How to be in the mood for celebration when holiday parties are canceled

Published October 23, 2020, 8:44 PM

by AA Patawaran

Dress me up with stars, flowers, and gratitude

What’s great about being human is you always have a choice. No place is too dark if you choose to look at the bright side. It has been over seven months of worry and fear, so for holiday 2020, New Mood is ready for “Celebrations.” After all, there are still many things worth celebrating and you will still have many occasions to dress up for, whether it is brunch with the family or an afternoon with friends (no more than six at a time, please) or even an early evening party (as long as you remember to break it up before curfew).   

A fashion website co-curated by Dong Ronquillo, Puey Quiñones, and Cathy Binag as a positive response to the pandemic that has to this day shuttered designer ateliers, New Mood bands designers together in a new and safer platform—online.

The new season offers a selection designed to perk up the holiday mood from a new batch of designers whose varied sensibilities are sure to match yours.

Chase the holiday blues away with the ultimate weapon—gratitude. We round up some of the things you can be grateful for, self-discovery among them, because each of those things is worth celebrating.

…the sun, conscious that it was Saturday, would blaze an hour longer in the zenith.

Marcel Proust

Each day could feel like any day of the week, so why not make every day like the weekend? Wrap each day around you like Rosanna Ocampo’s style-is-me-at-ease pieces whose color, cut, and motif all spell like a weekend romp in the fields, free as the birds perched in the prints, or at an al fresco café in the city on a lazy afternoon, the subtle floral patterns on sheer tops fluttering in the gentle breeze. No wonder Rosanna is a perennial favorite of Manila’s most stylish.

The principle that light can be in two places at the same time is absolutely extraordinary.

—Alex Davies

And yet that is exactly where many of us are, at home yet working, in a pandemic yet healthy, captive yet free, caught in times so tough we have no choice but to take it easy. Randy Ortiz’s collection gives the holiday season a dash of bold colors, the better to keep the mood up, and drapes it in loose silhouettes that keep both body and spirit free to dance. Each piece is clean and fun and versatile enough to allow the wearer to put on any hat, whether on a Zoom meet or at tea time with a few friends over or alone swaying to Bruno Mars’ “The Lazy Song.”

The revolution will look fabulous.

—Lucy Shea

Yes, because among the direct results of the pandemic is a more conscious appreciation of nature and the planet. Hindy Weber’s collection for the season is a celebration of that. Crafted from raw, natural, and biodegradable materials, every piece adheres to such design practices as using certified organic textiles, reusable or natural trimmings, plant and water-safe dyes, and ethical manufacturing. And yet, every piece is uncomplicated, unostentatious, the better to bring out the luxury of you in a world that is safer and more lasting. Mix the pieces with anything old and new from your closet to match your mood or purpose. 

We are all of us stars, and we deserve to twinkle.

—Marilyn Monroe

Chris Nick’s Old Hollywood-inspired collection is a form of defiance, a chin up against the tendency to dwell in the darkness, just as the 1920s emerged from a decade of war and the bubonic plague. Each piece in the collection at once conceals and reveals the female form in tulle, satin, silk, and wool mostly in black, the color of power, seduction, fantasy, and mystery. Classic never dies so bring out the classic in you, but play it up with Chris Nick’s style signature that mixes tailored pieces with evening dresses, embellishing masculine silhouettes with fringes, feather, and sparkle.

Style is more about being yourself.

—Oscar de la Renta

And being yourself without the distraction of the outside world for such a long stretch of time is among the many luxuries the pandemic has afforded you. In Rhett Eala’s pieces, let it loose in relaxed shapes and silhouettes, drape it in natural fabrics, express more of it in color and prints.

…Now, the most precious thing there is.

—Eckhart Tolle

We have more time now than we have ever dared to ask for and it flows in Jun Escario’s easy-does-it pieces in muted tones, in which to dress for afternoons in the lanai, barefoot in the fallen leaf-strewn garden, or even just lounging around in the sun-speckled living room, frozen margarita in hand.