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RTW: Ready To Welch

Fashion shows are usually my little piece of Disneyland. You get to see magical creations from these geniuses that we call designers.

Fashion shows are usually my little piece of Disneyland. You get to see magical creations from these geniuses that we call designers. From properly constructed dresses to custom tailored suits and from time-to-time, if you are lucky and in the right type of show, you see these extravagant pieces that you know deep inside you will never look good in, but can not help but simply still gawk at and appreciate.


Fashion shows are a chance for designers to express their creativity, personality and cutting edge designs. The clothes they make represent who they are as a part of the industry, what makes them unique and what makes them stand out from the rest of the millions of designers out there. These shows are crucial especially to the up and coming ones. To put it out simply, if you are not ready, do not do it unless you want to make a fool of yourself, fall and carry that scar around wherever you go. There is no way the brilliant minds of this industry can easily excuse or palliate your dirty work.

Now let us move on to why I christened this entry as such and how my little piece of heaven was crushed and stomped on by Lucifer himself.

With the expectations I had in mind, I was deluded by a recent show I attended. Considering it was labeled as ‘prestigious’, I honestly expected a lot from it. It was a show for fashion designers to show off their custom made chef-d’oeuvre. Instead all we got were supposedly hyped up versions of Ready-To-Wear collections. Promod had genuinely better items and since when was RTW considered as high fashion?

Let me narrate the whole experience as short as possible:

Before the show began, which was thirty minutes late (typical Filipino fashion which I was sort of okay with), they were showing a slideshow of all the designers who were about to introduce their collections. Trying my hardest not to be so judgmental and shallow since we are talking about fashion here, the only thing I noticed was they all had one thing in common: Paris. Not Paris Hilton, my dear haters, but Paris as in the beautiful city of France, one of the four fashion capitals of the world. It is like this is a must-have for every designer to put in their resume. Maybe these designers have never heard of New York, Milan and London? And can we add Tokyo to that list? No matter, it made me sick. Add some variety to your experiences, look around you. Try to build substance in the country you live in. In defense to those designers though, it is healthy to travel and participate in different cultures but at least reflect that on your work, do not leave it as bragging rights if you actually have respect for what you do.

Now to the collections!

First, let us talk about the menswear collection that night. Nothing but one designer, came close to the style and practice of an actual man. If you base your collection on a theme or genre, please make sure you meet the standards. Saying your collection is inspired by Hip Hop, we expect your pieces to look more like Kanye West or P. Diddy, full of life, color and history, not something that looks like it came out of Alexander Wang’s closet. Just because your clothes are loosely fitted and paired with white sneakers, doesn’t instantly make your items Hip Hop. You have to dig deep, look into it’s soul before you start making an entry that will insult a culture.

Speaking of Alexander Wang, I saw a lot of apparel that were inspired by him that night. The casually cool, downtown style that embodies Alexander Wang. I personally believe that most Filipino designers lack the knowledge when it comes to menswear. They are all trapped in these four walls: rock and roll, sex, suits and casual wear, most of them can not even get out. I think it is time for Filipino men to start breaking their shell and express their personalities through the clothes they wear. If a few designers can lead a pack, the rest will follow. Maybe rock and roll is your thing, maybe not but when all of you think of the same thing and no one is any different, there is something wrong.

Combat boots does not describe a hardcore male fashionista. Where are the bags, the 2012 fashion trend for men: two tone, the skirts, colorful pieces and the ever-so-beautiful double monks?

On a lighter side of things, I would like to send my appreciation to that one designer who brought in dresses for men. But next time, make it look more flattering. Do not make your model look like he is about chant with one of the Gregorian monks or post-circumcision.

Raf Simons Fall 2010

Let us have a temporary sex change and divert ourselves to the ultimate sinners that evening, the women.

Now, let me just start with the models. Although some people will never find curvy attractive, I personally think that is just a matter of getting used to. Marilyn Monroe was not waif-like but she was a sex symbol and most of the women in this country are not size zero. Designers should throw maybe one or two plus size models every now and then. It sometimes just looks dead to me, so maybe a little meat can compensate for the lack of creativity. Most of the models I saw are emaciated. More like clothes hangers than people actually wearing clothes. There is a limit to how thin you are, and that is called Gisele Bundchen, not horror house skeletal. Maybe you were born that way? Well that may be the first time I have witnessed a spawn of two skeletons. I should congratulate you for being the first of your kind.

When using fashion icons or let us just the generalize the term, celebrities, as your inspiration, make sure you envision these people actually wearing your clothes or if they would actually even wear it, and if you do not get that close to your incentive, I advise you just label your collection as Scheiße. Very Gaga and it lives up to your collection.

The R’nB collection. Beyonce would never wear a wrap dress and leggings or an ordinary dress with a very low neck line in her concerts. If she was, she would not be Beyonce or she would actually go to Forever 21 and save herself some money to buy a cheeseburger. Most R’nB women are flamboyant. I saw nothing of that. It really looked like a retail shop was doing a show that night.

A collection has to compose of different looking pieces. Not the same dress recycled over and over again. I do not know who these designers are trying to please. The fashion industry or Greenpeace.

Craftsmanship is very important. Your illustrations and rendering might look commendable, but if you do not know how to sew, your work will look like it has been done by a frog, and that is saying something because frogs can not sew, just like you. Now you have something you can collaborate with.

Now to Lady Gaga. The woman is all about no boundaries. If you take a look at her wardrobe, everything to her is wearable. Just because your wedge is covered with glitters or your jumpsuits are covered in Tron-like line details, does not, in any way make it instantly Lady Gaga. This is how you trample on their dreams: take away the glitters and the details, the clothes will look ordinary; take Lady Gaga’s Kermit the Frog details, she is naked. The details make the dress, not the other way around. Besides the collection is very much based on Alexander Wang’s Spring 2012 regarding on the Tron-like details and masculine structure.

Britney Spears is not a fashion icon. She is a music icon but there was not even a single piece that lived up to the Toxic singer. Not even her famous, hipster jeans or her patent leather jumpsuit. So do not make me start nagging about how they ruined Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe because I guarantee the apocalypse will be here sooner than the 21st of December this year.

Although the color blocking collection was not so bad, it was actually pretty decent and well constructed. But overall, majority of the collections failed. Most of the clothes did not even fit properly, it looked like a disease was hanging on the model’s body. There was no edge, no variety or even a piece that made everyone’s jaw drop. It plateaued miserably. Aside from the color blocking, there were no leopard prints to be found anywhere, thank goodness. There is nothing high-end about that these days, unless you are asking for extreme Kardashian attention. Leave that to the retail shops, do not put it on the runway anymore.


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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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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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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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