Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Bensimon Manila, With Love From Paris

I'm not the usual sneaker type of person. I've been thinking of getting new ones, but I'm very picky with which ones to get because I still wanted to look more Parisian laid-back chic and less skater boy. So on the day French sneaker brand Bensimon invited a couple of stylists and bloggers over for its launch, I got excited about getting a new pair and thought I'd wear something youthful (what's more young-at-heart than a crop top?) and feminine (what's more girly than a voluminous skirt?) just to make sure I won't look like Avril Lavigne during her Skater Boi days*.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

This Home is Temporary

I haven't been posting updates as much as I should lately, because I've been busy preparing for something big... and I didn't want to talk about it until it's becoming really real (as in, not just in my head.) I'm going to New York next year!!!! :) I'll give more details about this in a separate post.

Now that I've gotten my visa -- yet another miraculous story waiting to be told -- my trip is all becoming a concrete reality. Yes, even after months of other people accepting that I'm going away and being very excited for me, I've just recently come to terms with it. So I finally contacted the broker my friend recommended me months ago and I told him what I was looking for. I was sitting on the floor of my walk-in closet (funnily, WiFi is limited to this area in my room), looking for apartments online when the realization hit me hard: my NY quarters -- bedroom, bathroom, kitchen and all -- will most likely be smaller than my current bedroom. Gasp. How spoiled of me, huh? What prompted this thought was counting all my blessings...

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

KC Concepcion for Axis Watches

It's pretty exciting to see one's work up in a billboard, even if it's... hmmm small compared to the humongous ones beside it. Was driving from home the other day -- in slow traffic -- and captured the work we did with KC Concepcion for Axis watches.

Hope you're having a great week!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Walking and Sewing and Praying

I know it's not a big deal to walk -- like, duh, people commute all the time -- but I've been so used to sitting a lot the past few weeks (in traffic too!) that I decided to take the physical and visual route to sewing class. I parked in SM Megamall, which was two blocks away.

Ten steps out of my car, I thought to myself, why on earth is my bag soooo heavy? Well, I better get used to walking and carrying loads of stuff as I prepare for a very exciting 2014! Thank you, Lord, for legs that can move and eyes that can see your goodness! These days, I keep on pushing myself to do things that are inconvenient or uncomfortable for me so I can move forward and upward. And yes, I talk to myself a LOT ;)

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Glitter, Lace, and Velvet -- A Personal Shopping Experience and A Lesson on Worry

I just got home from a personal shopping experience -- my first with someone who is not a friend or a family member -- and I'm blessed beyond words. This photo is just a sneak peek at what my bride Josephine bought for our prenup shoot scheduled later this week. Various textures such as glitter, lace, and velvet are really sexy despite the conservatively cut dresses that we chose.

I'm sharing this experience because this afternoon is an answered prayer, proof that my God, my Father, delights to bless those He calls His children.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Shopping Pink Manila

I've been very blessed to have a few of my own projects the past month, and one of them makes me really excited because it involves shopping! A month ago, I was invited to style for Pink Manila's online shop, pinkmanila.ph, and this time, I was invited to model -- faceless, as I prefer it ;p

New items are uploaded each week and an Instagram feed shows you how to wear pieces several ways. See you there! :)

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Sewing Classes

I have always enjoyed sewing class, whether it was by hand during Grade 4, doing running stitches and perfecting hem stitches, or in high school, on the slow-yet-relaxing old-fashioned pedal sewing machine. So after a decade or so since piecing together a garment project (no, spontaneous alterations behind the catwalk or at the TV studio don't count,) I finally signed up for sewing classes at FIP*.

Last Tuesday, as I bit on my tongue for three hours practicing stitches on line-covered paper, I marveled at how far God has brought me out of my comfort zone. Here I am, aged 29, starting from scratch yet again! And I am thankful that He gives me courage and the excitement every day to do things that push me to do new things, to learn, even though I sometimes feel (and undoubtedly look) a little foolish. He is my greatest encourager!

