National Costume Wish-List for Eva Patalinjug

If I were given the opportunity to create a concept art for a national costume to be worn by Eva Patalinjug for Miss Grand International, I would gladly accept the chance.

I actually have a couple of ideas for her national costume that I feel would be great for her pageant in Myanmar come October 25th.
1. Sinulog Festival Costume – of course this should be an option as Eva comes from Cebu. The Sinulog festival queen outfit would be so perfect for her mestiza beauty and will tie-up perfectly with her hometown of Cebu. I would love to make the concept art in a grandiose and extravagant manner, something that the MGI pageant seems to favor.

2. Boxer Codex Pintados Costume – one of the oldest documents in existence regarding the pintados of Visayas is the Boxer Codex that illustrated the ornate tattoos and the rich gold heritage of pre-Hispanic Philippines. The difference here is I would make it with a little more color to make it festive.
The national costume for Eva should be something that represents her and her background. I hope that Eva would be given a great wardrobe for her competition. I believe that she can actually be the first Filipina Miss Grand International winner…


PhotoCollage of the Day: Farah Abu Accessories by Farah Abu

The PhotoCollage of the Day feature today is on the very talented accessory designer from Mindanao: Farah Abu.

I would be totally honest in saying that the first time I met her, I was speechless with her sense of style. Wearing a simple LBD accentuated with a very fancy body jewelry and chic earrings, she stood out during the national costume shoot of then Binibini 20 Catriona Gray. Little did we know then that she together with Jearson Dimavivas and Jojo Bragais would be making the outfit that would win the Pitoy Moreno award for Best National Costume in Binibining Pilipinas 2018.

Here is the designer in her show in the US… and yes that on the far right is Alaiza Malinao

As a tribute to each of these talented designers, I am featuring them one by one on the blog. Visit her official Facebook page at Farah Abu Accessories by Farah Abu. But in the meantime, check out these lovely creations of hers…

Catriona’s Mak Tumang Evening Gown

The journey of Miss Universe Philippines Catriona Gray had many interesting side stories. From her preparations to her training down to her wardrobe, each had a special tale to tell. Today’s post is just one of those, it’s about her evening gown by designer Mak Tumang.

Mak was approached by Catriona herself to create an evening gown for her for the Binibining Pilipinas pageant. Not a stranger to dressing up Catriona, the designer have dressed Catriona back in 2016 in Miss World with a gorgeous burgundy number that she wore at the victory ball following the coronation night. So with the second time around Mak was supposedly the only designer considered to do the Bb. Pilipinas gown.

This is the post of the designer about his design as posted on his Facebook account: “Going back to the time when the newly-crowned Bb. Pilipinas-Universe 2018 Catriona Gray messaged me in December 2017 and told me about her intention to join a national pageant as an independent candidate and she wanted me to do her evening gown.
I must admit that I was adamant to commit at first, blame it to my bad experiences in the past from a particular camp and certain individuals. However, after our exchanges of messages and felt her sincerity that made me decide to give it a go.

Back in January, there were only two colors that were considered for Catriona’s Binibini wardrobe: white and gold/ yellow. So it was no shock to see her in a gold colored gown. The evening gown was a closely guarded secret by her team together with her national costume. Not everyone involved has seen a glimpse of the design and those that did had to be mum about it. Even when I saw by accident the detailed sketch of the gown, I had to keep my knowledge of it under wraps. What was agreed to be kept inside the vault had to be kept inside the vault. And that was admirable of her squad as everyone knew how to keep their silence in time for the pageant finals.

What I knew about the gown was that her team wanted something different, something not yet done in Philippine pageantry in terms of the design. The general idea was that she should be wearing something that was very chic, modern and one that had ‘visual texture’. And that was exactly what Mak Tumang’s gown delivered. The gown moved and sparkled and gave a collective gasp to everyone who has seen it in person (or so I’m told) during the internal shoot for the gown. Mak, who is a very couture designer, used at least 4-6 different colored Swarovski crystals to provide for the visual spectacle that was further enhanced by see-thu insert which added more texture to the gown.

