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OJ Hofer Recommends the Fashion Designers You Should Be Looking Out For

With a fashion community that’s growing everyday, Cebu is home to many young designers. Oj Hofer names his picks for the five up-and-coming names in the industry, who he feels will be dressing some big names soon.

With a fashion community that’s growing everyday, Cebu is home to many young designers, each with their own statement to share. Fashion designer and Zee’s fashion editor Oj Hofer names his picks
for the five up-and-coming names in the industry, who he feels will be dressing some big names soon.

photography KODA
hair and makeup JANICE BARILLO And NICKO DELA PEÒA
locale THE PYRAMID

Originally published in Zee Digital Vol.1

 

PERCIE LOVE REQUIERO

When did you know you wanted to be a fashion designer?
when I was younger, I fancied clothes, especially those with elaborate details. It started out as a hobby-making clothes for my daughter. It was two years ago when I finally decided to get formal training, and realized that designing is my passion.

How did you break into the industry?
In 2016, my group and I represented FIDA in a competition. Then, more opportunities came.

How would you describe your style?
Tailored, simple and timeless

Who are the Cebuano designers you look up to?
There are a lot of designers that I look up to, especially my FIDA mentors. Each of them has their own expertise that honed me to be where I am today.

What are your plans for 2018?
As a beginner, this year, I want to focus on having more exposure, experience, and to get to know more about the industry. I want to gain additional
knowledge from seasoned designers on how to handle challenges in the business, and at the same time, establish my brand.

Yoko Sato Li and Edward Castro

YOKO SATO-LI

When did you know you wanted to be a fashion designer?
Ever since I was young, it was really my dream to be a fashion designer, but eventually I forgot about that because of other priorities. My mom wanted me to take up nursing, so I followed her and even got my license. I also worked as a Loans Associate, and a bank teller for almost three years. It went well, but something still seemed missing. I rekindled my love for fashion. I tried to enroll in FIdA several times, but had doubts pushing through since I had a hard time giving up my stable job at the bank. I talked to some of my friends and family, but most of them weren’t supportive about taking the risk. It was my husband who was very supportive, and motivated me to follow my dream. I weighed things, and didn’t want to grow old and have regrets about not pursuing what I really love to do. I then realized that it meant a lot to me, and I fought for my passion and chased my dreams.

How did you break into the industry?
As someone who is still starting in the fashion industry, I think the FIdA Graduation Show Beyond Borders opened me up to a lot of opportunities.

How would you describe your style?
I am actually an eclectic person. I love to mix and match different styles and make it my own. It is important to have an eye for what you like, and what suits you or your client. I tend to like classic
style and go for a minimal look, but I also love trends. I donít really limit myself. I just want to make sure that it looks feminine but edgy, sexy but elegant and sophisticated, simple but unique, and also
clean polished.

Who are the Cebuano designers you look up to?
Cary Santiago, Philip Rodriguez and Harvey Cenit

What are your plans for 2018?
Hopefully starting up my own boutique

EDWARD JAMES CASTRO

When did you know you wanted to be a fashion designer?
Ever since I could remember. For me, what really triggered this love for fashion was watching Cinderella at a very young age. Watching the mice sew her pink dress was something I aspired to do when I was old enough to handle needles and scissors. I would practice draping handkerchiefs on my sister’s Barbie dolls. So I pretty much got into it at a very young age.

How did you break into the industry?
It wasn’t until high school when I started considering fashion design as a career. Before, it used to be only on paper. Being in an all-boys high school made me want to develop my own identity. Most of my peers wanted to be doctors, architects, engineers—I think I was the only one in my batch who showed up for the fine arts college orientation. Fast forward, I didn’t really take up fine arts in college, but I got my big break designing for the college pageants, and winning a few design competitions in school. I met a few established designers when I graduated, and they helped me get into the fashion scene. Eventually I got into Clothes for Life, and since then, I went from this wide-eyed neophyte to a full-time designer and stylist. #DreamsDoComeTrue

How would you describe your style?
My style is very eclectic. I can be at opposite ends of the spectrum. One day I could be fun, nonchalant and colorful. Some days, serious, dark and melancholy. It’s a bipolarity I have embraced with open arms.

