FAME and fashion unite
FAME and fashion unite
#NOFILTER - Chonx Tibajia (The Philippine Star) - March 12, 2014 - 12:00am

It’s the commercial equivalent of an art fair, one that gets the knickers of every remaining Domino fan this side of the world in a bunch. Why is Manila FAME so exciting? Because it’s been known to challenge that fine line between art and design, showcasing locally made furniture that is refreshing even to us. Charles Eames said, “Design is an expression of purpose, and it may (if it is good enough) later be judged as art.” The pieces are almost always at once both — the thoughtful marriage of the practical and the imagined. On the 59th edition of Manila FAME, which opens on March 14, is yet another exciting mashup with the unveiling of tropical wear collections from local designers in Manila Wear.

Designer Josie Natori spearheads Manila Wear, which is in itself a sort of a promise that it is going to be a fashion event that’s not to be missed. It’s a bi-annual presentation, now in its second year, of the finest selection of summer-inspired clothes. This edition’s theme, Urban Resort, alludes to the prevailing jet-set mindset of the cool and the fashionable. Manila FAME creative director Budji Layug, whom Natori is collaborating with for Manila Wear, says “the pieces capture a youthful, modern energy.” “They are inspired by the traditional but presented on a modern level, which makes them exciting. Plus they are wearable and they travel well,” he adds.

Layug, who is known for his work in the architecture and interior design realms, is crossing over to fashion for the first time. “I’ve always loved fashion, but now I’m learning more about it.” On the trend of how fashion is melting into interior design and home accessories and vice versa, he says, it’s a natural thing. “One, you live in and the other one, you wear — but both have to be consistent with your style,” he says, citing Hermes and Ralph Lauren as some of his favorite international labels with fashion-to-home crossovers.

Meanwhile, locally, Layug, together with Natori, the Center for International Trade and Expositions (CITEM) and the Garments and Textile Industry Development Office (GTIDO) are bringing together 15 young designers for home décor and 12 young fashion designers — all products of Red Box, a Manila FAME program that plucks promising designers for training, development and exposure. He mentions Heima, designer of hip, quirky furniture and home décor, as one of its members.

For Manila Wear, Amina Aranaz-Alunan, Carissa Cruz-Evangelista, Maco Custodio, Lally Dizon, Natalya Lagdameo, Adante Leyesa, Joyce Makitalo, Arnel Papa, Malou Romero, Ken Samudio, and Nicole Whisenhunt will be showing contemporary pieces created from traditional design methods, while Jun Artajo, Tipay Caintic, Joel Escober, Twinkle Ferraren, Anne Marie Saguil, and Lulu Tan-Gan will feature handcrafted apparel. Filip+Inna’s Len Cabili will be showing her new collection as well, displaying once again her handle on indigenous materials.

* * *

Manila FAME and Manila Wear will be held at the SMX Convention Center, Mall of Asia Complex in Pasay City on March 14 to 17. For information on Manila Wear at Manila FAME, interested parties can visit www.manilafame.com or e-mail info@manilafame.com.ph.

ADANTE LEYESA AMINA ARANAZ-ALUNAN ANNE MARIE SAGUIL ARNEL PAPA BUDJI LAYUG MANILA MANILA WEAR WEAR
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