Fashion and Beauty

Athleisure with a modern Mindanao tribal twist

NOT-SO-YOUNG ADULT - Mae Coyiuto - The Philippine Star
Athleisure with a modern Mindanao tribal twist
Fashion and fitness: Kaayo founder Marga Nograles with Odette Pumaren, Sofia Coyiuto,Yanee Alvarez and Tootsy Angara in their Kaayo athleisure outfits.

The first time Kaayo founder Marga Nograles heard about 808 Studio feels like a lifetime ago. Weeks before the pandemic would shut things down, her husband noticed the soon-to-be-launched dance fitness studio and took a picture since it felt perfect for Marga. A year later (following safety protocols), Marga, along with Tootsy Angara, Yanee Alvarez, and Odette Pumaren got to finally step into the studio for a demo class. As a group who loved dancing more than any workout, they still felt the adrenaline rushing through them the next day. “Hmmmm. So when can we go back again?” Marga’s friends gleefully asked her. Her husband was right: 808 was the perfect match for Marga. But it turns out, the studio also became the ideal partner for her social enterprise, Kaayo Modern Mindanao.

Going beyond a clothing brand, Marga envisioned Kaayo as a platform to honor Mindanao, its people, its culture and its beautiful indigenous tribes. But similar to most businesses in the pandemic, Kaayo had to creatively think out of the box to continue giving sustainable livelihood to the women she worked with.  With the increasing monotony and uncertainty this past year has brought, Marga found solace in working out. “Dancing, yoga, jumping, simply just moving helped me get back my groove again.” She discovered so many different amazing local activewear brands and soon realized that one of her favorite local brands, Core Athletics, lived 10 steps away from her. Together, they created Kaayo Move, a small activewear collection that stays true to Kaayo’s mission: providing sustainable livelihood to indigenous tribes and empowering women. A collection of leggings, cycling shorts, bra tops, tank tops and jackets all hand-beaded by the T’boli Tribe of Lake Sebu, Kaayo Move by Core Athletics celebrates strength, wellness, and purpose while honoring tradition.

For stronger bodies: Getting ready for a dance session at 808 Studio are Yanee, Odette, Marga and Tootsy.

808 Studio founders Sofia Coyiuto and Dorthee Li also know firsthand how uplifting it is, especially as a woman, to feel your body getting stronger. More than anything, 808 was built in the spirit of community. As someone who loves to dance but was intimidated by the competitive nature of dance studios, Sofia made sure that 808 is a space where everyone feels free to move. Just like their studio anthem proclaims, 808 “is the place where you get to be braver.” 
In honor of Women’s month, Kaayo Move and 808 Studio are bringing the worlds of fashion and fitness together to celebrate the power of every aspiring fit Filipina.

808 Studio is hosting Women’s Week with Kaayo, a weeklong event with female empowerment-themed classes, wherein 808ers get exclusive giveaways and discounts. To book, go to www.808studio.ph. For the Kaayo Move Collection, visit www.kaayoph.com to shop or message kaayo.ph on Instagram to inquire.

808 Studio founders Sofia Coyiuto and Dorthee Li: “808 Studio is the place where women get to be braver.”


  • Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

or sign in with