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Androgyne: Breaking barriers |


Androgyne: Breaking barriers

Pinky S. Icamen - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines – It was at the recently concluded third season of Manila Fashion Festival, held at Green Sun in Makati City, where a highly-curated lineup of designers showcased their recent works set to push the market, artistry and integrity of fashion holistically.

A celebration of the Filipino talent, this four-day affair, presented by Art Personas, trained the spotlight on the innovative ready-to-wear trends that allowed the traditional runway experience to continually evolve.

The fashion festival’s second day saw a movement that shattered stereotypes courtesy of “Nowness,” the Spring/Summer 2016 collection of Androgyne by Seek the Uniq, whose collaborators are our very own Allure creative director Luis Espiritu and Seek the Uniq’s Mikka Padua.

The collection, inspired by the growing presence and relevance of gender-less dressing, is a contemporary everyday wear of multicultural influences defining a refreshing point of view. It evokes a style statement that celebrates fashion individuality melded with Androgyne’s aesthetics, which are a fusion of Japanese-European sensibilities highlighted by Filipino handmade detailing.

“Fashion is relevant in a person’s life,” says Espiritu, “It is something very personal and a reflection of oneself. Clothing should be a means to enhance a person and not be taken over by it. Fashion is a celebratory exposition of self-love and authenticity beyond the stereotypes and boundaries set by religion, sex, race, culture, etc.,” he explains.

Inside Green Sun’s The Eye, Up Dharma Down’s song Turn It Well built up the rhythm as the models took the catwalk. It was refreshing to see an all-star cast of “real people” walk the runway. Those who traversed the 70-foot catwalk for Androgyne were Allure editor and PeopleAsia editor-in-chief Joanne Rae Ramirez, fashion designers Randy Ortiz, Ivarluski Aseron, Joey Samson and Mia Arcenas, Rita Nazareno, Liza Ilarde, Ferdi Salvador, Agnes Desiderio, Angel Jacob, Manu Sandejas, Sara Black, Jo Ann Bitagcol, Malou Romero, Ronnie Salvacion, Debbie Eastwood, Tatum Ancheta, Mau de Leon, Katrina Holigores, Corine Alegre, Bianca Salonga, Girlie Benitez, Grace Tagle, Fatima Rabago, Peter Stoychev, Penelope Uy and Toni Abad.

Perhaps it was the concept of breaking boundaries that gave a positive energy throughout the seven-minute show as rousing applause and cheers were aplenty when the models, who were all smiles and exuded a laid-back vibe, walked the runway one by one.

It was a parade of mostly color-blocked pieces that spoke of form and function. There was also a variety of fabrication that echoed unique patterns and evidently, comfort was not compromised. The fabrics’ movements spoke of freedom — from gender-bias, from the industry’s unrealistic standards.

It is through the creative minds of those with an inspired vision of the now that can send a strong statement about embracing one’s individuality.

“Androgyne’s vision is to create an insightful and new avenue in contemporary dressing in the local style landscape and hopefully, transcend into Philippine culture,” Espiritu says.

Nowness is Androgyne’s take on this showcase of the beauty of uniqueness without borders. Photos by Jay Dayag

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