Winning Best in Long Gown was such a topping on the proverbial cake. And surely Mak is one who can proudly claim a type of ownership to it. This feat was truly only possible with the type of vision and expertise a real couturier can deliver, thankfully Mak Tumang is one hell of a designer…
For Appointments & Inquiries info
LANDLINE: +639778211110
23 Tinajero, San Antonio, Mexico, Pampanga 
Hidalgo Place, Rockwell Center

Kiana Valenciano & Miss Earth Jamie Herrell Experienced Racial Discrimination at LA Fashion Week!

Racial discrimination is still an issue nowadays, more so in the fashion industry. The latest news that singer Kiana Valenciano (Gary Valenciano & Angeli Pangilinan’s daughter) and former Miss Earth Jamie Herrell alongside with five other Filipina models were denied to attend the LA Fashion Week is a disturbing one.

California, which is considered to be the state that is more tolerate to people of diverse background, is currently having the Los Angeles Fashion Week. In a news report by ABS-CBN, “the young singer flew to Los Angeles over the weekend after being invited to open a fashion show last Monday. But at the night of the event, she was baffled to find out that she, along with Miss Earth 2014 Jamie Herrell and five other Pinay models, were denied access to the backstage.
When asked why, one of the producers allegedly told the group that ‘no Filipinos‘ were allowed.
According to Kiana’s manager, her mom Angeli, in an interview with ABS-CBN News, they were ‘puzzled’ because the show was to feature works from Filipino designers Rocky Gathercole and Resty Lagare.

According to GMA News, “International makeup artist Cherry Ordoñez and Alan del Rosario told “Unang Balita” on Tuesday that some members of the staff of Los Angeles Fashion Week asked Filipino professionals to leave the backstage.
The producer of the show Eric Rosete allegedly did not like the idea of having Pinay models on the runway.

Clearly, the LA fashion industry still needs to be more inclusive of the type of models they employ. And the mere fact that a ‘No Filipinos Allowed‘ policy is a clear illustration that racial discrimination is still strong in the US, more so with the fashion industry.

Sashes&Scripts’ Selection of 12 Best Costumes in Bb. Pilipinas 2018!

The Jag Jeans and the National Costume fashion show had finished last March 3rd but it still dominates pageant discussions on social media. While the BPCI has selected its 10 best costumes, I felt that the quality of national costumes this year is so high that I have to shout out my own picks of 12.

12. Agatha Romero in John Cliff – being so close to the stage, I could see all these intricate details of the bodice of this terno. On top of that is how parts of it are added with LED lights!
11. Anjame Magbitang in Sonny Boy Mindo – this was one of those costumes that would make you feel you are a Filipino. This Katipunero costume was a breathe of fresh air as it was apt for the youngest Binibini in the pageant.
10. Shane Tormes in Polly Lagyap – another creative take on the national costume in this year’s competition. It is said to celebrate the Laing and the Magbubuko, which was an awesome idea.
9. Kristie Rose Cequena in Richard Barretto – an out of the box costume that celebrates the Moriones festival. This was one of the more creative ensembles that night.

8. Janette Sturm in Jay-R Gamboa Flores – the novelty of this costume is so much welcome. I can only imagine the long hours of creating an outfit that is almost devoid of fabric. Yes, the gown was almost made entirely out of interlocking beads!
7. Stephanie Abellanida in Archie Castillo – black and gold is my color du jour! And I loved everything about this costume, the headpiece was superb as well as the intricacy of the beading on the outfit.
6. Mary Joy de Castro in Albert Figueras – would have preferred the outfit with a different headpiece. I remembered the headpiece of this costume being worn by Emma Tiglao in MWP.
5. Eva Patalinjug in Philipp Tampus – gave drama in spades! Styled like a golden era screen goddess, the worked the costume to the Nth level.