This is my command --
be strong and courageous!
Do not be afraid or discouraged.
For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.
Joshua 1:9

I am also grateful for the way He made me -- a planner. So while I do not have a clear vision of where He is taking me, I do plan for the short-term: I mark my calendar for the days I can spend in sewing class, being productive while I patiently -- and actively! -- wait for further direction from my Boss ;)

How has God been faithful in your life? I'd like to know! :)

*Fashion Institute of the Philippines has a branch in Ortigas at Unit 1603, One San Miguel Bldg., San Miguel Ave. cor. Shaw Boulevard, Mandaluyong City.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Everything "Falls" into Place

This is my assurance, that however foolish and stubborn I can be sometimes a lot of times -- and there will be consequences for sure -- "God works all things together for the good of those who love Him, who are called according to His purpose." Romans 8:28.

I've found that the "right place" is not a far-off destination; it's a choice to be grateful for the now, and an active hope that God works everything for the best. :) I'm excited for the unknown because of what is known: that God is with me always.

Have a blessed week ahead, everyone!

Friday, September 20, 2013

Collection I Love: Fendi Spring/Summer 2014

What comes to your mind when you hear layers and fur? It sounds a lot like winter, right?

I thought so too. Until I saw Fendi's collection for Spring/Summer 2014. This beautiful sheer coat with geometric panels beautifully reveals the geometric blouse and skirt underneath. Believe me when I say I drooled over it.

But wait, there's more!

Monday, September 9, 2013

No, You Don't Look Fat in That!!! Women's Health September 2013 Fashion Editorial

It's a funny title, but at least once in a woman's life, she longs to hear those words. One of my favorite projects to work on are fashion editorials that cater to "real women" (i.e. not skinny models; people who have non-fashion 9-5 jobs that require a dress code) because after all, fashion should still make sense in daily life, right? This editorial  is meant to bust the myths associated with clothes that supposedly make one look bigger, such as:

1) Shapeless dresses
If you have a straight body, chances are you'll look like a) a stick or b) a blob in a solid-colored colored straight-cut dress. What to do? Choose one that has a fun print like this one. The chevron print elongates the body and moves the eye to where the dress hugs the wearer's curves, aided by the stretchy material.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Jodi Sta. Maria and Thirdy for Magnolia Fruit Drink TVC

Mommies know well enough that kids need their energy to cope with their multiple activities. Jodi and Thirdy share their secret to a masiglang (energetic) kid -- Magnolia Fruit Drink. I caught the commercial airing on TV while having lunch at home with my family.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Yes! Magazine's 100 Most Beautiful 2013 -- BTS with Ricky Davao

There's really not much else to prove when you're Ricky Davao. Not even to prove he deserves to be in this year's list of 100 Most Beautiful. It was so easy to work with the TV veteran whose career spans decades.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Yes! Magazine's 100 Most Beautiful 2013 -- BTS with Dennis Trillo and Diana Zubiri

I had so much fun styling for Dennis Trillo and Diana Zubiri last month, the last two shoots produced by Irene Mislang and art directed by Noel Azcueta for the Yes! special feature just a few days before it went to press. Talk about cutting it close ;)

The special feature is fronted by Kathryn Bernardo and Julia Montes. I can't say I'm surprised as these two's careers have been steadily rising this year.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

How to Live a Creative Life

I've been waking up early yesterday and today, excited to work despite the weather. But since the torrential rains refuse to let up, it's so tempting to just sleep all day (I admit to taking a few naps here and there) and nestle back into a sedentary mindset.

I thought of posting the Holstee Manifesto as a little inspiration for myself. You might like it too!

Taken from Brain Pickings

Have a beautiful day indoors, Manila!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Spotted Again: Jodi Sta. Maria for Purefoods Fun Stuff Nuggets

There's nothing like being stuck in traffic on a weeknight when all you want to do is get to where you're headed... and on a grumbling, empty stomach too! Last night, this billboard made me forget my hunger for a few minutes as it literally lit up my view high above the Metro Manila traffic.

