Thursday, April 06, 2006

allegra under the pink sky of the secret garden

no, that title is not something we thought up after a night of getting strunk, it's actually the title of inno sotto's fashion show, which happened last night. actually. we wanted to get to this first before writing about our afternoon with helena and our evening with guerlain last tuesday. inno's show was held at the tower one & exchange plaza garden; in other words, ugarte field on the corner of ayala avenue and paseo de roxas. yes, it was an outdoor affair, and while it's good to pray for no rain, it wouldn't hurt to pray for a gentle breeze either because it was so damn hot! attire required was coat/barong/gown, so the men in their suits were sweltering as soon as they stepped out of their cars. the barong tagalog is really the best for "formal" affairs held in the summer or outdoors. beach attire might have been more appropriate since fancy fabric shoes were ruined for sure as soon as they stepped onto the sandy ground of the garden. but that's inno for ya! it's all part of the fantasy! that pink sky! that secret garden! filled with beautiful women in beautiful gowns with sweat trickling down their svelte backs! but the heat didn't stop us from filling up at the buffet tables; when it's catered by margarita fores, you gotta know it's good.

we wanted to take pictures of the ladies in their finest (and they really did come in their finest), but it was just too hot to go around and, not to mention, too difficult to negotiate sandy ground in a long gown and high heels. it was easier to just stand in one spot and fan ourselves with the complimentary abanico. but enough complaints, let's get to the show. they built a long long long runway, with rows of chairs so close to the clothes you could actually touch them, and on one end, a small band that played standards and a singer who sounded a lot like tony bennett (oh, the music reminded us so much of richard tann, we could imagine him singing those songs. incidentally, the souvenir program said "this show is in memory of richard tann." his first death anniversary is next month).

the show opened with separates in cotton pique and silks of different weights. there were swing coats, little jackets, bandeau tops, shorts, capri pants and dresses, all in a structured yet casual silhouette, in very summery shades, from brights to sorbets to whites. some of them had flower cutouts, which we thought resembled the fine art of chinese paper cutting, but someone behind us said it resembled the white floral paper cutouts hanging in rustan's—taray!

when your exit is just as important as your entrance, inno is the go-to guy:

the bridal gown came out in the middle, after the short day dresses, before the long formal gowns. ria boliver was his chosen bride. this is the gal to watch, the next in line for supermodeldom. her long limbs, swan-like neck and compact head make her look like she's six feet tall, but if we're not mistaken, she's actually only about 5'8". we love the "separates" look of this gown; can't you just see yourself wearing that little lace jacket with a tank top, skinny jeans and high heels?

now for the gowns, gowns, glorious gowns! while inno is known for his precise construction, he went back to his roots with empire-cut gowns, which were softer, more forgiving, but of course, always in danger of making one look preggy. (although some older fashion folk said some of the looks were "old inno"—the brooches? the big flowers? that empire-cut in black and white?)
empire-cut gowns in black and white:


these could pass for vintage inno:

ruffles, ruffles, lots of ruffles! and interesting ruching details on backs and sleeves:

No comments: