It’s time to shine the spotlight on all things local!
For such a long time, Filipinos have patronized imported products, especially Western ones. The time has come then to pay more attention to our own. Although there’s nothing wrong with patronizing imported products and being influenced by other cultures, we shouldn’t also forget to patronize our own. The Filipino can also create and produce well-designed and quality products. The following are just a few of the local brands and Filipino-made products that we all need to support.
This popular makeup brand has completely local origins, and it was created with the intention of catering to the unique and diverse beauty needs of Filipinas. The people behind this brand made sure that their ingredients are organic and free from toxins to ensure that their clients’ skin gets the best treatment it deserves. Their makeup products provide your skin with a gorgeous matte finish while moisturizing it at the same time.
This brand is not so much a company as it is a social enterprise. The brainchild of the nonprofit organization Gawad Kalinga, Human Heart Nature produces, manufactures, and distributes a wide range of personal hygiene and beauty products that are all organic and gentle on your skin. And they are of such good quality that they’re already competing alongside huge international brands. Aside from the competitive quality of its products, the Human Heart Nature brand is also about creating livelihoods and inclusive enterprises that promote a caring and sustainable attitude toward the environment.
This popular brand is a social enterprise that focuses on infusing local weaving culture and traditions into modern fashion styles. In trying to revive a dying custom by combining it with contemporary fashion, the ANTHILL brand has been able to revitalize the local Filipino weaving culture, aside from providing livelihoods to many local tribal weavers.
Just like the other brands on this list, Renegade Folk’s leather sandals are made by local Filipino artisans. This brand has a growing base of loyal customers, due to the top-notch quality of the sandals themselves and their elegant appeal that also allows for everyday wear. The sandals boast designs that are both laid-back and sophisticated and yet durable—all qualities that define the Filipino spirit.
What’s a list of top-notch Filipino brands without the distinguished Kenneth Cobonpue furniture pieces that have been hailed the world over? Recognized as “rattan’s first virtuoso” by no less than the prestigious TIME magazine, Kenneth Cobonpue has produced world-class Filipino furniture pieces that have won many awards and recognitions and have been even admired and patronized by big-name clients such as Brad Pitt and the like.
You don’t need to look further than our own shores to find premium quality tea products. Tsaa Laya is a brand created by the nonprofit organization Kapwa Greens Lifestyle, in their aim to provide underprivileged women and mothers with livelihoods that can sustain their families as well as produce quality products that are not just flavorful but also good for the environment.
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An entire decade has gone by, and so did a whole collective age of interior design trends. How will this year be remembered in the world of architecture and interior design? What do these new trends speak of the current working population? Read on to find out.
In the last few years, open floor plans have become the standard for new homes and renovations, especially for kitchens and living rooms. This year, multiuse spaces will also become part of this evolution. It’s about less formality and more functionality. Your home office can be a guest room, your basement as a media room and home gym, your walk-in closet as a cozy reading nook, etc. Homeowners this year will be more intentional in making their spaces multifunctional to maximize rooms.
This generation of adults has been gravitating toward more eco-friendly lifestyles because of global warming scares. Due to frequent news stories of climate change and animal extinction, people are now more ecologically conscious and knowledgeable than ever before. The past few years, there has been an ethical component to the purchasing decisions of consumers. As consumers are thinking more long term because of ecological reasons, fewer yet more high-quality pieces will be the trend. This means that fast furniture and decor are on their way out. For this reason, there will also be a continued focus on handmade goods from small-time, independent, quality artists. People now prefer having a connection with the maker and seeking out companies and artists whose product has a story rather than mass-produced, low-quality items.
While everyone stays earthy and eco-friendly, this year, bold shades are going to be popular as people deviate from the overused minimalist feel. The best way to embrace this trend is to sport the Pantone color of the year, which is classic blue. Neutral decor will be replaced by warm colors, saturated hues, and jewel tones. Remember how we brought up an Art Deco revival in Christmas decorations? Well, this trend will live on for the entire year. It’s the ’20s once again after all!
Due to the ever-increasing population growth in urban areas, the average millennial adult is often left with small apartments to move in. They also move more frequently than their parents. With so many of us opting to rent instead of buying a new home, portables are no longer limited to table and floor lamps. Portable appliances, fixtures, and decorations have been gaining ground to cater to the average working adult. Even renters can tailor a space with swag fixtures now.
Having a singular design scheme in one space won’t be a popular look in the next decade. For example, the boho look is becoming more refined and mixed with contemporary pieces and modern spaces are becoming warmer and mixed with vintage. Marrying vintage with modern isn’t new. In fact, the most recent vintage revivals have started since the 2010s in many aspects of art. In the Philippines particularly, the current generations have become more interested in their cultural roots and identity. Expect old-fashioned Filipino designs mixed with modern furniture.
From walls and ceilings to pillowcases and table tops, patterns—especially layered patterns—are becoming more prevalent. We’ll be seeing more pattern mixing with color tying together patterns of varying origin and scale. Pattern matching, where the same pattern flows from the wall to upholstered furniture or bedding, is also becoming more common.
Not following trends is set to become a trend this 2020. Los Angeles–based interior designer Delta Wright says overall anything “uber-unique” will shine in the upcoming decade. We will see highly crafted, unusual materials meticulously featured in furnishings and architecture. Eye-catching items such as artistic rugs, onyx stones, and one-of-a-kind curtains are becoming a popular norm in households. People are beginning to design their homes to reflect their personalities and creating spaces that tell their story.
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Planning to hit the streets instead of staying home for media noche the traditional way? The Philippines is a country of festive islands every New Year’s Eve. Like every country in the world, this tropical paradise becomes filled with seasonal treats, sparks, revelry, and attractions during this most-awaited holiday party. If you’re unsure which destinations are hosting countdowns and which ones are closed for the holidays, here are popular spots to witness New Year’s Eve celebrations.
No list of the best New Year’s Eve destinations in the Philippines is complete without mentioning the globally renowned island-paradise of Boracay. Agoda.com ranked Boracay as the 13th most popular New Year’s Eve destination in the world, sharing the spotlight with the likes of Hong Kong, New York, and London. In 2015, Boracay was ranked one of the world’s top 24 New Year’s Eve destinations, outranking Ibiza, Las Vegas, and Rome! The party island hosts countdown parties, incredible fireworks displays, and spectacular events as it ushers in the new decade.
In the Philippine capital, the celebration is grand and lavish. The Peninsula Manila, Grand Hyatt Manila, Resorts World Manila, Okada Manila, Bonifacio Global City, Quezon Memorial Circle, SM Mall of Asia, Solaire, Eastwood City, and many other hot spots host star-studded and marvelous events all at once. Expect a lot of special sales promotions, marching bands, fine dining, performances, and out-of-this-world pyro displays.
The Queen City of the South is also home to quite a number of fabulous hotels that offer exquisite dinners, champagne, and noisemakers. Among the internationally renowned hotels here are Waterfront Cebu, Parklane International Hotel, the Radisson Blu, Crown Regency, Marco Polo Plaza, Shangri-La Resort, and Mövenpick Hotel, and JPark Island Resort. The city’s highest peak, Mountain View Nature Park, is a favorite among photographers awaiting the fireworks all over the city at midnight.
Iloilo may not be the first place that comes to mind when people think of a New Year’s Eve destination. However, throngs of locals and tourists flock to the underrated Treñas Boulevard to party the night away and witness the vibrant fireworks display launched from a barge on the Iloilo River. Typically, tourists begin the last day of the year with a memorable tour around the city, visiting iconic landmarks like the Plaza de la Villa Rica de Arevalo, the Crown Monument of Queen Isabela II, and Plaza Libertad. Others prefer frolicking in its beach destinations before making their way to the boulevard.