Who are the Cebuano designers you look up to?
Cebuano designers are very talented, to say the least, but I have a few whose aesthetics resonate with me a lot. Protacio, for his clean lines and tailoring. Jun Escario for timeless glamour. Cary Santiago for his vision, and how he tells a story with his collection.

What are your plans for 2018?
For 2018, I’m planning to focus more on bridal wear. It’s something I really want to do, but didn’t have time to because of so much freelancing work. I want to develop a bridal line that reflects my design philosophy, at the same time relatable and marketable.

Jessica Ouano and Mike Yapching

JESSICA OUANO

When did you know you wanted to be a fashion designer?
I was always into clothes, ever since I was a little kid—actually costumes to be precise. Halloween was my favorite day of the year, and I loved being in theater because of costumes. I am also very much into cosplay, and I love making things. When I was in high school, I knew that fashion design was something I wanted to pursue.

How did you break into the industry?
My first big opportunity was creating a collection for the Kansai Collection fashion show in Osaka, Japan, with the help of a good friend of mine, Nobuo Koizumi. The collection was a collaboration with another designer from College of Saint Benilde, Jason Patricio. Jason did the designs for the garments, and I worked on the textiles. The project was also how I got into handwoven textiles, and working with the local weaving communities. I was also very fortunate to have been mentored by Oj Hofer for this project.

How would you describe your style?
My style is experimental and quirky. I love garments with simple silhouettes, combined with interesting textile applications. I love experimenting with textiles very much, and I always try to make it the highlight of the garments that I design.

Who are the Cebuano designers you look up to?
I love the work of Oj Hofer, he is such a master at draping. I also love the beautiful, intricate details of the work of Cary Santiago. They are both extremely talented.

What are your plans for 2018?
For 2018, I plan to focus more on experimenting with handwoven textiles, and creating more innovations together with the team at AnTHILL.

MIKE YAPCHING

When did you know you wanted to be a fashion designer?
The love for making clothes came at a young age for me, growing up and observing my grandmother and my aunt, who are both seamstresses. It was during high school when I got obsessed with designing clothes.

How did you break into the industry?
It was in my second year in college when the eighth edition of Mega Young Designers’s Competition was calling for entries. I was fortunate to have been shortlisted from countless submissions. It was a very big platform for me then, as a budding designer, as MYDC was the stage where prominent and renowned Cebuano designers started out, like Edwin Ao, Oj Hofer and Furne One.

How would you describe your style?
I have grown to love evening wear with a minimalist sensibility. Streamlined looks with little details that make for a maximum effect.

Who are the Cebuano designers that you look up to?
Of course, Edwin is always on top of my list. We may have different aesthetics, but the knowledge he has imparted me with are priceless. I admire Arcy Gayatin, Cary Santiago, Oj Hofer and Philip Rodriguez.

What are your plans for 2018?
To live in the moment.

Fashion

CEBU’S GALLERY OF ROUGE: Mistress of Disinfo, Vixen of Vexation and the Duchess of Disorder

Ogle La La
By Alexandra Fortabat de Hermès
 
Cebu’s own Lady Whistledown is back after a long hiatus and talks about the naughty ones who comprise the initial #TroubleTrifecta, three ladies who you may or may not know…
 
It’s been eight years since someone’s picked up this particular (jewel-encrusted) quill so thought it rather apropos to begin sharpening those French-manicured talons and polishing our sardonic wits once again. After all — dear amigas — there is only so much Netflix one can watch, or peloton one can engage in, or caviar-topped foie to prepare, while we’ve all been locked down in our kubôs for well over a year!
 
