Alex Gilvarry



National Book Store


Book Cover - Memoirs of a Non-Enemy Combatant


Boyet Hernandez is a small man with a big American dream when he arrives in New York in 2002, fresh out of fashion school in the Philippines. But on the brink of fame and fortune, there comes instead a knock on the door in the middle of the night: the flamboyant ex-Catholic is swept to America’s most notorious prison, administered a Qur’an and locked away indefinitely to discover his link to a terrorist plot.

Now, in his six-by-eight-foot cell, Boy prepares for the tribunal of his life with this intimate confession. From borrowed mattress to converted toothpick factory loft, from custom suit commissions to high-end retail, we are immersed in a wonderland of soirees, runways, and hipster romance in twenty-first-century Gotham. Boy is equally at home (if sometimes comically misinformed) invoking Dostoevsky and Diane von Furstenberg, the Marcos tyranny and Marc Jacobs, the vicissitudes of memory and the indignity of the walking sandwich board. But behind the scrim of his wit and chutzpah is his present nightmare of detainment in the sun-baked place he calls No Man’s Land. The more Boy’s faith in American justice is usurped by the Kafkaesque demands of his interrogator, the more ardently he clings to the chimerical hope and humanity of his adoptive country.
Alex Gilvarry is a native of Staten Island, New York. He is the founding editor of the website,Tottenville Review; he has been named a Norman Mailer Fellow, and his writing has appeared in The Paris Review. He lives in Brooklyn, New York, and Cambridge Massachusetts.


New York-based Filipino writer Alex Gilvarry, author of From the Memoirs of a Non-Enemy Combatant went to Manila for a talk and book signing at Powerbooks, Greenbelt 4.


His debut novel From the Memoirs of a Non-enemy Combatant received positive reviews from The New York Times, The Boston Globe and Glamour Magazine among others. It tells the story of Boyet, a fashion graduate in the Philippines. He is full of dreams when he arrives in New York in 2002 but on the brink of fame and fortune, the flamboyant ex-Catholic is swept to America’s most notorious prison and locked away indefinitely to discover his link to a terrorist plot.

From the Memoirs of a Non-Enemy Combatant is available for P995 in National Book Store, Powerbooks and Bestsellers branches. Shop online at Follow National Book Store on Facebook and Twitter for exclusive offers and contests.



Thank you Tory Burch – SSI



I don’t know what the occasion is, but I got fabulous presents from Tory Burch and SSI. I’ve already worn them. Love, love, love.






Big reveal tomorrow.



For Issay Tanabe



Thank you to all my readers who supported Photos for a Cause – A Fundraiser for Issay Tanabe last September 29th. It was nice meeting some of you who came. I was there mid to late afternoon. Sorry if I missed some readers in the morning. And again, thank you for  your help in raising funds for Issay’s breast cancer treatment.

39 families came to have their photos taken. Hats off to Issay’s husband Doods for putting this all together. He also got a lot of help from his church community and fellow photographers who all volunteered their services. There were also quite a few sponsors who supported, mentioned in the end of this post.

Here’s how that day went.


The entrance to the Jade Pavilion.


Blue Leaf donated the venue for the day. Thank you to Michelle Gamboa-Sandejas for making it happen.


The kids did art activities while waiting for our turn. The art activities were also donated by a sponsor. Food was provided by The RED Chef and Events Catering through Aphat Martinez.


They love this little project. It has wet coloured paper that you pat on to a pattern from JNBM Paper Clay Art, thanks to SueMorales. Some refreshments were provided by Blue Food Bar , thanks to Jon Sunico.


There was also a free hair and makeup station provided by Salon De Manila, thanks to Pin Antonio Mangundayao. Make up was also provided by Art Agulay.


There were five stations set up within Blue Leaf. Each each package allowed two stations. We chose all the outdoor locations.


The outdoor stations were popular choices in the afternoon. Luckily the rain let up by then.


I also did some portraits of my willing model.


She was the only one who wanted to play with me. The others were busy. Haha.


And of course just when our turn came, she decided to be… difficult. Haha! Doods, being the experienced Real Kids photographer that he was, knew how to handle kids very well. He let Stella hold his camera (?!) and he actually let her shoot. In two minutes she was in a great mood and we proceeded with our shoot! We’ve had many years with Doods and Issay documenting our family even pre-Stella. They do family and kids photos really well.


