Wednesday, May 31, 2006


so if you wanna go get a pair of bespoke jeans, it's easier now since viktor opened its first retail outlet at the fourth floor of the podium last month.

ino (or victorino, the guy "behind" the brand) isn't always there to give you personalized service, but he has staff who are now trained to take your measurements. he does drop by, though, after office hours and stays till the store closes at 9pm. we liked those white jeans hanging inside the store. he even has them in shorts. perfect for the last remaining days of summer. hell, they're perfect all year round. prices start at P3,000. by appointment only, call 0917-850-4543.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

a starlet is re-born

we miss wendy puyat-hotung. before she got married to tony hotung (the beautiful couple, left, at the prada fashion show in hong kong last february) in 2002, she was a party fixture who always made the effort to dress up. we always looked forward to seeing her petite frame swathed in cute little dresses by her favorite designers dennis lustico, puey quiñones and rhett eala. then she left to live in shanghai with her new hubby. then she came back. then last year, she launched a swimwear line called starlet. then she relocated again, this time to hong kong, where she has re-established herself, not just as a party fixture, but also as a swimsuit designer. ladies, a starlet is born...

a starlet is born swimsuit collection is now available at lane crawford (in hong kong, tsim sha tsui and peking road branches) and harvey nichols (in dubai), but fret not; you don't have to fly all the way there just to purchase one of these sexy suits. you can order straight from wendy herself by e-mailing (ask her to e-mail you all the styles—this is just a sprinkling). this season's collection is all about "fearless, girly fun," wendy told the fash pack. "i used a lot of semi-precious stones and big accents." what we forgot to ask her is, if we order direct, will it cost less than the HK$1,600 retail price tag??

Monday, May 29, 2006

the fash cam: leggings

for those of you too young to remember the 80s (perhaps you weren't even born yet and were a mere sperm), leggings were the ultimate staple, and madonna was the latest, hottest thing in music. you could not mention one without the other. to us, fashion in the 80s was defined by madonna's video for "holiday". come on, admit it, you too wore a skirt over leggings, a mesh shirt with a visible bra (or tank for us modest ones...) underneath, lace in your hair, and tons of skinny black rubber bangles. we even have pictures to prove it, eeewww! but wait a minute, we should be showing them off now because leggings are back (although madonna's star never faded, it just kept re-inventing itself)! (but we'll keep tucked away the pix of us wearing leggings with biggy shirts belted at the waist, with oversized shaker-knit sweaters, with pumps, and with neon accessories, thank you very much...) so just when you thought those evil leggings were dead and gone and would never come back to life, well, take a look, they're baaaacck... (but we'll leave them to girls in their teens and 20s, and anyone who has the personality to carry them off because, just like a fragrance that can trigger a memory, wearing leggings again will remind us of a decade we'd rather forget!!!)
xeng wears it the most popular way today: under a denim mini
not confident enough to show off your legs in shorty shorts? do like ornusa and add leggings
a hong kong socialite wears it under a sheer black cocktail dress
audrey's mad mix works because she keeps everything else—hair, makeup, nails—clean
kym channels edie sedgwick from the 60s and madonna from the 80s
you can't see it, but cecile has a denim mini under her oversized tunic
jenni wears it under one of her beach cover-ups for folded & hung

PS: and don't forget: the fash pack invites you to join the fash pack! send in a full-length photo (or two or three) of you in your cute little outfit and get the chance to see yourself in this blog’s “the fash cam” section! include your name (first name only will do), where the photo was taken, the occasion, and of course, the fashion credits! e-mail your pix to today!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

more sale! sale! sale! (updated)

from rajo laurel: "it's my birthday month and i would like to invite you to the annual house of laurel birthday sale on may 25-27! it's our biggest sale of the year! get your hands on original samples and one-of-a-kind pieces. prices slashed up to 90% off! truly a must-go-to event! it's our way of thanking you for all your support! save the dates on your calendars! see you!" house of laurel, 6013 villena corner mañalac streets, barangay poblacion, makati city, tel 890-1686 and 895-5688.

from itsie-bitsie: "take advantage of our special promotions for the month! a treat for all jean lovers as we reduce all prices for denim in the store. enjoy discounted prices on 7 for all mankind, citizens of humanity, ernest sewn, and rock & republic 2005-06 collection. all men's jeans and tees also discounted!" itsie-bitsie, 1755 adriatico street, malate, manila, tel 522-8592.