This one is standing on Kalayaan Ave. just as you enter from EDSA and slowly, slowly inching your way to C5. For once, I'm glad traffic was slow so I could snap a photo.

Happy midweek, everyone!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Aeropostale Comes To Manila! Aeropostale Fashion Show

This post is long overdue as Aeropostale launched in Manila with its fashion show at the Glorietta Activity Center last June 19 -- eep, that's two months ago! The vibe was fun, colorful, fresh, and YOUNG. See all these energetic youths sashaying down the runway? It's a combination of professional models as well as student ambassadors the brand handpicked from different universities.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Dressing Kris Bernal for Contract Signing with Avon

If it's anything I noticed the past few weeks -- and I can be pretty dense when it comes to what I see on TV -- Avon ads have been popping up here and there on primetime TV. So when Sidney told us we'll be styling the very pretty Kris Bernal for her official contract signing with Avon, I was thrilled we'd be part of the activities of a global brand, albeit being behind the scenes!

Speaking of behind the scenes...

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Jodi Sta. Maria for Purefoods Fun Stuff Nuggets

Aaaaand it's out! I've been passing by the Purefoods Fun Stuff billboards we worked on featuring Jodi Sta. Maria and her precocious, active son Thirdy. I took this one along Quezon Avenue this afternoon.

Sidney and I enjoyed sourcing the outfits for this ad as the client specified the use of bright colors. For Thirdy, we picked a wide-stripe colored shirt and red-orange shorts while we chose a dress in teal for Jodi. Everything had to be approved by the client and agency first, of course.

In case you're wondering, Jodi's beautiful make-up was done by the talented Krist Bansuelo. I really can't help but stare at her on this billboard; you might even call it a girl-crush! I must say, having worked with Jodi for several projects now, her inner beauty is lovelier than what you see onscreen or on print. Her kindness, humor, and professionalism are just some characteristics I admire about her.

Have a blessed week ahead, everyone!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Look What I Spotted Again...

It's Michael V and his Buscopan bus ads! There's not a week that goes by without me seeing one of these when I drive on EDSA.

Buscopan... Tiyan ka magaling! I've heard from my brother that Buscopan works wonders for stomach cramps. Hmmmm. I should try it out when I need it instead of the current alternative, which is writhing in pain in bed ;p

Thursday, July 25, 2013

G2000 Grand Launch in Manila, Opens at Shangri-La East Wing

It's not everyday I can attend a brand or store launch as a guest. Usually, Sidney and I are working backstage for the fashion show or tied up at another shoot and have to skip the launch altogether. So when Robinsons Specialty Stores told me about the G2000 launch that was held last Tuesday, I was happy to tell our contact I could make it! :)

Back when I was in the corporate world, I wouldn't skip a visit to G2000 whenever my family and I went to Hong Kong. I would be mesmerized by the well-cut blazers, vibrant cardigans, and crisp dress shirts that I ended up buying more than what was on my shopping list. I like the brand because it is well-made and a fraction of the price of European brands Mango and Zara, where I also shop.

Photo from Inside Retail Asia
Fast forward to five years since I stepped in a G2000 store and it's now on Manila shores, thanks to Robinsons Specialty Stores. Founded in 1980 by Michael Tien, G2000 now operates about 700 stores worldwide. With Hong Kong so near us, it's about time it came here, don't you think?? ;)

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Marjorie Barretto on Smart Parenting July 2013 Cover

I am loving the aquas, blues, and violets on this cover. Last month, we shot Marjorie Barretto, her lovely daughter Claudia (also called Clau-ee), and her exceptionally witty son Leon for the July cover of Smart Parenting.

There is a funny story behind this cover photo and several others throughout the shoot...

