K & Company’s latest collection



Last Saturday we had a wonderful shoot for K&Company at a friend’s house. Like I mentioned in an earlier post, I am still hung over with how lovely her house was. Our team was awesome – Xeng Zulueta for makeup (Xeng knows my face like the back of her hand and she can do my makeup with her eyes closed). Our photographer was Medal Elepano, whose husband is the Chef Tony, the popcorn that I’m addicted to. And the clothes, designed by Katherine Cheng, were so beautiful.

It’s a different K&Company this season. You’ll still get their standard beautifully cut and sewn shift dresses and corporate outfits. But you’ll also have softer knits that are perfect for any occasion. My own closet is filled with these beautiful knits – I wear them to work, on off days, on weekends, out with the kids, special dinners. They are the most versatile outfits. And the knits Katherine uses are top quality – not the cheap kind. So the colours and texture last long.

Here are some of the photos. You’ll see my new hair colour, done by Alex Carbonel of Studio Fix Greenbelt 5. To view the entire collection, please “Like” K & Company on Facebook.












K & Company
Rockwell Powerplant Mall
Shangri-la Plaza
Glorietta 3
Tel 632-722-5442

LOOK Of Style Awards




Pablo Cabahug, as seen in LOOK Magazine



A year after Pablo Cabahug was named Most Promising Designer of 2010 for his robotics-inspired body-con creations in gray duchesse satin and metallic trimmings with jusi, LOOK Magazine, Inquirer Lifestyle, and the British Council of the Philippines announce their nationwide search for the next talented young designer in 2011’s LOOK Of Style Awards.

Organized to support the next generation of Filipino fashion designers, and help them pursue their design and business plans, the second staging of the LOOK Of Style Awards will present the winning designer with an all-expenses paid trip to the United Kingdom where he/she will have the opportunity to enrol in a short course of his/her choice in London’s prestigious Central Saint Martins. The winner will also receive business mentoring from fashion industry professionals in areas such as business planning, marketing, etc., as well as a spot in Inquirer Lifestyle’s next Face Off Fashion Show.

“The LOOK Of Style Awards is actually a way for us to collaborate with artists from the Philippines and the UK using an arts area we are both strong at—fashion,” says Ana Tan, program and public relations manager of the British Council of the Philippines.

“For us, this project is one way of helping young designers hone their craft and further their career in fashion,” adds Melanie J. Cuevas, editor-in-chief of LOOK Magazine. “With the support of our sponsors, and the British Council of the Philippines, we plan to make this a continuous effort.”

To qualify for the LOOK Of Style Awards, an applicant must have an established, primary design business in the Philippines. He or she must also have a minimum of two consecutive years of design experience (i.e., have garnered substantial and recent editorial coverage, have professional staff that can devote the time and effort required to accomplish the stated aims of an applicant’s design career plans).


For more info check Look magazine on Facebook


My K&Company weekend




I did a shoot for K&Company’s new collection over the weekend. It was so wonderful. Had the best team. Glad to have had Xeng Zulueta for make up. It was fast and easy. And the whole thing felt so beautiful. I love shoots like that.

I can’t wait to share the actual photos. But I promised to wait until everything is official. Please wait with me. In the meantime I am sharing this one snapshot from the shoot. We were at the loveliest house I’ve ever seen in Metro Manila. I still have a hang over over the prettiness of it.



When K&Company releases the final photos, you will be the first to see them. Oh did I mention that the current collection is just simply gorgeous. I want every single piece in my closet.

K&Company is love.



Life in instagram



And just like that, I’m busy again. I hope to be able to keep up with my daily posts despite my busy schedule. August is a bit nuts. I have a couple of very important trips. And already I miss my family. There better be wifi everywhere in India and in Mindanao.

I was working from home since Monday. It was nice and cozy with the kids. Storm days can be lovely especially when PAGASA over-estimates. We just stay home, there’s natural airconditioning, and I don’t worry about disaster. But a whole week of rain and gloomy skies got me all gloomy too. And I got cabin fever.


Finally, Mr. Sun was out yesterday. It was lovely.


A couple of nights ago, Sophia’s 7th tooth fell out. All her other teeth had to be pulled out by our dentists (Plural. My relatives are dentists – cousin, aunt, nephew). I was so proud of Sophia that she came to realize that these things don’t hurt. Somewhere in between the first and sixth tooth she developed a fear of needles and a fear of dentists. Now she says she’s ok. And oh yeah, the tooth fairy gave her a big amount for this one.


I received another signed book from National Book Store, this time from Samantha Sotto. Everyone has already written about Samantha, what else can I say? Her first book, published by Random House, Before Ever After was just released a few days ago. I got an advanced copy. I can’t imagine getting a book deal with Random House. The sense of accomplishment, wow! Coincidence, Samantha’s daughter and mine were in the same ballet class over the summer. While I was a ballet mom trying to squeeze in some treadmill time, Samantha was also being a ballet mom with a huge book deal. I will meet Sam after her schedule winds down, if it ever will, and I shall be asking her a thousand questions about the book.


