She began designing in 1975, after marrying textile entrepreneur Alfredo Serrano, and her creations quickly became everything the most flirtatious women wanted in their wardrobe. So much so that even the English actress Joan Collins wore her overalls and dressed other international celebrities such as Gina Lollobrigida, Sophia Loren, Catherine Deneuve and Maya Plisetskaya.
During the government of Raúl Alfonsín, Elsa was in charge of the wardrobe of the first lady and several wives of officials. And although until now she had not been interested in getting into the world of politics, she began a path that would increase her fame to unimaginable levels.
For María Lorenza de Alfonsín, among so many dresses, she made a delicate light blue piece that she used for an official visit to the United States in 1987. And that same year, Norma Aleandro wore a spectacular design at the Oscar awards ceremony in which “The Official Story” was chosen as the best foreign language film.
Serrano was also the star of two of the most prominent marriages in show business. He first dressed Susana Giménez for her wedding with Huberto Roviralta and created an unforgettable dress. “I dressed Susana for twelve years for television and for her life. And also my mother and daughter. For me, Roviralta was a man. I used to go to the channel a lot. One day he told me ‘I’m getting married’. This would be the November 20 and I had to go to Europe to look for some fabrics for some Arabs. I made her the dress and she came later and tried it on to put the closure on. The petticoat was made of French lace. I think that dress was copied by the country”Elsa told “Teleshow” two years ago.
And in 1989 she was chosen to create the wedding dress for Claudia Villafañe, who married Diego Maradona no less than at the Luna Park stadium. The piece was made with 800 rock crystals, 1,500 precious stones and 5 kilos of crystal beads from France and made Claudia look very elegant on her big night. “It was a great responsibility: the whole world was looking at that unattainable dress “the designer recalled years later.
And without a doubt during the 90’s the eyes of the fashion world were on her. Already with a long journey and recognition of the environment, she was in charge of dressing Zulemita Menem when her parents separated and she took the place of first lady. They shared countless trips and Elsa’s designs were always present, on any occasion.
However, after Carlos Saúl Menem’s term ended, Elsa and Zulemita were at odds for a long time. The reason? The designer claimed that the young woman owed her more than two million dollars for the more than 600 dresses she had made for her, but she had never collected. But after a meeting in the courts, Zulemita and Serrano reached an agreement and resumed the close relationship they had had for years. In fact, Elsa dressed Menem for her wedding.
The 2001 economic crisis was fatal for Serrano, who saw the empire he had built through years of hard work and sacrifice collapse. But far from giving up, the seamstress became a monotributista, closed her maison and began serving specific clients, with the designs she had. And little by little, she managed to recover.
His last job on television was in 2019 as a jury for “Dressmaking”, where he shared his knowledge with amateur designers. And on the night of September 16, he lost his life in a fatal fire that broke out in his Retiro department due to an electrical failure.