Women empowering women

Contributed photo
Contributed photo

Some women inspire. Some influence. Some empower. While there are so many ways for women to impact the world, childhood friends Kim Aries Almodiel–Prosevicius and Lesly Ann Gachalian use art and fashion to inspire and empower women through their clothing brand Marquesa.

As the brand name implies, Marquesa, which means royalty in Italian, aspires to feel every woman wearing their thoughtfully designed pieces royal, as well as feel confident, empowered and most of all beautiful.

Kim personally designs every piece and takes inspiration from the tropical weather of the Philippines and modern day women who are go-getters and “goal-diggers.”

“When we design each piece, we put ourselves into that woman who will wear our creations.”

Creatively blending the old with the new and the demure with the striking, their designs are something you can wear all-day long especially if your day is jam-packed and you don’t have time to change from a business outfit to a casual one as their designs are formal- and casual-appropriate.

To make every design unique, Kim and Lesly only produce limited pieces in every design and style in different sizes. For this, the founders of Marquesa also make sure that the clothes they’re going to use for their products are hard to find. Just like their best-seller “La Marquesa” dress, a show-stopping dress that makes for dazzling occasion wear with a dreamy floral print, and ribbon straps, which they could no longer reproduce despite the demand because of its hard-to-find cloth.

Other than empowering women through their dresses, Kim and Lesly also want to be able to provide a livelihood to local seamstresses and bring their glory days back, “We want to bring back the days when Cebuanos have their outfits made by local dressmakers.”

Admittedly, these lady bosses didn’t have a formal fashion school background, Lesly is a civil engineer by profession, and Kim is a senior marketing consultant, but it is their passion, dreams, mission and vision that inspired them to make a big move and establish their own brand.

Kim’s love for art, and fashion are also great factors in opening Marquesa.

“I grew up watching my mom and grandma, who were both dressmakers, work. Growing up, I designed my own outfit along with my sister. We even designed our own prom dresses,” she happily recalled.

Since then, Kim’s life-long dreams include owning her own clothing brand. Fast forward to today, Marquesa (@marquesaph on Instagram) has been established and well-loved by its growing clients.


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