Last November 2014, I had the great honour of hosting the official launch of APEC 2015 in the Philippines. It was attended by the country’s top business, economic and government leaders. No less than the President of the Philippines himself, President Benigno Aquino III was there to speak. It promised to be an exciting year with high-profile activities across the country. We are even getting a long vacation because of it next month.
This blog post isn’t really about APEC. It’s about chairs and integrity.
A reader of mine sent me these photos taken at the Yusay Consing Mansion in Iloilo City. It is a “heritage home” built in the 1920s and is currently being used as the site of three high-profile events for APEC dignitaries.
According to Iloilo City’s Facebook account, The Yusay-Consing mansion has been transformed into a heritage museum, where Ilonggo products are “proudly” displayed and sold. It is also now known as Molo Mansion. Here are the reader’s photos of the Yusay Consing Mansion displays and museum shop.
Please tell me what you see in these next three photos.
Let me re-introduce the chairs from my own brand.
The DAPHNE® chairs were conceived in 2009. It was part of an overall wish, that one day there would be high-quality products sold under my brand. I set up DAPHNE as a registered trademark years before, upon the advise of my lawyer friend. Once we were set up, things worked out well and fast. I had products developed in partnership with top retailers and manufacturers. Our luxury linen was sold in SM and Our Home. Then came DAPHNE Furniture® which debuted in Rustan’s Makati and was later moved to all the big branches of Dimensione. Then DAPHNE® Home Scents for BENCH. And Currently, I have DAPHNE and National Book Store stationery. For all these products, there was a supporting team of designers, technical specialists and business partners who helped me design, set up, source, manufacture, market, and retail them. It wasn’t easy. It took time, money and talent.
The DAPHNE chairs were received well by the media and the public. They were cute. But more importantly, they were very well-made. Our partner manufacturer is one of the country’s top furniture makers, licensed for export and all that. The paint, distressing process, type of wood, hand carving process were all top-quality.
Last year, my partners and I decided to put the furniture line to rest. We stopped making the DAPHNE chairs. I felt that the chairs had a good enough run. And it was time to move on. I had planned on developing new products.
So for now, there are no longer any real/original DAPHNE chairs being sold. I may bring it back one day… after all, it is very special to me and my brand.
Another baker in Ilocos Norte gave me this cupcake with an intricately handcrafted fondant replica of my chair. It was done to scale. I kept this, as is. Though my friend, Eliza, accidentally sat on it. haha. So the leg is broken.
At a trade show in 2012 where I was able to put all my products together in one setting. Months later, I launched DAPHNE Home Scents by Bench. And early this year I launched DAPHNE & National Book Store stationery.
The APEC ministerial meetings have been ongoing in Iloilo City since September 22nd. The are “familiar-looking chairs” are being shown and sold as we speak. I don’t know what can be done now.
I’m just sad that there is no respect for intellectual property!
My heart is broken.