The other day while I was having rainy day blues and cabin fever (not a good combination), I toyed with the idea of having my hair cut into a short bob again. I get that way. I go really short then I grow my hair really long, then short again. It’s just hair. I’ve always been low maintenance – no treatments, no colour, nothing. But I felt I needed a boost. So I got an appointment with Alex Carbonel of Studio Fix in Greenbelt. He trimmed my hair to relieve it of the heaviness. Then instead of a drastic cut, I asked him to colour my hair. It has been over 6 years since I last did that. I was pleased that technology has changed, at least at Alex’ salon. My hair colour involved no use of peroxide. So, Yay! To get technical there are two options in Studio Fix – either organic Essensity by Schwarzkopf or Revlon Professional’s Young Color Excel with 1.9% developer. Schwarzkopf uses beeswax as developer while apparently Revlon has the lowest developer and it can lift hair. Please don’t ask me if it’s completely safe. I’m not an expert. All I know is that it doesn’t have peroxide. And I’m happy with how my colour came out. It’s slightly brown. And barely visible in that photo. Pregnant and lactating mothers should consult their doctors. Personally, I stayed away from these things while pregnant.


And thank you The Bag Hag for this very cute and practical book, Parisian Chic by Ines de la Fressange. Whenever I get cabin fever in our little old wooden cottage, I pretend it’s a Brooklyn brownstone or Paris apartment. But sometimes it doesn’t work. Haha.


Hope you have a good Friday!


Casa Roces




A couple of weeks ago, we shot Urban Zone at this “new” restaurant called Casa Roces. My producers told me it was near Malacanang. They said it was an old Legarda house. I had to double check to ask if they were referring to Cocina de Tita Moning, which is known as the Legarda mansion. I’ve eaten there too many times. It’s a place you have to go fasting for before eating there.

Well, it was a pleasant surprise to see another house, also within the Malacanang neighbourhood. This one has a view of the Palace gates. It is literally across the street from the palace. The entire house was recently renovated to be converted into a restaurant and cafe. I interviewed the architect of the renovation, Tina Bonoan. It’s amazing that they respected the integrity of the structure but gave the place all the comforts of contemporary living.

The cafe is named Cape Chino after Don Chino Roces. Everywhere in the house there are reminders of the family’s heritage – prints of La Vanguardia and the old Manila Times news papers, photos and memorabilia from the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s. I ran into Peachy Prieto who runs the business and she told me the story of the house, which her great aunt lived in. I forget the details of how the Prietos, Legardas, Roceses and all are related. Basta they are. Peachy pointed out that this wasn’t a mansion. It was just a regular house built in Commonwealth style. I thought it was gorgeous.

The restaurant is run and managed by the Cravings group. I enjoyed my meal. But please do not expect a full blown food review. You know me and food.

This post is picture-heavy so I split it. Please click on “Read more” to read more…


The gate of Casa Roces is right across the gate of Malacanang.


Interviewing the architect of the renovation/restoration Tina Bonoan. It is a perfect example of adaptive re-use. The main entrance of the house used to be off to the side (left photo). This is now the valet drop-off. Pedestrian guests can enter through the garden side, which Tina opened up to give a more dramatic entrance. They also knocked down walls in exchange for tempered glass picture windows. There’s a big Impy Pilapil sculpture and water feature out front.


The old foyer of the old entrance. Tina barely touched the layout of the great hallway. She just painted the walls and lined parts of the ceiling with pages from the old newspapers of Chino Roces.


The garden-side of the house, which faces Malacanang, has been opened up with sliding doors and a beautiful wooden deck.


Furniture came from the personal collection of the Legardas, Roces and Prietos. I love the mishmash of styles and periods.


The door to the cafe may look familiar to those who’ve been to Morita’s years ago. Morita is also a member of the clan.


The cafe reception is actually an extension from the original structure. It also opens up to a cozy outdoor bar with stone tables. Tina displayed memorabilia from the family. I love how un-stuffy the antiques look. Credit that to the chic/contemporary shelves painted in sunny yellow.


Everything here is original. The wood was just refinished. I love long curtains that drape and gather over the floor. It’s the only way to do drapes. I’m loving the light that comes through in this stairwell. The upper floor has private function rooms.


This is the terrace over the driveway of the old main entrance. Most old homes kept this as an outdoor balcony or smoking area. It was like a sunroom for the old family. Tina converted it to a private dining hall.


Original machuca tiles. This was one of my favourite rooms.


I loved that old homes had generous windows and huge eaves. Lots of natural light came in but no direct sunlight to make the rooms a living hell. I hope new architects never forget how our old homes were built. There’s so much wisdom in the bahay kubo, bahay na bato and their types.

Theres more…

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