Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Tragedy of a Third World Designer

I almost choked on my croissant while browsing style.com!

What are the chances of me and a first world, Paris-showing designer having somewhat the same idea - details, concept and all?

What are the odds that Gareth Pugh would show for spring/summer 2009 his love for pleats and having all his clothes with black colored back and a lighter color on the front, same as mine?

I don't know if it's a blessing or a curse.

See Gareth Pugh:

See one sample of my pants for spring/summer 2009:

It's the same pleat detail and all black back!

I know for a fact that I didn't copy him since I've formulated my own concept way before his Paris presentation. I can't help but be slightly irked though because let's be real, some Filipino designers back home do copy other designers. I'm slightly worried people might think I did copy Gareth Pugh. Ugh! I don't even like his designs.

Well, sorry for the rant. I just have to go on with what I've started because frankly I don't have time to revise it and also because I've submitted already my concept and drawings to the organizers of Philippine Fashion Week.

Bahala na si Batman.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Vogue Siem Reap

I love fashion magazines. I think it's my only vice. I've published my own magazine before called, err, OWN. It was shortlived - produced only two issues because during the production of the 3rd one I was already preparing to move here in Cambodia. Things got in the way and eventually I just let go of it. But I'm still itching to revive it. I love the process of making one. When I was in college I got to edit our school paper and it was the conceptualizing and the process of making it that fascinated me so much. Everytime I open Vogue Paris I'm always wishing I'm part of the whole thing. Well, I dont know what lies in the future, eh? I always believe dreams are there because it can come true.

My friends David and Mikee are here for a visit. After a wonderful dinner of special adobo squid cooked by Mikee I showed them the atelier. Of course, they got playful with all the clothes sample, the fabrics and the accessories lying carelessly there. I encouraged Mikee to try some stuff on and then it was camwhore time! We really had fun.

The whole concept of the shoot is the closure and end of an unrequited love.

There's some cultural and historical flavor to the styling as well which alludes to a certain time or figure.

I hope you enjoyed it!

All clothes from the collection of Don Protasio.

Additional accessories from Loven Ramos.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Remaking fashion

I read in International Herald Tribune recently about the ongoing craze in Japan for vintage stuff or ukay in our own vocabulary. O di ba, even the Japanese love to thrift shop!

Read the article here.

What caught my attention though is that a lot of designers have been 'remaking' and refashioning old clothes into new ones. Not a new concept though since Martin Margiela and Junya Watanabe have been proponents of such movement. Michiko Suzuki of Y's Red Label of Yohji Yamamoto recently used deadstock bomber jackets to craft dresses and separates for her collection. The eco-chic movement would definitely approve!

Junya Watanabe's reworked military jackets on the runway for Comme des Garcons.

A half waistcoat, half dress from Maison Martin Margiela.

It's just that I've used that same concept in some of my collections before and I've recently revisited that same concept now. Here, I've combined a black tee with a polka dotted one, cutting the latter in half and fashioning it as a curving sleeve.

On this one a knit print skirt was transformed into a tank top. Very Margielic, no?

Here's another piece that was before an ugly knit but I've transformed into this quirky shawl/waistcoat hybrid. It's a layering piece.

Another piece I'm loving is this combination of jersey, knit and cotton net top. The white knit detail came from this ill designed tee that was trying to be some sort of Comme des Garcons. It was really bad. But I love the texture of the knit and for P5 it's really nothing. A little bit of cutting, sewing and voila! I've got a cool tank.

I've recently unloaded my closet and set aside some pieces that I'm planning to rework. It's really very eco friendly. It's re-using old stuff to make something new and usable. It saves money and energy, there was little carbon used to rework it. It's creative! I mean isn't it cool to brag to your friends that what you are wearing is something old but then you reworked it and made it smashing?

And if you are scratching your head on how to get started, just follow the lead of Maison Martin Margiela:

1. Cut two clothes into half.

2. Sew separate pieces with each of the other piece.

3. Voila! You have two clothes ala Martin Margiela.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

My everyday bag.

To Paolo, here's a post about my everyday bag, a Longchamp. I got it in HK this year when I was there for HK Fashion Week. I have a regular Longchamp nylon one that Tita Jaki gave me and it's so easy to use and a real sturdy shopping bag. Washable pa! So I didn't need any convincing about the quality of the brand.

The one I got has a black leather handle with a much thicker woven nylon fabric for the body. It has a bag tag with a logo stamp.

Here's the zipper detail and the bag lock made of a black-ish metal. For contrast, the stitchings are in orange thread.