from my beauty hub: "everything-must-go sale @ my beauty hub! enjoy up to 80% discount on high-end fragrances, skin care and cosmetics from may 26-31. my beauty hub is open from 10am-8pm. see you there!" my beauty hub, retail arcade, 6750 ayala avenue, makati city, tel 752-7937. update: extended up to june 14!

from chocolate clothing company: "chocolate's famous and delicious warehouse sale! nice styles, new sale items. grab jeans available! 50-70% off. credit cards accepted. may 31-june 4, 2006." chocolate clothing company warehouse, 25, s. santos st., sto. rosario, pasig city, tel 643-4331, 641-4526, 641-5843.

from get happy: "last weekend for end-of-summer sale! 30% off on all get happy items @ all rustan's outlets til may 31! check out the new arrivals! featuring new matrioshka russian doll collection and more!"

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

all of asia

today in a spur-of-the-moment moment, we decided to drive the length of edsa, all the way to end, to the newest, biggest, most-talked-about destination, SM mall of asia.
everything you heard about the size of this mall, which opened to the public last sunday, may 21, is true: it is ginormous! to the point of confusion, the potential of getting lost, of losing your companions, of forgetting where you parked (don't ever forget where you parked or it'll be a disaster! take note if you parked in the north or south wing, which floor, which section), of missing out on a lot of shops because, well, there are just too damn many. when you enter the mall, the first thing you have to do is check out the directory.
we read that they'll be giving out maps—which is an excellent idea, every huge mall in hong kong and the US does, and which the ayala malls should do too, as they don't even have a reliable directory in their malls—but we didn't see any. mall of asia will surely go through a lot of birthing pains for the first three months at least. (to wit, the rest rooms in the cinema were not labeled as mens or ladies rooms, which led to confusion, so they became unisex rest rooms.) it seemed only half the stores were open, but the rest will open within the next month and a half. a lot of the SSI shops are set to open by june 30, and most of them occupy a whole block, which we recognize as another "huang wing," so nicknamed because all their shops are bunched up together, just like in greenbelt 3 and power plant ;-)
on this side, the food court side, as far as the eye can see, it's a whole row of SSI shops, like lush, calvin klein, mexx, ecco, nine west, beauty bar, fruits & passion and charriol, and on the other side, facing the lobby, are marks & sparks, kenneth cole, lacoste and zara. and looky! where will you shop? the first floor or the second floor? uy, intriga yan!
and to cap the evening (we finally got to watch "mission impossible 3"!), we sat by the balcony area of the west side, had us a couple microbrewed beers at grappa's, and watched the world's most beautiful sunset (but don't take such deep breaths, if you know what we mean, this isn't boracay)...

Monday, May 22, 2006

michi's new store

so this is why michi calica has been so quiet this last couple of years... she was slowly but surely building this:
folks, welcome to michi calica bridal & home, a big, bright and beautiful space for not just brides-to-be but anyone looking for something new to wear or something new to decorate her house with. michi's new atelier, which had a soft opening two weeks ago, is located at oasis, a new complex on aurora boulevard, quezon city (right across broadway centrum). we remember the early days of michi, when she burst into the fashion scene in the mid 90s, as part of the youthquake of young fashion designers that included rajo laurel, carla sibal and cecile zamora. she was quite active in the design-competition circuit, became a favorite among young brides, was the go-to designer for up-to-the-minute cocktail dresses and formal gowns, even went ready-to-wear for a short-lived label, and was a real party girl. then after she got engaged, got married and had babies by the turn of the millennium, she laid low. now she's back, and back with a vengeance. visit her atelier for off-the-rack outfits and bags for dressy occasions, plus accessories by ciara marasigan and vicky ang, shoes by solea and twinky tabs, wedding bands by elena bautista, furniture and home decor by jo ang, and of course personalized service from michi herself for brides- and debutantes-to-be. for more info, call 725-7124. photographs by andrew contreras.

Friday, May 19, 2006

manny's exhibit

last night, we attended an art exhibit opening of businessman manny padilla (for those who are old enough to remember, this is the guy who launched chico computers back in the 80s) titled "room series" at the milky way building on pasay road (or now known as arnaiz avenue, why, we don't know, since no one calls it that). most of manny's friends didn't realize that he painted at all, and that is what makes this exhibit extra special. the sale of the works are for the benefit of the essenses foundation, and partly for the benefit of our friend toni abad who recently discovered she had breast cancer and started chemo treatment. toni gave a very touching, and at the same time informative, speech. workaholic that she was (she worked for rustan's cosmetics & toiletries division for many years till last february), she never thought that she would ever get cancer; fact is, no one ever does, which is why she stressed the importance of awareness, and more importantly, awareness of your own body and any changes you may notice. toni herself noticed a lump in her breast late last year, but because she was so busy, ignored it for months. when she finally took the time to go to the doctor (or doctors; she sought a second and a third opinion), it was discovered that she had stage 1 cancer, which fortunately, would still be receptive to chemotherapy. "young or old, healthy or not, and even if your family does not have a history of cancer, it can hit anyone," said toni. so, ladies, take the time to do a breast self examination at least once a month. it may save your life.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

good-bye, elliott :'-(

the E train is going home. the yamin machine has been turned off. the yaminions have dispersed. elliott has left the building. talo na ang manok namin. but who knew our boy elliott yamin would get this far? top 3! it's still something to be very proud of. chris must have been seething as he watched the top 3's homecoming. "i coulda been a contender!" but it was a pretty close fight and even though elliott ended up in the bottom, the over 50 million votes (the most so far!) were almost equally split. nothing to sneeze at! but did you see how happy katharine mcboobs was?? while taylor looked kinda sad about seeing elliott go, the kat was practically jumping up and down with joy and cheering that the funky white boy was going home. "better him than me!" biatch! if she ends up winning, we can totally see her doing a britney-jessica-paris-fill-in-bimbo-of-your-choice and becoming a tabloid fixture. being the pretty, bratty, california gal that she is, it's not hard to imagine. now if taylor wins, hmmm... how well will his singing go when you listen to him on your ipod without the benefit of his onstage antics? which brings us to what made elliott so great. while we won't argue that he was the least attractive contestant (sige na nga, chaka sha), he certainly had the best voice! too bad pang ipod lang sha, hindi pang mtv. (ay, may ipod video na pala.) now wouldn't it have been perfect if you could put elliott's voice in ace's face and body??? the perfect american idol!!!

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

mall movements

we know we've been doing a lot of posts about shopping and about malls, but what can we do, that's where all the current action is! to continue our observations on power plant from the last couple days, this was something we spotted there a month ago:
the "papering" of the windows of marlboro classics and calvin klein jeans. which can mean one of three things: (1) they're taking inventory; (2) they're renovating; (3) they're closing. apparently it was the latter for these two SSI brands. because over a week ago, this is what took their place:
which begs the question (rather questions): why such a big space for a/x armani exchange? is it that successful that they have to open another makati branch (there's already one in glorietta 4)? who shops there? anyone care to answer? then over at rustan's makati in ayala center, hello, what's this? what happened to the U section on the 3rd floor? it's like it never existed!
completely empty empty empty, completely devoid of racks, shelves and merchandise, and forget about trying to cross over to the children's section on the other side. it's been closed off, so you'll have to go or up or down in order to go to the opposite end. so where did everything go? here's your guide:
when you ask the salesladies what's going on, all they can say is "renovation," but one was updated enough to inform us that SSI was taking over the floor. that dang SSI, they're taking over everything! (including our wallets!) our DPA (deep-penetrating agent, just like ricky lo has) told us that debenhams will be taking over the whole section. which begs a variation of the above questions: why? is debenhams in shangri-la plaza doing that well that a second branch is direly needed? or required by the principals? who shops there? because every time we enter the shang store, it's almost always empty. well, we know who's going to be happy: clarins institut and its clients. the music at U was just too damn loud, you could hear it boom-booming and feel the walls vibrating while getting a facial. how relaxing is that??

SALE! SALE! SALE! (text message alerts!)
• from the paul smith mobile: offering a sale on autumn/winter 2005 items. G4 and shang.
• your wish is our command as we indulge you with our all-out jewelry sale from saturday, may 13 til sunday, may 28. as much as 30-60% off on pieces from wouters & hendrix, alexis bittar, greenbeads, vaubel and julie sandlau. super chic, these spectacular, one-of-a-kind pieces are must-have additions to your jewel boxes. itsie-bitsie boutique is at 1755 adriatico st., malate, manila, 522-8592.
• puma closing-out sale! new deliveries everyday! at mondragon house, 324 sen. gil puyat ave., makati city.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