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Sister Act: Toni and Alex Gonzaga on Women's Health July 2013 Cover

It's finally mid-year and I'm ticking off things I planned in January, one of which is to work with well-known siblings Toni and Alex Gonzaga. Woohoo! Thank you, God!

This issue sells FLAT SEXY ABS in big bold letters. Well, if anyone can sell that, it would be these two very slim siblings!

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Hi, Michael V!

It's funny that whenever I see an ad we've worked on, I just talk to the material (billboard, bus ad, TV commercial) as if I were talking to the real person. I've been seeing these buses the past few weeks and I couldn't resist taking a photo while I could reasonably maneuver through traffic.

By the way, chasing down a bus is a great way of killing boredom while driving ;p

Have a blessed weekend, everyone!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Busog ka pa tiyan? Mag-Buscopan! with Michael V (Also the Launch of My TV Modeling Career)

It's not everyday that I get to meet one of TV's most hilarious people. Not only that, one of TV's wittiest, most intelligent.

A few months ago, Sidney and I had the privilege of working with Michael V for his endorsement of Buscopan, which relieves stomach cramps.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Color My Rainy Day

If you've been hiding under a rock, it may be time to let you know that the rainy season has started for the year! Which means, it's also the time to talk about rain gear.

A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of talking about Ready for Rain on TV5's Good Morning Club, which airs 5:00-8:00 AM on Mondays to Fridays. I guested with other business owners of rain-ready products, one, a distributor of umbrellas, and another a maker of hoodie bags. I observed that the time we set up looks more convincing for a rainy day story than the actual time we did our interview, but more on that later.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Sunshine Cruz and Daughters Angelina, Sam, and Cheska on the Cover of Working Mom June 2013

Styling can be humbling, but it is also very rewarding. One of my most rewarding shoots is this month's cover of Working Mom, featuring Sunshine Cruz and her lovely daughters Angelina, Sam, and Cheska.

For us stylists, every shoot is a magic act waiting to unfold. Even after several days of preparations and planning, the shoot day itself can throw some curve balls. Fortunately, we did our proper research to ensure we had the correct sizes.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

A Happy Wrong Turn -- 555 Tuna Outdoor Ads Starring Robin Padilla and Cristine Reyes

I made a wrong turn the other day.

From Tomas Morato area, I was supposed to head to SM North EDSA. It's a scientific fact that ladies are not as good as men when it comes to mapping directions in one's head, and although there are exceptionally good women drivers and navigators, I am not one of them. I need to use Google Maps everyday even to places where I've been before! Haha. So anyway, I thought I'd be able to make a U-turn on EDSA following a right turn from Kamuning. Nuh-uhhhh. I followed the traffic flow all the way to Cubao and made the nearest U-turn at Aurora Boulevard.

Did I get upset by my ineptness that led to the detour? Yes. For a little while. Until I saw this...

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Jodi Sta. Maria on Women"s Health May 2013 Cover

Forgot to upload this one we recently worked on. Grab a copy now!

Jodi is wearing a blue asymmetric swimsuit from Karimadon and white jeans from Levi's.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Preparations for Stradivarius Fashion Show -- Individual Looks

Because I don't have photos of individual outfits from the Stradivarius fashion show I wrote about in my last post, I'll show some of the looks here.

This is what I wore on the day we prepared the 45+ looks needed for the show.

To get into the mood of our projects, I try as much as possible to dress according to the occasion and theme. I wanted to get into the desert chic groove with a sleeveless crochet top, olive green pants, lightweight feathered earrings, snakeskin cuff, and olive ballet flats. I even wore my hair in a side braid, which took me thirty minutes to do on my own -- a herculean effort for someone who forgets to comb her hair ;p

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Stradivarius S/S'13 Fashion Show

The fast pace, the adrenaline, the need to dress all fifteen models (with 3 changes each!) and have their hair, make-up, clothes, accessories, complete look ready all by a certain time -- is just crazy. But then when all the dust has settled and I watch the fashion show, I feel a different kind of high, a type that takes around three to four hours to wear off on me. (I suppose it's because I'm an introvert so being with so much people and energy elevates my stress levels higher than it would others.)

