[box type=”default” size=”large”] It is a showcase of the best in PHL haute couture [/box]In two ways, it was a fashion show like no other.
First, it was held outdoor, and second, it was a showcase of the best in Philippine haute couture.
The fashion event was the highlight of the 2013 Thomasian Summer Fest, a fund-raiser organized by the University of Sto. Tomas Medical Alumni Association of Michigan (USTMAAM).
The rare fashion show was staged last August 10 at the spacious lawn of the summer residence of Drs. Jose and Stella Evangelista on Hawksmoore Drive, Clarkston, Michigan.
Some 300 USTMAAM members and their guests watched the show entitled “the evolution of the Filipino culture through music and dance.”
The outdoor stage was set at an area with tall trees and Lake Heather as the backdrop.
With top DJ Allen Carter providing Filipino-band music, the evening show opened with a parade of models wearing traditional Filipino outfits.
Dr. Lina Baraceros Bouffard, USTMAAM president, who served as master of ceremonies, gave the audience the historical and cultural significance of the dresses worn by the models.
The models were led by no less than Honorary Philippine Consul General Jose Evangelista and his wife, Dr. Stella Evangelista.
Stella was resplendent in a traditional Maria Clara complete with “panuelo” and “tapis.” Designed by Cora Manimbo, the dress was sewed and embroidered in the Philippines. The top portion was made of pina, while the skirt was made of abaca fiber with metallic threads.
The consul’s barong was made of Jean Goulbourn’s silk cocoon. The materials were hand-woven silk and pina fibers dyed black with frisson applique in the front panel.
The festival muse, 13-year-old Irina A. Angeles, was a picture of youth and innocence. She glowed in her modern Maria Clara gown designed by no less than Rene Salud, the Philippines’ top designer. Her green gown is mainly made of beaded light fabric (possibly chiffon). Irina is a daughter of Ferdie and Dr. Rose Aquiller Angeles.
Angela Bedia looked gorgeous in her dark-blue gown. Dr. Orlando Sison looked debonair in his colorful barong.
The other models, who included whole families with kids in tow, were also impressive in their traditional, iridescent Filipino attire.
Then came the amazing tribal portion.
It was opened by Dr. Ernie Mac, who sported a royal look in a traditional Muslim princess’s outfit designed by “our local talented Filipina designer Lavinia Mateo of Troy.”
Imelda Martin-Hum looked elegant and sexy in her tribal dress with mixed designs. The top portion was made of abaca fibers and designed by Nuevo Ystilo of Manila. The bottom portion was a creation of Shelli Segal of Los Angeles, California. It was Imelda herself who came up with the idea of mixing the designs.
The five candidates for Mrs. Philippines-Michigan 2013 were embodiments of native beauty in their tribal outfits, some with colorful headdresses.
The fashion show was made livelier with cultural dances presented by performers from the Philippine American Community Center (PACCM) and the Tagumpay Dance Ensemble. It was made more memorable by singer Mario Navallo who sang “Hindi Ka Malilimutan.”
Many of the guests visibly enjoyed the show which was produced by Toni Martinez. The dances were choreographed by Annabelle Cudilla.
The guests also enjoyed partaking different kinds of food, including succulent pork barbecue grilled on-site. Many took home some food as the food ordered was more than enough for the party-goers.
And there was a free bar that served wine and liquor such as Bailey’s and Hennessy.