To be sure the last twelve months have been a rollercoaster of emotions, a carousel of follies and a series of blunders that have reversed decades of growth resulting in historical levels of unemployment while a very few have been channeling  Winston Churchill’s adage of “never waste a good crisis” a bit too much. While we can go on and on about the bungled and disastrous government response, we will limit our political commentaries here as we have no interest – nor inclination — to open that rather voluminous Pandora’s box. 
 
The armoires that we will explore will belong to three types of our island’s “alta” sociedad who – in this last revolution around the sun – made us cringe and bust out many tubs of popcorn through their sheer audacity, lack of sensitivity, and overall dopiness.  This –  ladies (and lady wannabes) – is therefore the debut edition of the  #TroubleTrifecta.
 
The first is that amiga who, by choice or plain predilection, just cannot keep her facts straight.  Let’s call her Mistress of Disinfo coz one simply cannot trust what comes out of her well-lined lips or read from her often convoluted (and run-on) status updates. In this age of ubiquitous and nearly instantaneous information and the proliferation of fake news, the least one can do is check the veracity of what one puts out in the social media realm.  As with anything else, quality is key!
 
The next Vixen of Vexation is that overbearing arriviste who is desperate to bowdlerize her courtesanal past by plastering her obviously enhanced and Gluta-enabled mug on every surface (and platform) known to modern man.  This self-proclaimed Madame Multiverse is quick to brandish her (dubious) accomplishments, has an affinity for B (or C?) rated actors and milks her closeness to certain members of the Old Guard.   In her perpetual quest for legitimacy and acceptance by the upper echelons, perhaps this Señorita aspirant should heed the advice of  Malcolm Forbes when he declared: “How to Succeed: Try Hard Enough; How to Fail: Try Too Hard.”
 
Our last Duchess of Disorder is definitely NOT the least in this Gallery of Rouge and has actually been the source of not just consternation but of many a disruption – and not in a good way.  This Soaper Woman is so-called due to her propensity to air out all her filthy lavada to anyone who will listen or bother to read her IG stories. Besides giving any Grammar Nazi a massive coronary, this Fräulein of Fracas has been known to commit acts of arson, has no qualms of engaging in online character assassinations AND seems to have a never-ending bevy of skeletons that are constantly feasting in her many closets. 
 
Ladies, please!  While we have to admit that we derive a certain guilty pleasure from your virtual explosions and implosions, they do get very prosaic – very quickly.  Discretion, like intelligence and proper manners, truly never goes out of style.
 
So there you have it folks. These tumultuous times we live in certainly do not need any more brouhaha so  please remember to be precise, don’t try too hard and always maintain a  certain sense of delicadeza. Not only will your lives be simpler and more pleasurable but maybe, just maybe, you may finally crack that clique that you’ve been clawing your way to be a part of.  

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Fashion

New Year’s Eve Dressing for 2020

What’s an ideal New Year’s Eve soirée outfit? Three of Cebu’s young fashion designers share their suggestions for the ladies on how to ring in the year 2020 in style…

“Holiday dressing is all about sheer skin and comfort. A silver gray palazzo jumpsuit with sheer lace cut-outs is in order.” -Mikhail Achas, Fashion Designer

“Holiday dressing is all about clean lines and sophistication. A tailored blacked tea dress with godet insertions will totally give out a modern vibe with a toast to the 50s.” -Bree Esplanada, Fashion Designer

“I chose this design because it is so comfy and light. The raffles make it look elegant and versatile for different events, like awarding ceremonies or a New Year’s Eve party.” -Eve Navales, Fashion Designer

 

***

Something to watch out for this year from these young designers will be their collection exclusively designed for the cast of Eve Ensler’s The Vagina Monologues for V-Day Cebu 2020, which will be staged in March. For more information, visit the Facebook page V-Day Cebu.

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Fashion

Rajo Laurel, Amina Aranaz-Alunan, and Bianca King Share Tips on How to Take Better Care of Your Clothes

To help keep your clothes in the best shape, check out these tips from Electrolux FashionCare Ambassador Rajo Laurel, along with the FashionCare Council members Amina Aranaz-Alunan and Bianca King.

