France And The Philippines Celebrated 75 Years Of Friendship With A Star-Studded Gala And Fashion Show

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Five designers debuted an exclusive 30-piece collection featuring their star-studded muses.

The 25th edition of the French Film Festival in Manila opened recently, coinciding with the 75th anniversary of diplomatic relations between France and the Philippines. Hosted by the French Chamber of Commerce and Industry in the Philippines (FCCIP), it culminated in a Gala Night on October 22 at Raffles and Fairmont in Makati.

Attendees of the gala drew together award-winning actress Isabelle Huppert and Emily In Paris star Lucas Bravo, as well as French Ambassador to The Philippines and Micronesia Michèle Boccoz. Dinner featured a collaborative menu between chefs Alain Passard and Jessie Sincioco.

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There is, perhaps, no better way to encapsulate our two distinct cultures than through the narrative of fashion. For the night’s main event, five designers were brought together to feature exclusive capsule collections worn by their muses, in partnership with Jewelmer. “The pieces were our own interpretation of the show’s theme of famous coastlines in Brittany, France,” designer Patty Ang, who participated in the show, tells Vogue Philippines. The designers used a combination of natural fibers and textures to accentuate their silhouettes. The French-Filipino jewelry company provided pearls for the models to wear.

See the fashion designers who were tapped for the glamorous celebration below:

Albert Andrada

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Albert Andrada is famous for creating opulent dresses for illustrious clients, including Arab royalty and the likes of Paris Hilton. The Design Council Head of Miss Universe Philippines also often dresses local beauty queens, having made the blue gown Pia Wurtzbach wore during her win in 2015.

For this collection, his current muse and 2022 Miss Philippines representative Celeste Cortesi strutted the runway in a glistening metallic copper gown. Andrada followed with a combination of men’s looks that combined salmon fabric with the same metallic copper and concluded with a gown and red-tiered tulle cape.

Mark Bumgarner

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Mark Bumgarner, who has dressed the likes of acclaimed Aishwarya Rai and heiress Victoria Swarovski, showed an elegant collection of black, white, and pink gowns. His muses included 2015 Binibining Pilipinas Intercontinental winner Christi McGarry, who walked the runway in a full black and pink gown with terno sleeves, and actress Pamela Prinster, who wore a dress with a pink ruffled top and sleek black skirt.

Others who walked wore a combination of silk rosettes, tweed, and feathers. They accessorized with both white and gold pearls.

Maureen Disini

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Former magazine editor turned designer Maureen Disini stepped out in a range of silver and gray dresses in brocade and tulle that alluded to various eras in french style. Her muse was singer-songwriter, Claudia Baretto, who stepped out in a strapless sterling gown and string of pearls around her neck. Other looks featured a variety of gold pearl brooches, earrings, and rings.

Patty Ang

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Designer Patty Ang sent five examples of understated elegance down the runway. Her muse, model and lifestyle personality Mikaela Lagdameo, wore a shimmering black beaded bandeau and straight-cut skirt. Her other models wore sleek gowns with blue gradients melding into black, accentuated with rosettes, and a simple strapless cocktail dress beaded with pearls. Ang’s last look was a draped emerald green gown with a cape. The models wore statement necklaces with large Jewelmer pearls.

Rajo Laurel

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Fashion designer and TV personality Rajo Laurel showcased several artfully draped crinkle-pleated gowns in various tie-dye hues of blues, greens, and yellows. His muses included Binibining Pilipinas Elda Louise Aznar, Binibining Pilipinas International Hannah Consencino Arnold, Miss Eco Teen International Tatyana Alexi Austria, and model Taki Yoneyama. Each of them wore a string of gold South Sea pearls around their heads in various combinations. 

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