I COULD already sense the vigor of Dexter Alazas from the otherend of our phone interaction six hours prior to sending out working women to the runway.
“I practically coined the term for lack of a better word,” he replied of his new collection he titled “Hablon Nuevo.”
He continued: “This collection is a homageto women and feminism, empowered ladies who have a voice, interpreted in flowers and orchids and a melange of colors.
It’s also a tribute to my mom Flora Alazas for inspiring me as well to follow my vision.
The story revolves around the same passion for local fashion, developing the materials and innovating them slowly
to create our very own signature fabric.
The collection is neither a trend nor a forecast. It’s about slowly making a statement on its own.”
While the Alazas matriarch did not appear at the show “Fete de la Fleur” (flower festival) at The Gallery of Ayala Center Cebu, 20 members of the JCI-Zugbuana interpreted his vision on May 19, a Saturday evening.
Directed by Monch Ceballos, the occasion was divided into two segments: the solo acts and the mother-and-child portion where a twinning concept came to life.
Breaking through the garden-type stage landscaped by Jaime Chua, Christelle Dychangco opened it with a sleek metallic blazer, matching a flared, wide-legged pair of pants.
It was the same leg room applied to the ensemble seen on Arlene Go,a strong contrast with what Margaux Caya delivered in
public: a weaved sack dress with tiny fringes at the hemline, styled with a sash.
Interior designer Holly Dawn Dychangco annotated the flow of the girls, wearing a floral printed asymmetrical doll dress.
Jewelry designer Jeanne Arra Angbetic was arresting in shades of violet—corset top, palazzo pants—but her smile was her
best accessory. In a dress with a slit wide enough to expose a finetailored pants, Casey Ngo’s turn was as unforgettable, too.
May Joan Abellana wore a mint green blouse with contrasting textures on the oversized lapel, a weaved apple green belt with floral embroidery, styled with purple palazzo pants.
Haidee Benedicto-Barcelon, along with her two daughters, proved that red is a strong choice of color, and she knew how to tame it on stage.
Rachel Duerme’s shape was highlighted with a corset-type sleeveless top.
“In keeping up with my advocacy to support sustainable fashion,
I use our very own ‘Hablon de Cebu’—locally handwoven fabrics in cotton blended with metallic thread insertions and pairing it with stretch silks and satins for comfort and wearability.
I made a point to throw in a variety of silhouettes, from body hugging numbers to loose and easy pieces to create a more contemporary and customized feel to it,” the fashion designer explained.
Color me garden—a splash of color derived from orchids that he brought indoor nature into bloom.
He defined: “Flowers are the best exemplified by their natural shades and hues that somehow reflect individuality and femininity.”
But glamour is only a tiny parcel compared to the heart of their intentions.
Alazas shared his projection in the next few months, saying: “It’s actually a subtle campaign to launch the Cebu silk pitch, which aims to promote a startup plan of silk worm breeding and mulberry trees farming in Cebu.
My personal mission-vision for 2020 with the help of JCI Zugbuana is to push the Cebu fashion industry to move further than just being creative but innovative.”