Fashion and Beauty

Cary Santiago shares inspiration behind Gazini Ganados' Miss Universe National Costume, evening gown

Ratziel San Juan - Philstar.com
Cary Santiago shares inspiration behind Gazini Ganados' Miss Universe National Costume, evening gown

MANILA, Philippines — Cebuano fashion designer Cary Santiago dished that the Filipino symbol that allowed the national costume of Miss Universe Philippines 2019 Gazini Ganados to take flight is none other than the national bird: the Philippine Eagle.

“I created a national costume that is somehow worthy for an international event. I took my inspiration from our national bird,” the designer posted on Facebook.

“The design is not as flamboyant but the details are very intricate. It’s hand-stitched all coming from the same fabric with my signature laser-cut patterns," Santiago explained.


Santiago has also designed garments for Kris Aquino as well as the presidential family, including President Rodrigo Duterte and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte.

“For the evening gowns, I made several for her but we are down to two that will be used both for prelims and for pageant night. It is fabric manipulation sans the glitter. The silhouette showcases her figure which makes it even more beautiful,” Santiago’s post read.


The 23-year-old with a slender 5-foot-9 figure (175 centimeters) has been a long-time model of Santiago’s, the designer revealed.

“From the Origin models of Sven, Gazini has been my model since 2014 and she is the nicest. I can’t also say No to her mentor Jonas Borces. All these are a labor of love.”

The internationally-renowned designer, however, lamented the lack of state support for a prominent annual opportunity like Miss Universe.

“It’s sad to note that in our country, we don’t really have the support of the government or any agency that will help us fund and produce beautiful pieces for our Philippine representative/s. But I assure everyone that I did try my best in designing and creating masterpieces for Gazini.”

Gazini hopes to claim a back-to-back victory for the Philippines as she competes against 89 other representatives at Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta, Georgia in the United States.

The only country to achieve this feat is Venezuela in 2008 and 2009.

The 68th Miss Universe pageant kicks off on Saturday, December 7 (Manila time) with the Preliminary and National Costume Competition at Marriott Marquis in Atlanta where the Miss Universe beauties will compete for a spot in the top 20.





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