Fashion resurrection

FINALLY, the real deal—an all Dabawenyo fashion designers show.

It’s been too long, perhaps more than a decade ago, since this kind of presentation took place in Davao. Whoever is the brainchild of this fashion weekend project, pushed the pencil and brought it to fruition deserves more than just applause.

The Fashion Weekend on its 3rd day presented the collections of PWC graduating class & faculty members.

Taking to the stage to present their forecasts—or perhaps the skill, strength or the signature look that made (and will make) these designers into clients’ favorites—were a coalition of emerging and established talents.

What interested me most was the batch on the last day of the event—the pick of the crop from the PWC Fine Arts and Design Program’s graduating class. Six of 12 senior students were selected to present a collection before an audience and a panel of judges, who selected the best designer of the year.

Creme de la creme. From the PWC graduating class, six were selected to compete for the title of 2016 Best Designenr award- Kim Granaba, Che Aranjuez, Goldie Siglos, Rhai Deiparine, Queeng Brunidor & Yana Alian. 

“As early as June 2015 the graduating class were tasked to come up with an inspiration with a research component based on Mindanao mythology and translate it to garments. The best ones will be showcased in a fashion show where one will be selected the winner. They will be mentored along the process,” said Emi Englis, an alumnus of PWC who sits as Program Chair for Fashion and Industrial Design.

Goldie Siglos’ UnD&C Collection

By November, the list was narrowed down to seven, who were asked to present two garments a week until December to complete a collection. After the faculty deliberated on the submissions, six made it to the final list: Goldie Siglos, Queeng Brunidor, Kim Ganaba, Yana Alian, Rhai Deiparine and Che Aranjuez.

Queeng Brunidor’s ten+taino Collection

On competition weekend, after defending their design thesis before a panel of judges that included prominent figures in Philippine fashion design and media, the collections were paraded on the ramp.

Rhai Deiparine’s Dolor Collection

The runway show was a peek at the future as couturiers. In a cohesive collection, they successfully exhibited their acquired knowledge of design and technique, pattern making, cutting and sewing, without discounting wearability and marketability.

Yana Alian’s EERIEsistible Collection

Kim Ganaba’s Noir et Noir Collection

These students will be exiting the institution with more than a diploma on hand but the prestige as well, especially for Che Aranjuez, whose “Nuptialem” collection won the coveted title of PWC Best Designer of the Year and the Best in Technique Award, while Queeng Brunidor won three awards including Best in Garment Construction and Rhai Deiparine won Best Motion Editiorial.

Che Aranjuez is PWC Best Designer of the Year. Her "Neptualem" collection was the judges' top choice.

The winner's Neptualem Collection

Designer Albert Andrada, contest judge, said, “I was amazed with their creations, construction and interpretation. They are very talented kids. The winner was my choice because of her construction, pattern manipulation and its very wearable.”


“Tonight, Che was the most connected to the point of view I was looking for. She manipulated the fabrics and did it in such a way that you could transform the clothes, and because of that it makes it wearable. People can wear it over and over again in different ways. That’s clearly why she won,” said fellow judge, Suki Salvador, Mega Magazine Creative Director.

The winner & the judges. Designer Alber Adrada, Nico Agustin of Men's Fashion Wweek, Suki Salvador of MEGA Magazine, Cathy Binag of Style & Design Academy, Che Aranjuez, Loris Pena of Preview Magazine, Zoe Laurente of StyleBible & Davao designers Xioti Chui & Aztec Barba.

Clearly, this is a sign that Davao fashion is resurrecting. It’s time to welcome the new breed of forward-thinking designers.

“The grad show, the kids, the way they think is very global. Some of the designs I feel can work in a different country,” shared Loris Pena, Preview Magazine’s Creative Fashion Editor.


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Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on March 27, 2016.