MEETING Vania Romoff, currently the Philippines’ “It Girl” in fashion design, was a pleasant surprise.
With her fame and sophisticated demeanor, I was quite unsure on how to approach her. But, it turned out, this Cebuana lass, with her stunning mestiza features, was remarkably amiable and delightfully down-to-earth.
Her face beamed as we briefly talked about her best friend Joie Soberano, who also happens to be our family friend. “I was the maid of honor during Joie’s wedding, and Joie is also coming home from Switzerland to be my maid of honor”, Vania reveals.
The 29-year-old Vania recently visited Davao City to present her 12-piece capsule collection for Plains & Prints at the Chimes Flagship Boutique along Gov. Sales Street.
“Plains & Prints, like me, caters to the same kind of modern woman – proud, powerful and confident in her femininity. When designing this collection, I imagined a vibrant, light-hearted and beautiful woman who enjoys life. And, she expresses this love and optimism for life through the way she dresses,” Vania explains of her creative vision.
Each of the exclusive pieces reflect “Vania’s penchant for subdued drama with dainty ribbons, delicate embellishments, and flounce”.
“For this collaboration, I wanted to infuse a sense of playful optimism and celebrate the Filipino woman through wonderful prints inspired by local flora such as the bougainvillea and gorgeous ikat prints. I took these elements and worked them into classic silhouettes like shift dresses, wrap dresses and trousers, all staples for the working woman’s wardrobe,” the School of Fashion and the Arts alumna describes.
The impressive collection bears the modern romanticist’s signature ‘put-together’ style which is wearable, timeless and oh-so feminine. Expectedly very chic. Very Vania.
“I feel so happy to finally launch what I have been secretly working on since last year. I’m so blessed to have been able to come back full circle after having a baby and slowing down for a while. I am truly grateful for this collaboration with Plains & Prints and thank the owner/founder Roxanne Ang-Farillas for the trust”, expresses Vania, who grew up surrounded by fashion. Her paternal grandmother was Cebu’s first couturier while her mom and brother are into garment manufacturing and fashion design, respectively.
This is the second time that Vania and Plains & Prints have worked together. In 2016, Vania, along with other renowned Filipino designers, was part of The Heart of Fashion, a collaborative effort to bring awareness on breast cancer and supporting the advocacies of the ICanServe Foundation.
A perennial favorite of celebrities and the social circle for bridal wear and haute couture, “Vania captures every woman’s body and needs making it glamorous and stylish at the same time. I just love her clean lines, effortless vibe and good fit. She puts a distinct edge to her fashion, making it luxurious and elegant”, attests Phoenix Petroleum Philippines, Inc. director Che Uy, an esteemed fashionista, who is one of Vania’s loyal clients and dear friend.
Motherhood becomes her
Aside from launching her studio’s Fall/Winter Collection 2017 just this week, Vania is concentrating on exporting her bridal RTW, strengthening her online shop and producing a baby’s line in the future, encouraged by her lovable one-year old daughter Emilia Simone who is the busy working mom’s “source of inspiration and true muse”.
“Emilia inspires me to work harder. I wake up earlier than I would usually do so I can spend time with my daughter in the mornings. Actually, she wakes me up when she knocks on our bedroom door at 7:00 a.m.”, she giggles.
“I stay home in the morning and start work at 1:00 p.m. To achieve work-life balance, I delegate. I have a bigger team now who helps lessen my workload. I also spend weekends with Emilia instead of working on Saturdays”, the 2017 Zalora Style Awards’ Designer of the Year divulges.
In a moving Instagram post for her darling Emilia, Vania discloses that “for the first time, my heart gives its all, unconditionally and without limit. You are without a doubt, the best thing that has ever happened to me. I am filled with happiness and love”.
Indeed, motherhood has changed Vania’s life tremendously and she would not have wanted it, any other way.
Published in the SunStar Davao newspaper on July 15, 2017.
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