new fashion haunt: independent lifestyles, part 2

what's wrong with power plant's independent lifestyles section? this oddly shaped part of the mall is so shaped because it was supposed to be the "anchor" department store, which every mall should have. (now, power plant's "anchors" are zara and mango.) before the mall opened, rockwell used to tell would-be tenants that japanese department store sogo was supposed to be their anchor, but the political crisis or economic crisis or fill-in-your-crisis-of-choice forced them to back out. then rumor was rustan's was going to take over. then nothing... for a long time, the area was filled with furniture peddlers. when independent lifestyles launched in 2004, it excited shoppers because the open-market-style section featured unique brands with one-of-a-kind items that you don't usually find in big malls, like marion godart, hot pink, mimi and solea. then nothing... unfortunately, the section had no legs, shoppers seemed to forget it was there, or just didn't feel like walking that way. so what's wrong with power plant's independent lifestyles section? where do we begin... let's start with the entryway.
an installation like this, which features assorted merchandise from the independent lifestyles (which we will refer to as IL henceforth) tenants may be helpful—but only if it's set up in the right place. this was set up by the IL entry, a place that's kind of dark and dreary and not very welcoming. we would put this installation in a heavy-traffic area of the mall, where everyone can see it and wonder, what's that? ooh cute stuff! where are they available? oh at independent lifestyles, where's that, let's go! and speaking of dark and dreary, the entryway is dark and dreary. like, there's probably nothing back there. and since IL is situated "back there," it shouldn't be treated like an afterthought or as a place where inferior or lesser brands or clearance items are positioned. light it up! add music! (but not too loud, please, our ears are always put to the test every time we enter a mall.) and be strict about the zoning! first thing we would get rid of is that furniture store by the corner. power plant shoppers who were familiar with the original IL set-up will see that store and associate it with that long-gone but still very powerful memory. then we would move those kids' stores out. in their place, we would put the popular girly brands, like bayo, kamiseta, kashieca, topshop, esprit, et. al., which shoppers will go to anyway no matter where they are in the mall. shoppers' feet will easily take them from there into some more girly stores inside IL. so you see, there's a flow. oh, and one more thing: we've said it before about glorietta, and we'll say it again about power plant—the mall is no place to hold mass!! simply put, it's a turn-off. as in, you want to go that way, but you're blocked by mass-goers who give you the evil eye as you walk by to shop. the nerve! tuloy you feel guilty and end up making an about face. and hey, it's not just us, we get these same comments from other people too. wait, we just had an idea: why don't mall owners build a separate, enclosed area where in to hold mass? or better yet, why not attend mass in an actual church!? and so, students, that concludes our merchandising strategies class today.

ANYWAY! let's just go shopping! as promised, we would like to introduce you to the other new tenant at IL...
pilar has pretty printed shirtdresses and sleeveless shells...

funky platforms and wedges...

and for for your inner alexis, vintage 80s baubles by mickey see...

opening soon: marni's room and a stall with YDG designers LZ punzalan, patty eustaquio, yvonne quisumbing-romulo and reain mata. can't wait!

Monday, May 15, 2006

new fashion haunt: independent lifestyles

we almost thought it was a mistake to enter power plant mall yesterday. it was crazy full of people! who knew mother's day would get men off their butts and into the mall? they were eating into our breathing space! we were wondering what was going on as we went from floor to floor and there they were, leaning on the railing, either pretending to be so interested in their mobile phones or looking longingly at the floor down below. apparently, they were all waiting for their wives or mothers or grandmothers who were inside the stores shopping! in the end it wasn't a mistake because there was a sign that drew us towards the independent lifestyles section on the second floor.
there's something new happening in this dead space of power plant, where they've been trying to lure customers to, to no avail. several shops have come and gone (lily, sole & co.), or moved to the main floor (topshop, nullah), but there are new kids on the block. seems rockwell picked the most popular stalls from their bazaar last march and invited them to open shop at the independent lifestyles section. the list on the right side of the sign are the existing stalls; the ones on the left are new. this past weekend two of them opened. first up:

remember how we reported last march 24 that irene's closet moved from its bel-air village home to a palm village office building? well, irene certainly is moving up! (and out of palm village.) she's now a bona fide retailer, laying the groundwork for her empire, naks! let's go shopping, shall we?
of course, not to miss, her signature crafty necklaces
vintage clothing from japan
matching denim for your doggy by foxxy fibby (they've got full ensembles, plus hats, shoes and bags!)
authentic handmade moroccan shoes by L&L
funky summer hats by earl gariando
more necklaces by sepa and frankie

tomorrow, we shall introduce you to pilar. and before we forget, topshop and dorothy perkins are having their annual spring sale! since friday! up to 70% off! till the end of the month! go!