I didn't realize how long I kept my stomach in until I let a breath out during the models' third look on their final walk ;)

Last April 10, it was a joy to witness and assist Sidney in successfully planning and dressing forty-five looks plus others -- the host and the DJs -- for a Spanish-gone-global brand that has newly arrived on Philippine shores -- Stradivarius. I've been salivating over the brand when I travel abroad, and I'm glad it's finally here! Best of all, we get to work directly with the brand. What a privilege!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Levi's Accessories S/S 2013

Styling for a well-known brand such as Levi's (even if "only" for the accessories line) is a big responsibility, and I'm very grateful to my friend James for trusting me with the task. Our photographer and dear friend Bliss also gave me a lot of encouragement. These ads were shot two months ago at a friend's lumber yard, with this one as my favorite:

A few weeks before this shoot, my mind was filled with worries on whether I'd ever have my own styling projects, on what my career path would be, on what I'd be doing for the rest of the year and the next five years. Talk about a worrywart! When God assures me with His promise "I have plans for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future" in Jeremiah 29:11, He doesn't give me a timeline. There is no five-year plan, actionable items, and goals. I simply need to trust Him and His timing. Of course I have to do my part too! But I'm not going to worry about every little detail of my life.

Because I know God led me to this occupation, I resolved to let go of my anxious thoughts and busied myself with work. Then one day, out of the blue, Bliss asked me if I were free to do a shoot with Levi's accessories. Of course I said yes!

Monday, May 6, 2013

Lea Salonga and Daughter Nicole on the Cover of Working Mom May 2013

I shrieked when Sidney told me the news. "We're styling your idol this weekend."

Lea Salonga of Miss Saigon and Les Miserables fame, Disney princess, and international star. I was both excited and slightly daunted to meet her.

Unfortunately, I wasn't able to go to the shoot as it was moved a few days later, when I had already left with my family for our vacation during Holy Week :( Still, I'm looking forward to working with her in future shoots!

Saturday, May 4, 2013

555 Tuna TV Commercial Starring Robin Padilla and Cristine Reyes

One of the more exciting moments in a stylist's life is when the ad we worked on finally comes out! Often, being busy with work is a blessing because we don't feel the long wait before we see the final product after all the edits, client approvals, ad permits, etc. I squealed when I saw this TV ad with my family during one night we were watching the evening news.

Rachelle Que and I teamed up to assist Sidney in styling Robin Padilla for his endorsement of 555 Tuna with Cristine Reyes, who was styled by Em Millan. The costume requirement for Robin was a rugged vest, which we cut up from a long-sleeved cotton twill shirt, and worn-in jeans.

Do you see the storm clouds??

As with TV commercial tapings, we had an early call time and as Rach and I drove to Alabang, we kept on wondering, "Are we seriously pushing through with taping today???" Don't get me wrong -- I wasn't complaining, as I've been on outdoor sets in worse conditions (Typhoon Ofel last October), but bad weather does cause major delays for production and we wanted to be 100% sure we weren't traveling at that early hour just for the whole thing to be called off. It had been raining on and off since the day prior, and the bosses almost did. Thankfully, God cleared the skies a few hours after we arrived, when everything was all set up.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

In a few weeks...

A magazine cover with a gorgeous mom and her three beautiful daughters, from L-R: Cheska, Sam, and Angelina.

These little ladies are as lovely on the inside as they are on the surface. Soft-spoken, well-mannered, and friendly, they were such a joy to dress up today. Can't wait to see the final output :)

Psalm 133
How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity!
It is like precious oil poured upon the head, running down on the beard,
running down on Aaron's beard, down upon the collar of his robes.
It is as if the dew of Hermon were falling on Mount Zion.
For there the Lord bestows his blessings, even life forevermore.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Rissa Mananquil Trillo and Baby Celestia on Working Mom April 2013 Cover

Super-sexy teen-and-baby momma Rissa Mananquil Trillo graces this month's cover of Working Mom with her daughter Celestia.

