Loving Philippine Fashion

I don’t consider myself a fashionista. I have never owned a single dress designed by a fashion designer, or designers slated to become the industry’s next big names. Probably the most expensive dresses I ever owned in my life was when I was single and I had a very generous father who doted on me and bought me trendy Ready-to-wear (RTW) clothes from Rustan’s Department store. The only fashion show I attended was in the UK when I was in my mid-twenties. I was struck with the cobalt-blue fashionable dresses that were presented before me and my sister. I am totally clueless when it comes to catwalk fashion though that doesn’t mean I don’t dress up in style.

So, what was I doing at Philippine Fashion Week Holiday Collection 2009? Well, maybe it was time to take that big leap of faith when it comes to choosing dress styles. Perhaps it was time to fantasize and imagine myself trying out unique creations. Secondly, I am in the lookout for fashion designers that use our local materials. There were just too many shows to cover but I narrowed myself down to Sunday’s show where I thought Premier Collection E might cover unique designs. I covered Premier Collection C but thought their designs were just too un-wearable for my taste.

Just as Premier Collection E started, US Ambassador Kristie Kenney took the vacant chair beside me in the “Reserved for Media” seats. Tessa Prieto seated across me motioned US Ambassador to move to her vacant chair but Kristie said she was fine seated beside me. The US ambassador turned to me, offered her hand and said “Hi, I am Kristie”. Oh wow, I found her so gracious and humble. I turned to the media man beside me and whispered “What’s her family name again?”. He was just as clueless as I was so I plurked and asked my plurk friends if they knew Kristie’s family name. Thanks plurk buddies.

The Buensalido PR provided me with a press kit before the show and it came in quite handy when I whispered some information to Kristie as the show unfolded. Like me, Kristie adored the designs that used native materials. Hmm, we seemed to have the same taste.

jaki penalosa
Jaki Peñalosa

What makes Jaki Peñalosa’s collection my favorite among the others was his skillful blend of Filipino elements and Western modes of dress. Following the trends set by the designers in Milan and New York are unavoidable – like it or not, they’re the fashion capitals of the world. But the modes put forward by the West are not set in stone; they are very much open to modification and adaptation to local tastes and indigenous flavor. Jaki Penalosa was able to do this with great success, and I hope more Filipino designers can do the same thing. (Check more photos at Premier Collection E)

oliver tolentino
Oliver Tolentino

My next favorite designer for Premier Collection E was Oliver Tolentino. I don’t know where to begin explaining why I love Oliver Tolentino’s collection, but I suppose it has to do with his ability to combine everything I was looking for in a designer – wearability, novelty, and a down-to-earth-quality. The first thing that caught my eye was his use of bright, happy hues and lively patterns – check out the sky blue kimono-style coat and the deep blue harem-inspired outfit. Like Jaki Peñalosa, he was also able to successfully combine indigenous fabrics with Asian elements and Western modes of dress. And like Chris Diaz’s design, Oliver’s collection stands out while remaining very rooted to the earth.

There were just so many designers for Philippine Fashion week and I am sure there are more designs that utilized indigenous materials. I wanted to call it a day until I remembered that Marielle , my daughter, mentioned that her high school classmate was a fashion designer and even had a solo show.
sassa jimenez
I adored Sassa’s overall look which is ““polished, sleek, and sexy” and suited for the young ones. (Check out more of her designs in another entry Sassa Jimenez Solo Show)

I believe that ““You have to feel good to look good” as Sassa points out. ““I want all of my pieces to bring out that message. My dream is to see women wearing my creations and think to themselves, ‘Wow, I didn’t know I could pull off an outfit like this! Now I can’t wait to try other styles!'”

I’d like to say so myself and perhaps check out these upcoming designers who can come out with a unique yet suitable style for my prime time age. I am not sure if I want to be be more daring, to try out something different, and ultimately, to discover different dimensions of myself through various types of clothing styles. Fashion is a personal choice we make every day. It’s something that can define you.

Am I ready to get off my comfort zone or stick to tried-and-tested combinations?

View Related Entries of Philippine Fashion Week

Premier Collection E featuring Chris Diaz, Enrico Carado, Jaki Penalosa, John Abul, Len Nepomuceno Guiao, and Oliver Tolentino

Sassa Jimemez Solo Show

Premier Collection C featuring Anthony Nocom, Bang Pineda, Estien Quijano, Jerome Lorico, Marc Tana, Odelon Simpao

Spotted at Premier Collection E was Former First Lady Imelda Marcos, US Ambassador Kristie Kenney and Tessa Prieto

Thank you Bryan Boy for hooking me up with
Tiffany Anderjaska of Runway Productions.

