By Bambi Torres-Camus
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International Women’s Day was recently celebrated, paying tribute to all the strong women who have fought hard in empowering women today. An icon in both fashion and business, Coco Chanel simply put it, “A girl should be two things: who and what she wants.” This March, Crimson Hotel Filinvest City, Manila invites all ladies to take charge by giving themselves a well-deserved pampering break.
Crimson Hotel general manager Gerhard Doll shared, “In the past, we have done a one-day event; but we always want to take it a bit further. So we are starting now to make it a month-long celebration.” Highlighting the month-long festivities was the launch of the For Her Series. He added, “It is a multi-faceted gallery exhibit, we have art, we have fashion, we have jewelry, which is going to be displayed until March 18. And since we have a beautiful gallery, it actually fits this exhibit.” The exhibit features six highly talented individuals who have been recognized locally and internationally.
Starting off the list is Beatriz Accessories by Carissa Cruz-Evangelista. What began as an advocacy to create beautiful products with Filipino artisans and livelihood groups, the brand was born in 2012. The brand is known worldwide for its vibrant, colored bags. Each one carefully crafted by laying each strand of thread by hand, one at a time to form the different geometric patterns via a special gluing technique. Carissa shared, “The collection that we have is actually inspired by the weaves of the different textiles that c ome from the Philippines and we love bright colors because it’s a bright tropical country.”
Another featured designer is Adante Leyesa. Starting out his career as an accountant for eight years, one would not think that he would become an accessory and bag designer. This self-taught designer’s works have been recognized by various award-giving bodies in the fashion industry, one of which is being named the grand winner 2011 “Weaving the Future” in the accessory division, a social design competition organized by the Fashion and Design Council of the Philippines (FDCP). During the exhibit, Adante pointed out the Cocoon Bag and said, “This is part of the ethnic series and is very special because it is made of various fabrics, hand-woven from all over the Philippines by different tribes.”
A neophyte among the group, Pauline “Popo” Racho just had her first exhibit last year at this very venue. The exhibit was entitled Hiraya Art Exhibit where she was welcomed into the art world. This self-taught artist works on several media but particularly towards painting and mixed-media. In this exhibit, her works focus on abstract cubism in female portraits.
Another highly anticipated artist and designer in the mix is Michelline Syjuco. This multi-awarded sculptor and painter is known for her avant-garde fashion accessories. Incorporating art into fashion, her radical work consists of torch rusted hand-beaten metal, hand carved wood, and industrial hardware. The themes of her work revolve around imaginative flights of phantasmagoria, which are deeply rooted in mythology.
Adding to the prestigious list is Joel Escober, who until recently started creating ready-to-wear pieces. An answer to stylish women’s quandary, Escober recently created ready-to-wear pieces that are feminine and romantic, with a hint of unpredictability. Escober, who got his big break in 2003 at the Timeless Terno competition for his design of a low-waist terno, has represented the country in several competitions and fashion shows, including the British Council’s International Fashion Exhibit in 2014.
Completing the roster is Otsirav’e by Carlo Evaristo. Known for his hand-crafted metal bags and accessories, Evaristo presented his collection from the Premiere Classe International. One of the stand-out pieces was the Sorbetero Cart (local ice cream cart). He explained, “I made a metal bag series but it is based on a canvass with wood carving on metal frame. The top is all metal-plated and shaped into a sorbetero cart.” He added that each sorbetero piece features a different painting and is individually-signed by the designer.
This is how Crimson Hotel sees fit to celebrate women’s month. As Doll worded it, “We are celebrating women. We are celebrating beauty, elegance, and fashion—and this is how we see it.”
The For Her Series runs until March 18. For more info, go to crimsonhotel.com/manila or call (2) 863-2222. Like CrimsonFilinvestCity on Facebook, follow @Crimson_Alabang on Twitter and @crimsonfilinvestcity on Instagram