The hands of interior designer Earl Gariando work as many wonders as his mind. And his feet have brought his bid to walk the global path through the country’s premier trade event, Manila FAME.
Debuting his Repoussé Series of wearable art at the Manila Wear section of the recent Manila FAME, Gariando wasted no time driving attention where it mattered the most – to his exceptionally adroit bags and accessories. His dexterous hands and imaginative mind shone even brighter than the brass and pearls he fancifully put together to break through the fashion world.
In an exhibit featuring 60 designers, Gariando had to stand out. It was his first time at Manila FAME and his grand entrance to its 10th edition of Manila Wear cannot be all too subtle. While metal and natural minerals are source materials typically found together in furniture, Gariando made them a combination to behold in fashion pieces. With his arms of choice, brass, copper, pearls and semiprecious stones, he knew the royal feeling had to be a sense shared between him and his prospective buyers.
Gariando found the red carpet in the ancient technique of repoussé or a method of shaping malleable metal into decorative objects by hitting from the front and back sides. Innovation had him tooling metal and encrusting them with fresh water pearls to make clutch bags, hand bags, and cigarette boxes. With this comes the feeling of playing an old southern monarch. His necklaces are made of molded brass ornaments and chains with either an antique gold or a lacquer finish. Having these are like wearing the rich culture of the indigenous people T’Boli and the freshness of orchids from Mindanao. How the baroque architecture of ancient churches can be a reference for contemporaneous creativity was also in charming display with Gariando’s pouches and utilitarian purses.
Earl Gariando hails from Tacloban City, a province otherwise known for its cataclysmic typhoon history but one that birthed a dreamer who came out with a profound appreciation for the Philippines’ natural resources to build his artistic inspirations upon. Enriching experience upon enriching experience, he had hammered himself, like his repoussé creations, into a craftsman who has taken metal and gems to compelling reaches of artisanal design.
Manila Wear is a branding initiative under Fashion Philippines that aims to develop the Philippine fashion industry into a globally competitive industry. It is one of the trade show highlights of Manila FAME – the country’s premier design and lifestyle event showcasing craftsmanship, design innovation, and artisanship in Philippine products. Manila FAME is organized by the Philippine Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), through the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM).