London was bedazzled, to say the least, when top Philippine Fashion Designers showcased the best of the Philippines in front of the royals and the movers and shakers of this cosmopolitan city. The Ayala Foundation together with the London-based organization Prospero World presented an ambitious philanthropic event dubbed “The London Philippine Fashion Show” to raise funds for the projects of Center of Excellence in Public Elementary Education or CENTEX at the historical Victoria House in London.
Guests present at the event were Crown Prince Pavlos of Greece and his lovely wife Princess Marie Chantal. Members of the organizing team were Mercedes Zobel and Gloal Foundation for Humanity founder Jacqueline de Chollet. Fernando Zobel de Ayala, president and chief operating officer of the Ayala Corporation welcomed the distinguished guests and organizers to the event and presented a brief but meaningful picture of the Philippines. He also stressed that any philanthropic support will best be maximized in areas of education, art and culture, environment and sustainable environment which are the core advocacies of Ayala Foundation.
Furthermore, Zobel de Ayala highlighted another important detail that evening beyond raising funds for CENTEX. “Tonight, we also present to you the creativity and craftmanship of Philippine Fashion Designers that is truly world class.” Zobel de Ayala declared with pride. The select-Filipino designers who participated at the event were jewelry and Fashion Accessory designers Wyn Wyn Ong, Joyce Makitalo and Celestina; fashion designers Cary Santiago, Michael Cinco, Josie Natori, Rajo Laurel, Frederico de Vera, Jasper Garvida, Jun Escario, Lulu Tan Gan, Mich Dulce and London-based designer Lesley Mobo.
Among all the participating designers only Wyn Wyn Ong, Lulu Tan Gan, Michael Cinco, Mich Dulce and Lesley Mobo made it to the event. “I felt so proud of being Filipino as I watched the works of our designers. Filipino talent is world-class!” Bea Zobel Jr. proudly declared after the show. Lulu Tan Gan and her daughter Jessica were to me the best dressed ladies of the evening. They were of course wearing their signature knitwear that creates a modern look of the Filipiniana. Michael Cinco and Cary Santiago’s haute couture collections were the crowd favorite. Princess Marie Chantal remembers vividly the details of Cinco’s white dresses and Santiago’s black column dresses when we had a short chat.
This event was indeed a triumph of the Filipinos in London. A true moment of Pinoy Pride in a global stage.
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