DAPHNE® x NBS

 

 

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In celebration of its 75th year in the retail business, National Bookstore collaborated with seven Filipino design influencers including myself. The result were seven collections of limited edition stationery, accessories, and gift items launched under the campaign Inspire with Passion. Among the talents that joined me were  Amina Aranaz-Alunan, Cat Arambulo-Antonio, Cecile Van Straten, Patty Eustaquio, Rajo Laurel, and Rissa Mananquil-Trillo.

“Their unique styles and design philosophies are reflected in each of their lines,” says National Book Store managing director Xandra Ramos-Padilla. “These limited edition items can be gifted to anyone’s family, friends, and loved ones, so that everyone can receive and be inspired by the gift of passion.”

As I wrote in my previous post, I was inspired by “my tropical life”. For the DAPHNE® set, we came up with three prints all reflecting the tropical blooms and textures in and around my home.

 

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The floral pouches for DAPHNE®xNBS

 

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One set of notebooks has all three floral prints in DAPHNE®xNBS. Each of the notebooks are either plain, lined, or dotted.

 

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At the press launch of the Inspire With Passion event celebrating National Bookstore’s 75th anniversary.

 

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I wore a K&Company dress from the current Holiday 2017 collection.

 

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I love that the stylist of the event placed a cute peacock chair in my vignette. In real life I have the biggest peacock chair in my living room. A gift from Vito Selma.

 

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One of the three pouches.

 

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An envelope pouch I meant to be a laptop carrier. But it doubles up as an everything-pouch.

 

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My daughter uses it as a portfolio to carry her art stuff.

 

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My laptop carrier.

 

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I also use it as a clutch.  (OOTD: Shoes from French Sole, one piece culottes & top from Religioso, bracelet from my Instagram shop @AZOTEAph).

 

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With National Bookstore’s Managing Director Xandra Ramos-Padilla, who has been a wonderful collaborator and supporter of my brand even before any DAPHNE product was ever created.

 

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Patty Eustacio’s note cards and wrapping paper.

 

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Rajo Laurel had pens and a tote bag.

 

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Chuvaness came up with wallets and a large sized cheque book.

 

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The National Book Store 75th anniversary capsule collection is available online at www.nationalbookstore.com

 

 

My Tropical Life

 

 

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By now some of you may know that I have a new collection of products in National Bookstore. It was launched a couple of months ago as part of the NBS@75 celebration, or the 75th anniversary of National Bookstore, alongside the products of six other design influencers. This is my second capsule collection for National. The first one was a 15-piece collection released in 2015 — these were inspired by the flower names of my daughters.

 

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My first collection at National Bookstore in 2015 was inspired by the floral names of my three daughters – the rose, the lily, and the daisy.

 

For the 75th anniversary of National Bookstore, we were each asked to create three products. I initially wanted my daughters to illustrate the prints. (Yes, they are that good. But like me they can be stubborn when their mother commissions flower drawings. History repeats itself). Because of time constraints, National commissioned a local artist to work on my prints. We came up with three prints based on the world I wanted to convey. I created a set of three notebooks in different sizes, an all-purpose pouch, and a file envelope pouch which can hold a laptop, books, and other things. You may see the launch event and photos of the collection in my next blog.

I am sharing with you the story of my collection, inspired by a hashtag I love to use — #mytropicallife. The past couple of years, I have spent more time at home than working on the road. You may have noticed I’ve slowed down on my TV work – both deliberately and just because – and I used this time to learn new skills, like cooking, gardening, and all these quaint domestic disciplines that I never had much time for. I finally figured out how plants grow and thrive. They no longer die on me, thank God. And because of that, my little “farm” out of town is growing cacao and passion fruit. In a couple of years, I hope I may actually have enough produce from my little farm to call myself a farmer. For now, I have my little tropical garden in our suburban home. I am constantly surrounded by bougainvilleas and frangipani/kalachuchi blooms. And that’s where I got the idea for this collection.

 

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Will post highlights from the launch soon.

 

 

CHIC Readers

 

 

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My very CHIC readers in Seattle

 

So you know I wrote a book, right? It was launched in National Book Store by Summit Books last September 2016. CHIC: Tips on Life, Style, and Work has been on the NBS Best Seller list since its launch. Thank you to all my readers. Especially to those who bought them in bulk to give as Christmas gifts.

 

A photo posted by DAPHNE® (@daphneop) on

 

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A reader in Seattle, Amie, contacted me via Facebook. She wanted to order 10 books to give to her girl friends.

 

CHIC is only sold in National Book Store – in stores and online. I wanted delivery to be easier for Amie, so I bought the books for her in NBS Greenbelt, and her niece picked it up from me. First, I signed and dedicated each book for them. Her niece then brought the books to the US.

My book was Amie’s gift to her girl buddies to commemorate their 10th year of friendship. I thought it was the sweetest gesture, not only because it’s my book, but because these amazing women take time to see each other regularly. And look how elegant and chic they are.

