Filipinism-A A +A
Thursday, August 9, 2012
IT is said that once is enough for a wise man, twice is too much. But then, what is wrong with doing too much if it is for the love of our country’s symbol of distinction?
That is why Live! makes another round of tribute in the observance of August as the Buwan ng Wika in the Philippines. This calls for another set of Filipiniana clothes or ternos to give life to the expression, “action speaks louder than words”—or more like “fashion.”
Filipiniana dresses can be thought of as an evolution of the traditional baro’t saya while the barong Tagalog has retained its role as a formal wear for men. Together they make for the modern match in terms of fashion. This duet sings praise not only for stylish apparel but for nationalism, too. Thus, while speaking in a patriotic language is deemed admirable, so should wearing something patriotic be.
“Filipinisms” are English words or phrases resulting from the literal translation of Filipinos of English terms. Some classic examples are napkin for tissue and CR for restroom.
Fashion makes it own translation. The concept of Filipinism is conceived to illustrate the notion of beautifully fusing fashion and patriotism. Translated to deed, four young designers came together to create their own impressions of being a Filipino. Each piece they contribute surely stimulates pride in wearing the national language.
Roger Salazar took inspiration from the success of a leading Cebuano designer in artfully bringing out the splendor of a woman’s body shape. He likes to think of this as his way of honoring artistry and the natural feminine physique.
He employed stretchy lace set in a lovely light caramel-brown hue with an inner lining of black spandex to provide a charismatic contrast to the over lay. The dress is daringly cut to a curve-hugging form that surprisingly flares out, starting from above the knee point. Its hemline is made of soft tulle with horsehair to emphasize the bias cut of the bottom part. A petticoat underneath ensures no less than a stunning effect.
Roger also prepared something for the homme to marvel at. He crafted a two-toned barong Tagalog, which exhibits intense blackness at the hemline that gradually fades out into a light gray on the way up to the chest area.
Another set of barong Tagalog was created by Lemuel Rosos. He took the traditional outfit and gave it a twist to achieve a contemporary look through an artful application of hand-painting. He made sure to make a silhouette that appears to be “neo-classical in nature because of the modified wearability that allows a wearer freedom to enjoy his heritage.”
He structured the outfit such that it hugs the body but does not constrict any movement, instead it boosts up fluidity. He used a fabric that is dyed in black and accentuated it with stones and beads to promote a kind of manly finery.
A notable and somewhat eccentric take on the terno is dared by Bree Esplanada. He curiously drew his idea from inkblots and motorcycle jackets to make possible of his goal to show a “very futuristic look; strong piece and elegant at the same time.”
He crafted a two-piece dress, top of which is a peplum jacket with tulle on the pockets, sleeves pleating on the side and hand-painted inkblot print on the front part. It is paired with a very long high-waist maxi dress that is made of chiffon.
Still another peculiar take on the Filipiniana is done by the only rose in this team, Pinky Magalona. Besides making a single-shouldered version, she also took her inspiration from the Japanese origami. She wants to call this piece as orinuno, meaning “folded cloth.”
She folded pieced of satin and chiffon fabrics, then had them hand-sewn together to form the origami dress. The technique she used created a multi-dimensional illusion. Present still in this creation is the Pinky’s trademark of fringy style played on fibers.
So many ways and materials can be discovered and explored in designing the Filipiniana and barong Tagalog. But more than that, it also matters that such clothes are worn not only fashionably and elegantly but with utmost dignity.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on August 10, 2012.