Bench’s unique show: You can feel it
#NOFILTER - Chonx Tibajia (The Philippine Star) - September 8, 2015 - 10:00am

As one of the guests noted, “Fashion shows are so boring.” You only get to see the clothes for a split-second, less if the music is up-tempo. You won’t have time to take notes. Your photos will be blurry and over-exposed from the stage lights. And chances are, you’d be at least a good 10 feet from the ramp, even at front row. Maybe realizing that the audience these days is more interested in details, taking good photos and discussion, Bench, HerBench, Human, Kashieca and Bench Body recently showcased their latest collections in a more audience-friendly format.

At The Showroom at Bench Tower, live mannequins — models that fashion followers have gotten used to seeing for seconds at a time on the runway — held their positions for almost a full three hours wearing Bench’s holiday collections, shifting and changing poses from time to time, even interacting with the audience who seemed at ease and pleased with the format.

The first exhibit right at the entrance presented Kashieca’s retro-boho looks. Keeping its feminine and youthful spirit, the brand’s interpretation of holiday fashion is anchored on the fact that the “ber” months are party months, dressing models in clothes that are both festive and wearable. From crisp blouses and cropped tops, to maxi dresses and midi skirts, the pieces are functional — in them you can sit, wine and dine comfortably without looking frumpy and less than picture-perfect. Piping, pleats, pockets (woo!) and prints breathe life into basic pieces.

Human’s holiday collection combines whimsy and edgy. Think skate park party complete with glitter, face paint, and boom boxes. Positive talk tees, eclectic patterns, and casual wear reimagined make up the collection, which draws inspiration from the Internet and uses emojis as its central theme. Denim is a dominant fabric, not just for jeans but also jackets, dresses, even hats. Footwear is zany — tri-colored metal sandals, metallic pointed brogues, and glow-in-the-dark slip-ons stand out.

Bench and HerBench pieces imbibe urban cool. Classics are layered for a more relaxed, cool vibe for Bench, incorporating expected elements like patterns and patchwork to give the clothes a bolder look. HerBench fuses the feminine and masculine, lending a tougher, more rebellious feel to its pieces. Lace skirts are paired with bomber jackets, sweatshirts with slacks. The ‘80s and ‘90s influences are apparent in the hybrid styles, creating an off-kilter look for the girl who is both edgy and friendly.

Bench Body’s exhibit was a wakeup call: a bikini-ready body is ideal throughout the year — not just for summer. Thankfully, the pieces are made for all body types. Undergarments for the holiday collection range from lingerie with embossed prints, studs and layering of lace, to much more streamlined pieces. Red, of course, is part of the color palette.

After guests made their rounds, they were free to return to the presentations they liked and take a closer look at the pieces, take better photos, even ask models to pose. Fashion was served that day — hot, fresh and oiled to perfection.





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Available at Bench, Human and Kashieca stores

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