 

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The package was well received. Amie sent me this photo. Since I love receiving hand-written notes, I also love sending them.

 

Dearest Amie, Zyd, Tonette, Tisha, Apple, Jean, Jennifer, Pam, and Raquel – thank you for being an inspiration. You all embody the idea of CHIC not only in the way you look, but more importantly in your faith and friendship. Stay CHIC!

P.S. To all my CHIC readers, please post photos in IG, Twitter or FB and use the hashtag #CHICbyDaphne. I’d love to repost your insights from the book.

Philippine Readers and Writers Festival

 

 

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From our partners, National Book Store:

Previously known as The Philippines Literary Festival, National Book Store and Raffles Makati now present  The Philippines Readers and Writers Festival 2016 featuring Pulitzer award winning author Adam Johnson and New York Times bestselling authors Paula McLain and Anna Todd from August 26 to 28, 2016 at the Raffles Makati. Admission is free for all events.

 

Photo - Adam Johnson (credit to Tamara Beckwith)
Adam Johnson (credit to Tamara Beckwith)

 

Adam Johnson is the author of ‘The Orphan Master’s Son” which won the Pulitzer Prize and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, and named as one of the best books of the year by more than a dozen publications. ‘The Orphan Master’s Son” follows a young man’s journey through the icy waters, dark tunnels, and eerie spy chambers of the world’s most mysterious dictatorship, North Korea. His other works include the short story collection ‘Fortune Smiles: Stories’. The Author Spotlight event on Adam Johnson will be on August 27 at 4 p.m.

 

The Orphan Master's Son

 

Photo - Paula McLain (credit to Nina Subin)
Paula McLain (photo credit: Nina Subin)

 

Paula McLain is the author of the novels ‘The Paris Wife’, ‘Circling the Sun’, ‘A Ticket to Ride’. She has received fellowships from Yaddo, the MacDowell Colony, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Her phenomenally bestselling novel ‘The Paris Wife’ was named one of the best books of the year several publications including People magazine, Chicago Tribune, and Kirkus Reviews among others. It is a deeply evocative story that captures Paris in the twenties and an extraordinary love affair between two unforgettable people—Ernest Hemingway and his wife Hadley. The Author Spotlight event on Paula McLain will be on August 27 at 1 p.m.

 

The Paris Wife

 

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Anna Todd

 

Anna Todd is the author of the Wattpad sensation and bestselling ‘After’ series that includes ‘After’, ‘After We Collided’, ‘After We Fell’, ‘After Ever Happy’, and ‘Before’. ‘After’ series has started out as the most talked about story online with over 1 billion reads on Wattpad. It follows the story of Tessa Young, an optimistic freshman at Washington State University, and the dark, troubled guy who has stolen her heart—Hardin. The Author Spotlight event on Anna Todd will be on August 28 at 2 p.m.

 

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Readers can attend three days of book signings, discussions, and panels about books, literature, and culture from top Filipino writers and artists. Join Ambeth Ocampo, Nick Deocampo, Jose Dalisay Jr., Danton Remoto, Sarge Lacuesta, Krip Yuson, Dean Francis Alfar, Cristina Pantoja-Hidalgo, AA Patawaran, Kate Evangelista, Pam Pastor, Juan Miguel Severo, Alex Gonzaga, and many more for talks and book signings.

The events are made possible in partnership with Adarna House Publishing, ABS-CBN Publishing, Anvil Publishing, Ateneo De Manila University Press, CNN Life, Rogue, Summit Books, Tahanan Books, Team Magazine, The University of the Philippines Press, University of Santo Tomas Publishing House, VRJ Books, Visprint, Inc., Young Blood, and Young Star.

All events will be held at the Raffles Makati with registration starting at 8:30 a.m. everyday. Admission is free.  Only books purchased at National Book Store, National Book Store Express, and Powerbooks will be accommodated for the signing. Books by the authors will be available on site during the event. Sign up for updates and view the complete schedule at philippinereadersandwritersfestival.com.  Follow National Book Store on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (@nbsalert). Tag #GoReadWrite2016 to join the discussion.

 

 

Trying to do it all

 

 

We just got back from a month-long vacation in our other home, Toronto. Travel is such a great opportunity to learn and be inspired. I’m so glad that our kids see it that way too. However it can also create so much imbalance in your real life, if you don’t take care of business.

Example, my kids and husband were on vacation mode, but I, on the other hand, still had to deal with writing deadlines and product concepts. Because my work is digital, I could be anywhere in the world and still publish. The key to enjoying your vacation, is to make sure to get all the work out of the way early so you don’t have this dark cloud looming over you. And that I did. Check out our recent visit to Toronto.

 

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Toronto’s skyline has changed so much.  It has been experiencing a condo/skyscraper boom! I can no longer see the landmarks I love like the ones by Mies van der Rohe, Royal York and the gold building.

 

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In Toronto’s Casa Loma.

