effectively with people of all walks of life. She should be able to converse on several topics ranging from politics to health to social issues and be able to contribute effectively on the subject being discussed. She is not just an ambassador with beauty, she is a beautiful woman who can make her presence felt and purpose realized from the manner in which she communicates with others, and that quality really tells you if the woman is truly the queen or not.
GIM: Taking into account the gorgeous and outstanding women we have sent to represent us at the international leg of the pageant for the past 12 years, do you think that there is any particular reason why they didn’t place?
PC: There are lots of reasons why I believe that some of the women have not been able to land a spot when they get to the actual Miss Universe pageant. But I don’t want to put the spotlight on the negatives because I don’t think we should focus there. We are growing from strength to strength and I believe that some of the contestants continue to push the envelope and do their best. However, I do believe that if financial support from the government’s part is improved, our girls would stand a better chance. It is about investment in our beauty ambassadors. Significant investment if I might add.
GIM: What are some of the mistakes made by some of the women who apply to be a part of the Miss Guyana Universe pageant and what is your advice to the future contenders?
PC: When we examine some of the women who apply to be a part of the pageant, it would seem as though they just got up on a whim and decided, “Hey, you know what? I am going to sign up for the pageant today” without giving thought to whether they are prepared emotionally or physically for what is to come and what it takes to be a worthy contestant. So my advice to the future hopefuls would be, invest in your training, invest in your education and invest in caring your hair, teeth and skin.