it was explained to us that rhett's show last week did not start late and was in fact on time (no marc jacobs dramas here!). 4pm is when tea is served at makati shangri-la's lobby lounge, so an hour is set aside for the ladies (and the gents) to leisurely arrive, get seated, table-hop, beso-beso, and have tea time and chikatime (oops, careful). and at 5pm en punto, the fashion show begins. producer inno sotto is very strict about this, we were told. so far, so good. yesterday, we rushed from the formal opening of the new the body shop in glorietta 3. its former location in glorietta 2 was one of the casualties of the "bombing" last october; its new location is where sari-sari store used to be. now the biggest branch in the philippines, the body shop has an excellent, street-side location facing the landmark. anyhoo, as we entered makati shang's side entrance, we spotted a group of tall women with high hair and high heels and the most gorgeous gowns and robby carmona yelling, "let's go, girls!" let's go, girl, and grab a seat!
patrice opened the show with short cocktail dresses and already the ladies in the audience were bristling with excitement. the frocks were pretty without being precious, and exhibited a restraint in embellishment and volume that spoke of a seasoned designer. she used a lovely piña-type fabric in muted colors and with a subtle sheen. then came the jersey pieces, which we would love to wear, but yes only in our fantasies, where we have perfect bodies, like these gals (not a "bill blass" in sight, haha!)... then came the showstoppers. these are grand-entrance gowns, but not in a hey-look-at-me-i've-arrived-take-my-picture kind of way, but more of a wow-who-is-that-i-want-to-get-a-closer-look kind of way, know what we mean? maybe it had to do with the palette (cream, taupe, black) that toned down the pieces, the choice of fabric (rough, textured, subtle sheen), and no bling-bling (save for flower groupings). the woman wearing the gown stands out and that's hard to pull off in such dramatic pieces. all we can say is iba talaga pag babae ang nag-design. congrats, patrice! and more congrats will be in order next month when she opens her first retail shop in greenbelt 5 called paradi.