 

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We maximised our park and playground time.

 

There are many things I try to look forward to after the end of a fantastic vacation. Instead of getting sad about missing family and the spontaneity of life during travels, I use this time to get myself excited about my work, my regular life, and my home. Though as a mother to three kids, I can’t exactly just focus on my work and myself. I have to organize my kids’ lives first – especially during the school year. It’s a crazy balancing act that works itself out somehow.

It gets overwhelming when I think of all the things I have to do in different segments of my life. It’s not like I can compartmentalize each segment. They all flow into each other. I have a home office that doubles as the kids’ study room. I have a kitchen that doubles as my blog office. And my closet has become some sort of supply room from all the samples sent to me. I manage my home, with the help of very good staff. But I’m still that person who has to think of menus, grocery lists, baon, doctors’ appointments, driver’s schedule while trying to meet deadlines, negotiating at meetings, and doing my job as a corporate emcee and host. I cook, I give my kids baths, and I make sure Patrick and I have lots of together time.

Here’s what the balancing act looks like —

 

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My work table at home.

 

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Prototypes of DAPHNE & National Book Store in my kitchen — because my kitchen doubles as an office. I love the light here.

 

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In my professional life, I emcee high-profile/corporate events, and I’m a TV presenter. I do not miss the days of producing and hosting a weekly show by myself. Now my time is more flexible. And I get to do top quality work of my choice. This was when I hosted a benefit for Typhoon Haiyan with Iron Chef Geoffrey Zakarian.

 

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When I hosted the anniversary event of Etihad, with CEO James Hogan.

 

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When I hosted the grand launch gala of City of Dreams.

 

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Hair and make up time, also doubles as time to catch up on emails and some writing.

 

I often get asked at interviews, “How do you do it?” The truth is, I do not know. Everything just happens. I do not have a concrete system. I basically just make lists and try to tick off as much from that list as I can during the day. I spent a lot of my 30’s making do with very little sleep. That is something I am not very proud of. Whether you are a mom or not, please, do not scrimp on sleep. Your body needs to heal and recharge. Get enough sleep.

Here are a few tips on how I keep myself in top form in order to run my little enterprises, manage my home, take care of my family, and make sure I am healthy.

1. I avoid getting sick by keeping my immunity strong. The rainy season has set in, and the common cold lurks around the corner. No one wants to be set back by a cold, flu, or other infectious diseases. The most important habit I have (and have instilled on my kids) is to wash my hands with soap and water all the time. It is one of the best ways to stop the spread of diseases. And to top it up, I boost my immunity by taking multivitamins every day.

 

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Remember when I took that trip to New Zealand and brought some Conzace with me? It helped keep my immunity up in the cold winter weather.

 

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Multivitamins can help you fight off possible viruses and infections. I make sure to shield myself from catching a cold by taking multivitamins.

 

2. No matter how busy I am, I have committed to doing pilates at least twice a week. I do this in the morning before I start my day. My advice is for you to find the time that works best for you. My afternoons are unpredictable, so I prefer to get it out of the way in the mornings. Do not underestimate the power of a clear mind and strong body to uplift your spirit and productivity.

 

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Pilates at Options Studio.

 

3. I avoid processed food. We still have fast food whenever it’s totally unavoidable, but this happens very seldom. I prepare healthier snacks and lunch for my kids (will have courage to share soon), and I usually make a bit more for my husband and me. I also have maintained my commitment to green-juicing. I have a cold presser and I religiously juice – cucumber, celery, kale, spinach, carrot, ginger, green apple and whatever greens I find in my fridge and the grocery.

 

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Green juice gives me a jolt every morning. I take a glass daily, first thing in the morning. Then after twenty minutes, I have a regular breakfast. I don’t believe in skipping meals.

 

4. I do not work at night anymore. I used to write during those precious quiet times when everyone was asleep. I’d still have to wake up when the whole house woke up so I ended up being very sleep-deprived. Not a good thing. I stopped that. Now I sleep, sleep, sleep. Wake up early. Get things done. Working from bed is also very bad for your neck. More on that later.

 


No more working in bed.

 

5. Daily quiet time helps a lot. I start and end my day in prayer. Sometimes the busier I am, the more I need to unplug from the digital world, hide from the real world, and just sit still. I have a favourite chapel that I go to. I also make sure to connect with nature. There is a lack of public parks and open spaces in the city. We knew this decades ago. So my husband and I worked towards making sure we always have access to nature – beach, mountain, farm. That’s where I find stillness and calm.

 


I love sitting in chapels. We all have our way of praying. I find that being in a quiet space helps me find my centre and strengthen my faith.

 


City life can take a toll on us. I make sure we make time for fresh air in our little rural plot.

 


My happy place. This is home to us. We come here to get recharged so we can do what we do.

 

I’m curious to know how you keep it together. How do you balance your work, passions and family responsibilities? How do you keep yourselves healthy? Are you as conscious about immunity as I am?