Noemi Lardizabal-Dado (1346 Posts)

You may contact Noemi (noemidado @ gmail.com) for speaking and consultancy services in the following areas: Parenting in the Digital Age (includes pro-active parenting on cyber-bullying and bullying) ; Social Business ; Reinventing One’s Life; and social media engagement. Our parenting workshop is called "Prep to Prime (P2P): Parenting in the Digital Age (An Un­Workshop)" P2P Un­Workshops are conducted by two golden women in their prime, Noemi and Jane, who have a century’s worth of experience between them. They are both accomplished professionals who chose to become homemakers. This 180­degree turn also put them on a different life course which includes blogging, social media engagement and citizen advocacy. They call their un­workshops Prep to Prime or P2P, for short, to emphasize the breadth of their parenting experience. They tackle different aspects and issues of parenting ­­ from managing pregnancies, prepping for the school years of children, dealing with househelp, managing the household budget, to maximizing one’s prime life and staying healthy through the senior years.


About Noemi Lardizabal-Dado

You may contact Noemi (noemidado @ gmail.com) for speaking and consultancy services in the following areas: Parenting in the Digital Age (includes pro-active parenting on cyber-bullying and bullying) ; Social Business ; Reinventing One’s Life; and social media engagement. Our parenting workshop is called "Prep to Prime (P2P): Parenting in the Digital Age (An Un­Workshop)" P2P Un­Workshops are conducted by two golden women in their prime, Noemi and Jane, who have a century’s worth of experience between them. They are both accomplished professionals who chose to become homemakers. This 180­degree turn also put them on a different life course which includes blogging, social media engagement and citizen advocacy. They call their un­workshops Prep to Prime or P2P, for short, to emphasize the breadth of their parenting experience. They tackle different aspects and issues of parenting ­­ from managing pregnancies, prepping for the school years of children, dealing with househelp, managing the household budget, to maximizing one’s prime life and staying healthy through the senior years.

The comments posted on my blog are moderated. I reserve the right to remove comments, words or phrases that are defamatory, abusive, incite hatred and advertise an email address or commercial services or just plain spammy. I also reserve the right to remove posts that to my opinion are off-topic, irrelevant, ad-hominem, personal attacks and or just plain rude.
  • meg

    I adore clothes that use our native materials too. I also love fashion accessories that use shell, wood and fibers. Nice photos.

    • http://aboutmyrecovery.com Noemi

      too bad I didn’t watch most of the shows. I am sure there were other designers out there who used indigenous materials

  • lemon

    Ms. Noemi, I have always noticed that about Amb. Kenney, she always livens up her outfits with indigenous/ethnic accessories. And it so suits her.

    I admire you for contemplating styles outside of your comfort zone. Cool!

  • http://www.millionaireacts.com Millionaire Acts

    Nice collection of clothes! I hope to attend these kinds of events.

    Millionaire Actss last blog post..Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs for 2009

  • http://www.allaboutelizabethp.blogspot.com/ Beth

    I really love to attend fashion shows! I just wish someone would invite me to one! 🙂

    Good shots here, Noemi!

    Beths last blog post..Awards: Lovely, Favorite and a Plaque

  • http://www.imroanne.com Roanne

    I love that Jaki Penalosa dress (pic above), it’s very contemporary yet yet materials used look native. Have you seen Mich Dulce’s collection? My, oh, my they are so fabulous! Wish I would have been there in person. My contact in Buensalido told me there’ll be another PFW in October. 🙂

  • http://www.RadiantView.com Lorna Dietz

    Noems, I love Philippine-style fashion. My first coffee table book (as a co-writer with five other writers) was about fashion, “Arkiteknik.”

    More developments:

    Anthony Cruz Legarda, the fashion visionary I work with (since 2000), one of Patis Tesoro’s protegees, will be back in Manila this September. This time, since I will be there, together, we’ll be able to check what other indigenous fabrics make wonderful art-to-wear fashion.

    Here’s the scribd profile I created (the words are a combination of many people’s writings): http://www.scribd.com/doc/13358629/Anthony-Cruz-Legarda-Complete-Profile-2009

  • http://ruthie-loveandlife.blogspot.com/ ruthie

    I like those collection photo , often it hit my mind how much the cost or can i afford or just imaginary.honestly i like philippine fashion.

    ruthies last blog post..Kick A Boo

  • http://bkarms.com Secret service weapons

    Is Philippines more influence with European fashion and or Asia? I’m happy to say I’m a big fan of Asian Fashion, and I love clothes in Philippines, which I’m proud of for them to keep original clothing created there. My favorite Designer would be Mitch Dulce.

  • Anonymous

    Filipina are known for their beauty. No wonder that there are so many of them who do love to be in fashion. Even though that you are not wearing any fashionable wardrobes but I could see that you do have potential on this field. Have confidence to try it.

    style bible

  • MarkDowner

    This country is known also for famous fashion designers. Each of them are entitled with different works in the world of fashion. All of them are very creative for making their own projects.
    mode für mollige