What They Wanted

Modern women after easy dressing, relaxed fit, clean lines, classic cuts made fresh with embellishments using indigenous weaves. They believed that simple dressing can be extraordinary. They knew that there is a causal way of promoting culture through versatile every day wear that can take them from meetings to dinners and they can effortlessly pack for travel. They wanted a social enterprise that would support local weavers, utilize Filipino dressmakers and provide livelihood in impoverished grassroots communities.

They thought of their friends, their family, their various networks and even their own needs. Coming from political families, they are invited to frequent functions which require Filipiniana attire. Creating their own modern Filipiniana line would make dressing up much easier!

They started with Yakan and Tausug weaves from the Zamboanga Peninsula. It was an advantage that Looie’s family is from Zamboanga City where there is a Yakan Village in Upper Calarian, around 7 kilometers from the city center. There are a number of families who live there, weave with their hand-looms and sell their beautiful artistry of unique, bold, colorful and intricate hand-woven fabrics. The Yakan people are an indigenous Muslim tribe originally from Basilan. Their designs are predominantly geometric and follow symmetrical patterns. Inspiration for patterns is drawn from nature and island living.

Her late grandmother, Maria Clara “Caling” Lorenzo Lobregat, was known as a charismatic woman who was fearless and action oriented and fondly remembered for her fashionable “sayas” which she wore almost everyday. She kept culture alive through her wardrobe which she generously shared with women who liked them. Caling was a fan of Yakan weaves and other local fabrics too!

Sewers in Payatas, Quezon City, lovingly make the packaging of their products.  That’s just a start. Joy’s advocacy includes supporting livelihood programs to uplift communities as well as improve the welfare of women and children among other things and she hopes to also do that through this business venture.