It's not difficult to make a model look amazing; Rissa takes great care of her skin and body so everything just looks amazing on her!  Mental note to self while styling this shoot: must begin and continue exercising* so I'll look great before AND after having kids. Haha!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

A Little Nugget of Wisdom from It Takes a Man and a Woman

Disclaimer: this is not a movie review :)

Okay, call me whatever you want, but I watched It Takes a Man and a Woman starring John Lloyd Cruz and Sarah Geronimo yesterday. In the name of research, you understand ;) In my line of work, I need to constantly update myself about pop culture and potential/current clients' recent movies or projects. Of course, I was also curious about the costumes, and how the outfits represent the characters*, and other such details.

The storyline wasn't as solid as I'd like it to be, but I found a surprising nugget of wisdom in the speech given by Miggy Montenegro's (John Lloyd's character) late father. Paraphrased, his character says that in the quest for being the best, we forget how to be good, which is ultimately more important. This struck a nerve because I've recently been wanting to do more in my career in the near future, and I've had several opportunities to advance it but at the expense of integrity. This is going to be a long post, so you can leave while you can. ;)

Friday, March 15, 2013

Pia Guanio and Baby Scarlet on Smart Parenting March 2013 Cover!

Another cover Sidney styled this month is Smart Parenting, featuring the lovely Pia Guanio and her adorable daughter Scarlet. The pair was such a breeze to work with and the shoot went by so quickly, I barely had time to take a breath.

As a stylist, it's my job to get everyone dressed on time, in the right order (when there's more than one person in the frame and only one dressing room), to minimize delays to the shoot, which may include making the talents comfortable and at ease. One thing I picked up from styling is that there's no time for fear. Had I all the time in the world to make SWOT analyses, I probably wouldn't have the courage to hold a baby, much less change her clothes. I've always been afraid to hold babies during shoots in case I made them cry -- another reason to blame me for cause of delay! Eeek.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Feature in Chalk March 2013 Issue

Who would have ever thought I'd be featured in a magazine? And a magazine for the youth to boot, in particular, college students*! It's been awhile since I graduated from university, but as I pored over the March issue of Chalk magazine, it reminded me of how much I didn't know back then and what I'd give for advice like this. Well, I admit there's still a LOT I still don't know ;p But that's beside the point.

Featuring Maja Salvador on the cover, this month's Chalk provides an inside look at dream jobs, careers, and the "real world" -- all practical issues that college students and graduates must think about ever so often.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

The Things Bianca Loves

With February as the month of love, it's not surprising to have a few shoots revolving the subject matter. A few weeks ago, Sid had a shoot for Ava.ph, an online retailer for premium, curated items. We had a lot of fun dressing Bianca Gonzales. Breezy, fuss-free, and positive, she is such a charming personality on- and off-camera. Below is a screenshot of Ava's landing page, now up! (Which means I get to post photos and blog about it already. Hihi.)

Here are some more photos from our afternoon shoot...

Monday, February 11, 2013

The Glamour of Styling

Most people outside the fashion industry think it's such a glamorous job to be surrounded by excellent, creative professionals and drop-dead-gorgeous models, but there's more to the beautifully-produced final product than meets the eye. It's a lot of hard work, as you can see from this photo, which I still find absolutely hilarious ;p

I had just finished packing all our stuff from our day-long shoot, and this was my second trip to the car. After all the glitter has settled and the beautiful people gone, we stylists are usually the last on set to clean up, pack up, and wheel (or sometimes grunt) our way out. Haha. It's not very ladylike to grunt so I've trained myself to reduce it to deep breathing.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Marian Rivera on Women's Health Philippines January/February 2013 Cover!

It's my first time to work with Marian Rivera, and I was surprised to see that she's petite; I thought she was more my size/height.

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