4. Sandra Lemonon in Edwin Uy – the girl performed her best ‘Urduja’ moves in this costume. Although I don’t get which was the Ibong Adarna part, Sandra carried it with aplomb.
3. Aya Abesamis in Chico Estiva – thank God for the cape or else it would have looked like a generic gown with the apir fans and a sunray headdress. Aya carried it effortlessly.
2. Sarah Joson in Jay-R Gamboa Flores – it was a gorgeous ensemble. And it looked better in person. This amalgam of several indigenous tribes’ outfits was perfection. I loved the tiny brass bells in it as well.
1. Vickie Rushton in Francis Libiran – that punch of red at the start of the natcos segment placed the bar high. I thought this is one of the best that night. It was haute couture levels in its construction technique!
I felt that the BPCI selection has shut out a number of gorgeous ternos so I am giving it equal footing here on the list. There is also a diversity in terms of creative and out of the box choices for the costumes. I commend the designers for a leveled up national costumes this year!

Another thing I also observed that the BPCI selection of the 10 best NCs seems to be a test of which fandom will likely be the noisiest online. So I am very much excited to see which of the girls’ fan groups is the strongest on voting for the national costume award.
Note that since I had helped conceptualize the national costume for Binibini 20, it goes to say that it has automatically been excluded in this list, you know, for obvious reasons.

Catriona’s National Costume by Jearson Dimavivas & Farah Abu

The national costume of Binibini 20 Catriona Gray is a collaborative effort between several creatives and designers who worked on different parts of the costume. While the concept may have been my contribution, I would have to say that the bulk of the credits should be given to the designers who created the costume and the accessories.
Jearson Dimavivas was the perfect choice to create the costume. He is from Mindanao and his point of view of the traditions and cultures of southern Philippines was of intrinsic value. He is a designer for royalties in Mindanao and he was dedicated to delivering an outfit that is fit for a queen. The painstaking work that went along the ensemble warranted a 24/7 commitment. His insight to replicate a mosque’s dome for the headdress was an ode to the people of Marawi and the survivors of the siege.

The main outfit as well as the tasseled umbrella was created by Jearson. The umbrella was originally lighter than the final outcome. However some sort of welding was needed to stabilize the arcs inside the umbrella. It was sort of a testament to Catriona’s fighting spirit to keep holding the umbrella up considering that it weighted 4 kilos. Jearson also did a little jazzing up on the custom-made shoes that Catriona wore from shoe designer extraordinaire, Jojo Bragais.

For interested parties who would like to have Jearson create a one of a kind outfit for you, here is how you can contact the designer. Trust me, you will enjoy working with him…
Instagram: @jearsond
Viber & Whatsapp number: +639156648658

Farah Abu on the other hand created the amazing accessories that went along the costume. Those gorgeous shoulder sweeper earrings that Catriona wore? Those were specifically handcrafted by the very talented Farah. Her work is just extraordinary. The first time I met her in a shoot, I had to pick up my jaw that got dropped with her statement necklace piece that she was wearing in the collage above. It was a covet-worthy piece!

Farah, also from Mindanao, handcrafted these exquisite jewelry pieces that went along Catriona’s costume. She created a lovely pair of shoulder sweepers that would help frame Catriona’s face even more. Not to mention the couple of rings set with Swarovski crystals and semi-precious stones. One bracelet she did was to genius, that it had chains that connected a ring to it! All these were used by Catriona in the national costume show.

Ladies and pageant girls! Give yourself a treat and get yourself one or a couple of Farah’s jewelry. I can guarantee that it will make your wardrobe pop!
Mobile number: +63 917 716 2153
Instagram: @farah_abu

This photo was a snapshot taken at the Bb. Pilipinas 2018 Candidate exhibition at the Gateway Mall…

With the designers working in unison, the output was a visual orgasm of sorts. It was no wonder that it elicited thunderous applause from pageant fans that watched the national costume fashion show last March 3rd. Rightfully so, this costume was among the top 10 national costumes that will serve as choices of the Best in National Costume award via online voting.