Wear it well without wearing it out! That is the fashion philosophy shared by Electrolux, a
leading global appliance company from Sweden, when it comes to clothes. You don’t
need a lot of clothes to look stylish – just give them some TLC, especially when doing
your laundry.

To help keep your clothes in the best shape, check out these tips from Electrolux
FashionCare Ambassador Rajo Laurel, along with the FashionCare Council members
Amina Aranaz-Alunan and Bianca King. From washing to storing, these practical hacks
will help keep your clothes looking new for longer.

Check the Label
Acclaimed fashion designer Rajo Laurel shared that his number one rule when it comes
to caring for clothes is to check the care label, which teaches you everything from the
temperature, the kind of cycle and even instructions on drying, bleaching and ironing.
And if those laundry symbols look like hieroglyphics to you? Executive director and
teacher of SoFA Design Institute, and Creative Director of fashion accessories and bag
label ARANÁZ Amina Aranaz-Alunan’s practical tip: print out a guide that explains the
symbols for laundry instructions.

Caring for White Shirts and Tops
A staple in anyone’s wardrobe, the classic white tee is a great piece to build your
wardrobe around. It’s easy to dress up and down, going from casual to business-chic.
To keep your white shirt looking new, before washing, unbutton your shirt including its
cuffs and collar. Check the label recommendations for care guidelines. Use a laundry
detergent that contains bleach to really make your whites, white.

And if your white shirt or polo gets wrinkled easily, check if your washing machine has a
Steam or Vapour Care setting – this relaxes the fibres and removes odours to bring back
that soft, fresh feel to your white top.

Caring for Colours
Having coloured pieces is a great way to make a look pop but they are also prone to
fading faster than dark or white clothing. To help make sure your coloured garments
don’t lose their vibrance, sort your garments by colour before doing the laundry. Bright
clothes such as purples, reds and oranges can be washed together, so can bright blues
and greens. If a colour stands out on its own, consider washing it alone. Then check the
garment for stains and apply a small amount of liquid detergent to the stain and shake
gently in water. Turn your garments inside out to minimize rubbing of fibres. Choose a
low temperature and avoid hot settings that can cause fading. You can also use a gentle
wash cycle.

Caring for Jeans
Denim is durable but to make them last longer, especially the coloured and printed
denims or anything with a deep indigo wash, you need to give them extra special care.
The key to a long life is to wash at a low temperature and avoid over washing. First off,
be sure to wear your jeans for as long as possible before they are first washed to give
them a comfortable shape and a natural fade. Separate your jeans from white or other
brightly coloured clothes because they might bleed colour. Turn them inside out before
washing as well.

Dealing with Stains
The FashionCare Council members all share that it’s best to deal with stains
immediately. Soak or try to wash them off right away. For food and wine stains, Laurel
shares that he uses salt and soda water on the stains before washing as these help to
lift the stains.

Here are some other helpful tips to remove common stains: For ink stains, blot the
stained area with alcohol using a clean cloth and rinse thoroughly. For coffee stains,
first try using cold water through the back of the stain for 10-15 minutes. If the stain is
not fully removed, use liquid laundry detergent and a little cold water, or try using dish
washing liquid. Gently rub the liquid detergent or dish washing liquid with your thumb to
loosen the stain for about five minutes.

Proper Storage
The FashionCare Council members also shared that storage can play a role in keeping
clothes looking their best. Model and actress, Bianca King advised people to keep their
closets neat so you have a full account of everything you own and to know which items
should be hung or folded (if it’s a knit or weave). And speaking of hanging, Laurel and
Aranz-Alunan both mentioned the importance of using proper hangers – Laurel
mentioned avoiding those without foam defense as they could ruin the shape of clothes.
Another advantage of keeping a closet organized is it could help you plan your wardrobe
– you can rotate your pieces, as shared by Laurel, to help prolong their life.

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