With Doods and Issay and the volunteer photographers.


Thank you to my sponsors for donating these gifts. Procter & Gamble Beauty gave 30 packs of goodies (Olay soap, Pantene, Head & Shoulders). Olympus donated a VG-170 camera. It was raffled off. The winner was Veejay Jimenez.


Doods Issay
I just got this email from Doods today – We wish to extend our heartfelt thanks for your support and participation last 29 Sept. The proceeds will be used for the much needed meds that is only available in HongKong. Based on Issay’s molecular profile, this is the only drug that will work for her. Photo from Issay’s Facebook profile.


Go Issay! You’re doing a great job fighting this!

For more information on how you can help Issay with her treatments or for general photography services, contact Doods Tanabe.



Kristine Dee and Paul Syjuco



Kristine Dee and Paul Syjuco have a beautiful trunk show this afternoon. In case you miss it, check out their pieces at Firma Greenbelt. Gorgeous pieces of jewellery. Kristine and Paul have both supported my Unicef Auction for Action the past two years, contributing beautiful jewellery pieces that ended up raising so much money for the kids of Unicef.




KDee Flower Necklace with rose cut sapphires and spinels for-web
Kristine Dee flower necklace with rose cut sapphires and spinels.


KDee Chrysophrase earrings with carved mother of pearl with pink spinels for web
Kristine Dee chrysophrase earrings with carved mother of pearl with pink spinels.


KDee Cuff-with-sapphires-and-spinels-in-rose-and-yellow-gold-web
Kristine Dee cuff with sapphires and spinels in rose and yellow gold.


Kristine Dee.


Paul Portraits 1231 1
Paul Syjuco.


PSearrings of turquoise phrenite iolite diamonds in yellow gold
Paul Syjuco’s earrings of turquoise phrenite iolite diamonds in yellow gold.


PSearrings or morganite topaz diamonds in white gold
Paul Syjuco’s earrings made of morganite topaz diamonds in white gold.


PSearrings of mandarin garnets tourmalines and diamonds in yg
Paul Syjuco’s earrings made of mandarin garnets tourmalines and diamonds in yellow gold.


Kristine Dee and Paul Syjuco will launch their Orientalism collections in a special one-day-only trunk show and intimate afternoon tea banquet on October 13, 2012, Saturday, at 2PM at Chef Jessie at the Rockwell Club.

Rockwell Club is located at Amorsolo Square, 23 Amorsolo Drive, Rockwell Center, Makati.



The back-up dress



This month is not yet halfway done and it has already been so crazy with events and occasions. And there are more to come. This is all part of the “Ber” month activities in the Philippines.

Whenever I see old friends they always say, “You’re so busy! We see you everywhere.” I always tell them, “That’s just because it’s in Facebook. In reality I am home everyday and almost every night. Give or take once a week.” The truth is, I really cannot attend most events I’m invited to mainly because the schoolwork of my two older children are so intense. We lost our tutor because she decided to be a yoga instructor. So I’ve taken over the task of helping them through their lessons. So believe it or not, my meetings and events have to revolve around my kids’ schedules. And it will likely be this way for the next… decade. Haha.

I also did a mental calculation of how much it would actually cost me if I did live the life of a celebrity socialite. Expensivo! Dresses alone… Holy Moly. Who can afford to buy new dresses for every event? And storage is an issue at home. But as you all know, I am a proud repeater. So that’s not really a big issue. Then there’s hair and makeup costs. Plus the time. I salute women who can do this all the time! Wow. It takes commitment and will.

I took the liberty of doing some styling/shopping online. In case some of you might want to have a back-up dress for any occasion. These are classic, no fail styles that are always good to have in your closet in case you suddenly get invited to a ball, VIP event, wedding, product launch or whatever. Shopbop has made it easy for shoppers in the Philippines. There is a convenient option of choosing prepaid duties and customs, scroll to the bottom.


Temperley London Ariel Lace Maxi Dress
  $2,725. I honestly can’t tell the difference whether this is just a maxi dress or a gown. But the beautiful French lace is good enough to wear to a super formal occasion. The price is also at par with Manila’s top fashion designers. And this is the brand that Katherine, Duchess of Cambridge and famous sister Pippa like to wear.

