Tuesday, June 10, 2014


By Eva Fydrych

Opening Night

Photos by Eva Fydrych / Fashion Studio Magazine (Click to enlarge)

TORONTO - The opening night of Canada Philippine Fashion Week was a perfect mix of fashion, music, and networking. The event took place yesterday at the elegant Shangri-La Grand Ballroom where guests were treated to Tepiña* fashion show and could enjoy wine, cocktails and delicious cupcakes on the hotel's terrace.

There was something for the textile lovers too. HABI: A Journey Through Philippine Handwoven Textiles exhibition featured nine panels of colourful textiles that represented the different weaving communities from around the Philippines.

Save the date! (Photos by Eva Fydrych / Fashion Studio Magazine)

Cupcakes by Deeh's Delights were disappearing quickly...

One of our favourite textiles

Fashionable yellow - perfect summer look

Beautiful gown by Francis Libiran (Photos by Eva Fydrych / Fashion Studio Magazine)


*Tepiña fabric is made with the fibers from the leaves of the Philippine pineapple, which is found growing on the Palawan Island.

Tepiña is a lightweight, natural, fine fiber yet it is also known for its tensile strength. It may be hand painted, embroidered, dyed and customized to create unique combination weaves. (You can read more about Philippine textiles below.)

See you at the Thomson Hotel Rooftop party tonight!

Official Schedule


HABI: A Journey Through Philippine Handwoven Textiles

The exhibit will take you through the Philippine textile landscape by featuring hand woven fabric from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. Showcasing textiles and products that use traditional techniques from sustainable communities, social enterprises and established handicraft stores in the Philippines, it aims to promote available hand woven textiles from different areas. The exhibit is a collection of the Philippines’ most striking textiles found in the book HABI: A Journey Through Philippine Hand Woven Textiles. Published by HABI: the Philippine Textile Council, the book was launched in Manila last January 2014. It is the first directory of weavers and shops selling textiles. The exhibit is curated to display the different textiles and their points of origin from the North to the South of the Philippine archipelago. All items on exhibit will be available for sale. 

The exhibit will juxtapose contemporary handwoven textiles with traditional weaving, presenting a picture of diversity across the country.

Inabel Iloko 

Derived from the root word abel, which is weave in Ilocano. These textiles hail from the provinces of Abra, Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur and La Union. Originally woven in endemic cotton, the uses of fabric range from clothing, blankets, sail-cloths and other household products.

The whirlwind “kusikos” pattern of the Binakul fabric is often described as “op-art” because of the optical illusion of movement created by its dizzying design. This design represents the motion of the wind. Traditionally it is used by the lowlanders as sails, but favored by the upland groups for rituals. The kusikos is a representation of the creator of the world.

The Pinilian is characterized by elaborate brocade weaves depicting every day life in the region. The patterns feature stylized geometric figures like leaves, flowers, crabs, horses, and human forms. These fabrics are traditionally woven for blankets and bed covers. They are symbols of high status.

The Rayadillo is striped fabric traditionally used for sturdy clothings. The soldiers of the Philippine revolution used these as uniforms.

Cordillera Weaves

Though the textiles of the Cordillera have similar patterns to that of the Inabel Iloko, the colors and embellishments are distinct to the Kalinga, Gaddang, Ifugao and Igorot ethnic groups. 

The Igorot fabric, is woven by the members of the Easter school weaving room in Baguio City. Easter School weaving room was established in 1920 to reawaken the art of weaving in the province.

The samples of Bontoc fabric featured in this exhibit are woven by members of the Bontoc group but inspired by traditional Kalinga embroidery, Gaddang beading, and embellishments.

Kalinga blankets in the exhibit are woven and embellished by social entrepreneurs working towards the preservation of traditional designs and techniques in their own villages.

Abaca Fabrics

The abaca fabric woven in the Bicol is called Sinamay. It is mainly used in the manufacturing of fiber crafts, such as bags, tableware, hats, wallpaper, carpets, ribbon and packaging. Over a hundred years ago, sinamay was commonly used as material for blouses for women and shirts for men.

The Pinukpok is made from softened fine abaca fibers, woven in the Aklan, Western Visayas. This fabric is embroidered and used for kimona, morena, gowns, tapis and Barong Tagalog. Pinukpok is extremely rare and the abaca plant is believed to have become extinct due to the ravages of typhoon Haiyan in Aklan.

Photo courtesy of The Philippine Textile Council

Pineapple Fabrics

Philippine Piña, the Queen of Philippine textiles, is made from fiber extracted from the leaves of the Spanish Red pineapple plant. It was developed and woven in Aklan during the Hispanic era. It is embroidered and finished in Tagalog towns of Taal and Lumban and used for formal Filipino attire such as the Barong Tagalog and Terno.

Rurungan sa Tubod Foundation is a local social enterprise envisioned to create a new means of livelihood for women of the island of Palawan. Since 1999, the foundation has worked to train women in the weaving craft from the extraction and processing of the fibers to the weaving of the textiles. The women of Rurungan sa Tubod Foundation produce contemporary weaves that reflect the essence of the traditional textile industry. 

Tepiña is the brand of pineapple fabric created by the gentle weavers of Rurungan sa Tubod Foundation. It is a contemporary version of the traditional Piña, rooted in our culture and heritage. The genteric name of Tepiña is Piña Seda. The brilliance, transparency and value of Tepiña, is achieved by the combination of Philippine silk and local pineapple fibers. Tepiña is expertly hand processed – from the extraction of piña fibers to weaving the fabric on traditional handlooms. The innovative apparel fashioned by Tepiña is popular amongst Manila’s chic set.


These textiles are woven in Miagao, Iloilo in Western Visayas. The name is derived from the local dialect Kinaray-a word habol, which means to weave. Hablon is composed of various textiles using a wide array of fibers. The most prominent of the Hablon fabrics is the Patadyong. It is usually presented in the form of a woman’s skirt used daily at home and at work in the fields or gardens. It is made from once piece of fabric sown to form a cylinder, which is knotted around the waist and is long enough to reach the heels.

Textiles of Maguindanao

“Weaving is one of the highest forms of artistic expressions in Maguindanao, This unique art is passed down from generation to generation, from mother to daughter, and has managed to retain its original form while at the same time make room for bold imaginative ideas which can be used in the future.” Lourdes Veloso Mastura, Professor 

The Versatile Malong

For indigenous people known for weaving the malong – the Maranaos, Maguindanaons, and the T’bolis – this cloth plays various roles in their everyday life as well as on special occasions. The malong is very similar to the Patadyong in the Visayas and the sarong in South East Asia.

Woman as Loom

In addition to showcasing the many beautiful textiles of the Philippines, we will also be exhibiting the intricate hand-plaited mats of Samar, Sulu and Palawan.

Source: Rurungan sa Tubod Foundation

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