They say it’s best to start them young, which is exactly what Awit at Laro aims to accomplish with its upcoming fashion show that will highlight local designers’ creations made for the younger generation.
The show, dubbed Baro at Sayá, which will be held at the Grand Hyatt Manila in BGC on September 22, will be headlined by Len Cabili, Ito Curata, Rhett Eala, Zarah Juan, Marga Nograles’ Kaayo, Anne Marie Saguil, Paloma Zobel’s PioPio. It will be led by Rajo Laurel who also serves as overall fashion consultant for the project.
Baro at Sayá is the follow up to Awit at Laro, which was spearheaded by UNICEF Ambassador Gary Valenciano and Tukod Foundation’s Bambi Mañosa-Tanjutco to promote Filipino culture and celebrate the spirit of play by reintroducing traditional games to the youth through music and the arts.
This year, the campaign brings innately Filipino elements to the catwalk, where featured designers draw inspiration from the Awit at Laro songs to create modern outfits using ethnic designs and weavings set against the backdrop of Filipino traditional games and Original Pilipino Music.
“You can expect to see fun, playful, and beautiful creations that go across generations. We are working with extremely talented designers whose inspiration runs deep. They create not only for themselves but to help inspire and uplift the Filipino people in more ways than one,” enthuses project head Kat Mañosa.
She adds, “We are also working with families to be our ambassadors to help represent what the Baro at Sayá fashion show represents. Families that also want to give back to our communities and to our children.”
Laurel’s collection has an element of play. He shares, “I actually made my own fabric for the collection and asked my nephews and nieces to help. One weekend I brought some fabric and paint and we just had a blast. I wanted to truly incorporate the sense of play in the collection and what better way to do this than by literally playing with my nieces and nephews. It was fun!”
His fellow designers who are participating in the event are equally as excited to showcase Filipino culture through fashion and play.
Cabili will highlight her children’s line, saying that the revival of games we grew up with is something close to her heart. “The theme is really unique and fun, we focused on our core competencies and found a way to relate it to the whole thrust of the project,” she shares.
The project brought back childhood memories and the moments Curata spent playing with his son. “It brought out so many emotions in me, and I was challenged because designing with a Filipino game in mind brought me out of my design comfort zone.”
Eala, meanwhile, will show off the stately side of Filipiniana. “Our pieces combine several fabrics and techniques of embroidery to highlight our mixed cultures, making you stand out. Each piece was made to reflect the rich culture that we represent made wearable and relatable for the modern woman,” he explains.
Juan, who likewise experienced the joy of play, turns to playing piko with her team for inspiration. “This collaboration is a celebration of who we are as Filipinos. It is deeply rooted to our culture and heritage which makes it inspiring and exciting.”
Nograles, for her part, will highlight the traditional weaves in her work. “We took inspiration and put together our favorite weaves that represented Filipino song and play. Then we mixed some hand beading and embroidery by the indigenous tribes that we work with and topped it off with fun Filipino accessories. Each piece we will present will tell a fun and unique story,” she promises.
It’s embroidered wearable art that Saguil will set out on the runway, she says, as her part in empowering the Filipino people through art, craftsmanship, culture, and sustainability.
“The design process for the collection was quite different and a lot of fun for me because childhood, fun, and play was the central theme for the clothes’ colors and silhouettes. As a result, the collection took on a younger playful vibe but still always suitable for the adult modern Filipina,” shares Saguil.
For Zobel’s PioPio, the collection is all about the Filipino family. “We thought it would be fun to include the Mañosas, our brand ambassadors, in all stages of this project. By allowing our brand ambassadors to help in the designing process, from picking fabrics to designing their dream outfits, we carried through this theme of getting back in touch with our roots and using art and creativity to help bond families and friends.”
The September show is a fundraiser for UNICEF, Museo Pambata’s renovation project, and Tukod Foundation’s “Pamato sa Pagtuturo” Awit at Laro workshops for teachers.
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