Temperley London Ariel Lace Maxi Dress Temperley London Ariel Lace Maxi Dress

FREE SHIPPING at Metallic threads glimmer on this sophisticated French lace gown, trimmed with scalloped eyelash edges. Hidden back zip. Covered buttons fasten the cuffs. Sheer long sleeves. Contrast slip-dress lining. Fabric: Metallic French lace. Shell: 55% polyamide/37% viscose/8% metallic. Lining: 95% silk/5% elastane. Dry clean. Imported. MEASUREMENTS Length: 64in / 162.5cm, from shoulder – Gold/Olive


Temperley London Long Pleated Venus Dress
$540. Also from Temperley. I love the colour of this dress. It’s made of 100% silk so I can imagine how light this is. And this can be worn in either super formal or less formal depending on how you accessorize it or wear your hair.

Temperley London Long Pleated Venus Dress Temperley London Long Pleated Venus Dress

FREE SHIPPING at This silk maxi dress features ruffle trim at the top hem and tiered ruffles at the skirt. Removable self-belt tie. Adjustable spaghetti straps. Lined. * 60″ long, measured from shoulder. * Fabrication: Woven silk. * Shell: 100% silk. * Lining: 92% silk/8% elastane. * Dry clean. * Imported. * COLOR: Please refer to still photos for accurate color representation. – Peacock

Halston Heritage Basket Weave Gown
$645. Long black dress. Classic. Everyone should always have something like this in her closet. Again, the price won’t break the bank, considering it’s Halson Heritage.

Halston Heritage Basket Weave Gown Halston Heritage Basket Weave Gown

FREE SHIPPING at Ruched panels crisscross down the bodice of a flattering jersey gown by Halston Heritage, ending in a dramatically swinging skirt. A hidden zip fastens the back. Lined in soft jersey. Fabric: Slinky jersey. Shell: 72% acetate/28% nylon. Lining: 91% nylon/9% spandex. Dry clean. Imported, China. MEASUREMENTS Length: 60in / 152.5cm, from shoulder – Navy



By Malene Birger Jadino Lace Dress
$335. Well, you know me and lace. I don’t think I will ever tire of lace dresses. This has a different spin as it is two toned. You also have the option of wearing a bright belt or keeping it plain. Price is not bad at all.

By Malene Birger Jadino Lace Dress By Malene Birger Jadino Lace Dress

FREE SHIPPING at Contrast lace adds a bold element to this feminine shift dress from By Malene Birger. Delicate picot trim accents the graceful scoop neckline, and the rounded hem allows for an easy drape. An optional, bright elastic belt cinches the waist, and the sheer lace 3/4 sleeves end in scalloped cuffs. Fabric: Soft jersey / lace. Body: 94% modal/6% spandex. Trim: 84% polyamide/16% viscose. Wash cold. Imported, China. MEASUREMENTS Length: 34in / 86.5cm, from shoulder – Eggshell/Black/Coralish



Tibi Lola 3/4 Sleeve Dress
$450. I love the graphic statement of this dress. It’s so bold. But the silhouette of the dress is so simple and clean. It’s one of those dresses you can keep forever. I remember my mom had something like this when I was growing up.

Tibi Lola 3/4 Sleeve Dress Tibi Lola 3/4 Sleeve Dress

FREE SHIPPING at Bold stripes splash a graphic pattern across this figure-skimming Tibi dress, and a hidden back zip lends a seamless look to the sleek and sophisticated silhouette. Vented back. Lined. Fabric: Silk crepe. Shell: 100% silk. Lining: 100% polyester. Dry clean. Imported, China. COLOR: Please refer to still photos for accurate color representation. MEASUREMENTS Length: 37in / 94cm, from shoulder – Red Multi



If you are based in the Philippines, you can opt for ‘”Prepaid Customs and Duties”. This way your purchase will be delivered straight to your door without any added fees by our customs department or the courier company. In case you feel like you are experiencing any questionable transactions or if you perceive some sort of unfair customs taxation you may report it in this website set up by Department of Finance – or tweet @CommissionerBOC.