On the four corners there are leather guards to protect the side edges.

When I saw this one I got attracted to its black color and the fact that it has shoulder strap. It's lightweight and packs easily if not in use. The roomy size makes it an ideal bag for travelling.

DP shoes

Let me do a shameless plug for my DP shoes, among other shameless plugs I've been doing in this blog. Gotta earn money ya know! Hehehe!

The first design I came up with is this blue gladiator boots which I was supposed to use for my spring/summer 2008 collection.

I had to change it into this gray color because the blue leather we ordered from Vietnam couldn't arrive on time.

For fall/winter 2008 I was exploring color and prints in my collection and it was clearly a departure from my darkly tinge palette. So I came up with two designs: this classic lace-ups with buckles and a rather odd multi-buckled boot in pastel green, fuchsia pink and silvery gray mixed with black.

My intention is really for lightness. The boots is kinda experimental. I haven't seen a shoe like that before. At first I hated it because I thought the proportion was a little bit off but then when I started testing it and wearing it around town, it seemed quite normal actually.

Now this mandals is my best seller.

I'm actually surprised of its popularity. Someone wants to order it in red.

Kudos goes to Kawadjan who ordered it first, asking me to redesign the high boots into a lower version with an open toe. He was about to embark on some fashion-in-motion performance art in Bangcock that he needed a slightly perverse footwear to stomp them poor people there. From what I heard his market value increased and there had been reports about Kawadjan stalkers, pregnancy issues and this talk about him being gay. Ah, the trappings of being a celebrity!

This lower height of the original gladiator boots was ordered by Gibo. It didn't fit!

As a surprise I changed the color to red! I'm waiting for his testimonial in the vein of, 'DP shoes is better than sex!'

Order na kayo!

Fashion Diary 7



Top: DP hablon vest with black tank + grill shades from Beijing (from Loven)

Pants: gingham ukay shorts + checkerboard belt

Shoes: Muji


Top: 'co tank

Pants: gingham ukay shorts + checkerboard belt

Shoes: Muji sneakers


Top: tee from People are People

Pants: Evisu

Bag: Bench

Shoes: Giordano Concepts


Top: 5cm tee

Pants: Bo Parcon cropped pants

Shoes: K-Bond


Shoes: DP f/w boots

Bag: Longchamp


Top: Giordano flesh tee with ukay vest

Pants: Pinstripe, multi belted pants

Shoes: Muji

My fave 'langaw' brooches

Another double brooch by Jor-el Espina.


Top: Muji gingham shirt

Pants: from People Are People with Topman red leather belt

Shoes: Giordano Concepts

Monday, September 22, 2008

Ukay boy

Where was ukay when I was growing up as a teen? I was so into Helmut Lang that time that it would have been so cool to have found this top. But I can't complain. What are the chances of me finding such piece in some smelly market? And at 5 pesos only!

I wasn't really into ukay before maybe because the ones I've encountered were depressing. Especially those coming from the US, I swear the selection is like boring, Gap here and Abercrombie& Fitch there. Totally uninspiring! See that gray Dries Van Noten top, almost new and with a Joyce label, came from Hong Kong, of course. Those thrift clothes from there and Japan are the best if you're a label whore like me. I mean, isn't it thrilling to find a DVN at 10 pesos?!

Another recent piece I'm so excited about is this Comme des Garcons Homme tee my friend Mike found for me. A little expensive at 100 pesos, it's something I've always wanted to buy but thought to be so expensive for a regular tee. The 'bastusan' print (to borrow CVS's term) makes it all the more different and so extra yummy!

On the contrary, I'm not anymore a label snob now that everything I find is so dirt cheap. This 'co tank top is just pure love. Made in Japan, it simply uses the softest cotton. At 5 pesos.

Another 5 pesos buy is this gray zip sweater with a glittery fabric. Medyo, the weather is quite erratic these days and it's good to have something on hand to shield you from the elements. No label at all but could have been a Margiela for the feel and cut.

These 2 shorts, graphic printed and the other a gingham fabric, are perfect for some lazy Saturday eclavu.

I've recently discovered my love for walking shorts. It's so casual here, from where I am. At least, even when I'm looking casual I don't like I'm part of the military surplus brigade, you know, guys in khaki cargo shorts and very loose tee. Ewww!

Last Sunday I got the 5 pesos surprise of my life when I pulled this Comme des Garcons Shirt button down from the heap. Haven't worn it yet but i'm just enjoying the fact that the cost of it is like a piece of gum.

Do you go thrift shopping also?