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This year’s Samsung Metrowear series is a landmark for Philippine fashion, in more ways than one: aside from celebrating its seventh year of lauding Filipino fashion designers, Metrowear 2009 also marks a milestone for Metro Magazine, which is now on its 20th year. For this milestone celebration, Metro Magazine gathers together 100 designers, both from the major fashion groups and from independent circles, for a runway presentation like no other. As a tribute to the magazine’s anniversary, each of the designers has created one definitive piece to pay homage to the continuous influence of Metro Magazine in the Philippine fashion scene, and its support of local designers through the years. “This is, historically, the biggest gathering of designers under one roof at one time,” says Metro Magazine editor-in-chief Katrina Holigores. With senior independent designers, young taste-makers, Cebuano talents, and even artists from different fields of fashion coming together in one spectacular runway show, the Metrowear 100 is a definitive event in Philippine fashion. Members of The Young Designers Guild (YDG) showcase designs for streetwear: Patty Eustaquio, Mitzi Quilendrino-Bustos, Reian Mata, Louis Claparols, Brian Leyva, John Herrera, Ferdi Abuel, Eric Delos Santos, Veejay Floresca, Regine Dulay, Aries Lagat, and Jerome Lorico. Red carpet aesthetic is demonstrated by the Fashion and Design Council of the Philippines (FDCP) members Dong Omaga-Diaz, Randy Ortiz, Tonichi Nocom, Vittorio Barba, Tippi Ocampo, Rajo Laurel, Ivarluski Aseron, Joey Samson, Ricci Lizaso, Ramon Esteban, Gerry Katigbak, PJ Añador, JC Buendia, Jojie Lloren, Hindy Weber-Tantoco, Lulu Tan Gan, Len Nepomuceno-Guiao, Avel Bacudio, Frederick Peralta, Jerome Ang, and Joel Escober. Cebuano designers interpret the fun vibe of summer with their resortwear designs: OJ Hofer, Raymond Kuan, Protacio Empaces, Jr., Mario Edward Escario, Rinante Manabat, Philip Rodriguez, Marichu Tan, Edwin Ao, Arcy Gayatin, Salvador Malto, Cary Santiago, Albert Arriba, William Manahan, Wendell Quisido, Mary Ty, Harley Ruedas, Philip Tampus, Barbie Alvez, Peewee Senining, Ivan Belocura, Jojo Romoff, Rei Escario, Dino Lloren, Mique Yapching, Dexter Alazas, and Felix Yu. Senior independent designers Patrice Ramos-Diaz, Rhett Eala, James Reyes, Dennis Lustico, TC Alvarez, Jan Garcia, Francis Libiran, Mich Dulce, and Norman Noriega take on modernism for their runway designs, while younger independent designers Martin Bautista, Puey Quiñones, Kate Torralba, Chinny Pichay, Choc and Yvette Religioso, Rosanna Ocampo, Tina Lirag, and Nat Manilag created outfits that speak of modern sportswear. Ronaldo Arnaldo, Johnny Abad, Ivan Dela Cruz, Delby Bragais, Rholand Roxas, Roland Lirio, Edgar Madamba, Jontie Martinez, Ole Morabe, Oskar Peralta, Lito Perez, Raoul Ramirez, Richard Papa, Fanny Serrano, and Edgar San Diego of the Fashion Designers Association of the Philippines (FDAP) bring couture to the runway, while accessories designers Joey Enriquez, Gerry Sunga, and Amina Aranaz-Alunan from the FDCP, and Rocio Olbes, Butch Carungay of Atelier Avatar, Rafe Totengco, and Arnel Papa lend their creations to the presentation. Wrapping up the Metrowear 100 ramp with his seven-piece collection is the renowned Master Ben Farrales. Participating in this year’s Samsung Metrowear series is an esteemed honor for the designers. Each of them brought their fashion visions to life by creating a unique piece for the show, drawing from myriad influences and inspirations and using the most creative materials. Scotchguard fabric with bold houndstooth print is the main fabric for Ray Kuan’s 80s pop-inspired creation, accented by metal studs and vibrant colors that bring the high-spirited fashion of the decade to life. Mary Ty’s design takes sartorial cues from the glamorous life on a cruise, creating an eyelet dupione top that is connected on both sides by pearl beads. She matches the top with a pair of short shorts that have circular details on the sides. It’s the 1950 pin-up girl’s style that Barbie Alvez brings to life with her Thai silk high-waisted shorts and cotton ruffled top, a fresh, kitschy take on resortwear. Inspired by African tribal patterns and body painting, John Herrera has created a cocktail dress with a flared silhouette, using turquoise pure silk set on a black base in duchess satin. Flattering on the female figure and undeniably a conversation starter, Herrera tops off the piece with a bolero jacket that can appropriately dial down the dress’s glamour when a more casual appeal is needed. Artist and designer Patty Eustaquio participates in Metrowear 100 with an outfit that she describes as “very London punk slash Roaring Twenties,” a glamorous yet still street-looking piece that combines a mix of natural fabrics with varying degrees of transparency. Combining frailty with steely determination in her Metrowear 100 piece, Rustan’s RTW designer Hindy Weber-Tantoco took inspiration from flowers, both in quality and in form, using silk chiffon that is burnt at the edges to resemble wilting flower petals. Weber-Tantoco created a warrior princess look that pitches frivolity together with strength, by way of leather stirrups that are worn on the legs. PJ Aranador’s Metrowear 100 design carries urban ethnic influences, with its Filipino “hablon” material, Indian style beadwork, Japanese prints, and Indonesian accents. Using hues of purple and indigo. It’s a walk down memory lane for James Reyes when he created his Italian taffeta, laminated satin and leather piece for the Metrowear 100. “I was imagining a walk down pre-war Escolta while hooked up to my iPod, listening to OPM rock,” he articulates. With the goal of making sportswear more versatile, Tina Lirag has created a piece that can fit right in on the track field, in the boardroom, and in the mall, using cotton knit in creating a shrug and a mini-dress that features her signature beadwork. Metrowear first-timer Jontie Martinez balances the soft fluidity of chiffon with the sleekness of black patent leather straps in an outfit worthy of the Greek goddess Athena, with tones of dark ochre, dull magenta, and black adding a regal, mysterious appeal to the piece. Amina Aranaz-Alunan’s five-piece accessories collection for Metrowear 100 takes style cues from the Spanish abanico, but has natural wood beads and mother of pearl components as the main materials. Shoe designer Joey Enriquez, on the other hand, used materials ranging from metallics to bright vinyls to diamond-studded logos on low-heeled slides in creating pieces that reflect the bright, shiny vibes of summer. Metrowear 100 also features the young talents of ABS CBN's Star Magic such as actresses Megan Young, Joyce So, Beauty Gonzalez, Nicole Uysiuseng, Krista Valle, Regine Angeles and Valeen Montenegro. These are just some of the highly inspired, intricately designed, and exquisitely cut creations that will light up the runway at the Samsung Metrowear Gala. “It once again proves how the country is brimming with talented individuals who are not only in-the-know but are also skillful, creative, and world-class,” affirms Holigores. Metro Magazine has been celebrating Philippine fashion and nurturing the growing numbers of brilliant fashion designers. This vision has led to Metrowear, widely recognized as one of the country’s most important fashion events which serve not just as a platform for Filipino talent, but also as a barometer for the bright kind of future awaiting Philippine fashion. Spinning the turntables tonight is DJ Anton Ramos. This event is sponsored by Samsung, Manila Hotel, Doublemint, Mikaela, L’Oreal Professionnel, San Miguel Light, and Havaianas.
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