Davao City is famous for banning firecrackers yearlong. In the ordinance’s 12 years of implementation, Davao City has recorded five straight injury-free years, starting on New Year’s Eve 2010. Locals instead come together dressed up in colorful costumes on the way in a parade to Freedom Park along Roxas Avenue to blow party horns (torotot in Visayan). As much as 7,500 people join in the revelry, beating the world record of 6,900 horn tooters set by Japan. The festival also features a party-horn creativity competition, torotot-inspired costume contest, torotot cosplay competition, Zumba dance contest, and hip-hop dance contest among barangays in the city, with as much as P50,000 in prizes up for grabs. Balloons with surprise gifts and rewards are also distributed to the delight of the partying crowd.
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The Filipino Christmas is upon us! It’s the season for Noche Buena, village parties, neighborhood parties, and extended family reunions. If the Santa hat is on you this year and you’re given the responsibility to host or organize the party, you must be brainstorming Christmas party games right now and making sure everyone enjoys. If you’re tired of the usual Bring Me, Trip to Jerusalem, or calamansi relay, here are games to convince you that sometimes it’s better to take the fun outdoors.
This game is best played ahead of the party as it may take time. Groups of participants will have to sing carols around the neighborhood and race against one another till they raise a certain amount of money. The first group of carolers to reach the target amount reports back to the host and wins a prize. The rest of the teams get to share their collected alms among themselves.
Shatong is a nostalgic favorite among Filipinos born before the age of the internet. The game makes use of two sticks, one longer than the other. The longer stick will serve like a bat and the shorter stick serves like the hit. Depending on your locality, the rules of the game may differ, but if there’s anything common among the many ways it’s played, the game of shatong will always involve hitting and throwing two sticks from a distance.
Replace the sticks with large sturdy enough candy canes and the game will never be the same. Like usual, set a target goal of points for both teams. The challenge here is refraining from breaking the canes apart. The team who breaks a cane is automatically disqualified.
The Statue Dance is a popular game during parties. The drill is very simple. Participants dance to the music, but when the music is stopped by the host, the contestants freeze. Contestants often lose because they freeze at the most awkward positions or facial expressions, making it too hard to stay still. The emerging winner is the last person on the dance floor.
Add a twist and memorable laughs to this overused game by ensuring that only the adults who’ve had one too many drinks are qualified to participate! Just lure them with a worthwhile prize to convince them to participate.
Make the traditional Easter egg hunt Christmassy by replacing Easter eggs with little presents! The excitement doubles when the participant with the most presents collected is declared the winner and is awarded a huge prize.
Design a Christmas rope ahead of time for this game. Hang little presents toward the middle of the rope. Reserve the smallest gift to be hung at the center. As the two teams play tug of war, the frontmost players struggle to snatch as many hanging gifts as they can from the rope. The team with the most presents wins.
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The whole world agrees that no one celebrates Christmas like Filipinos. Time and time again, the Philippines makes it way to facts and trivia on Christmas traditions due to the length of the merrymaking. The Filipino Christmas season starts on September 1 and ends on the Epiphany in January. You’ll literally hear Christmas carols and see lights and Christmas decorations put up on houses, establishments, and streets after the last day of August!
The traditions have been around for centuries, but how does the Filipino Christmas look like in 2019? Here are trends we’re seeing in Christmas decorations this year.
The original culture of Filipinos is slowly making a revival, and it’s stirring up a revolution. Gone are the Westerner-patronizing generations of Filipinos; millennials and Gen Zers are slowly reclaiming the real identity of the Philippines, and the designers of today are hearing the clamor. You’ll be seeing bamboo wood, Capiz shells, nipa, abaca, rattan, coconut wood, and piña used to make aesthetically pleasing lanterns, stars, Christmas balls, wreaths, nativity tableaus, garlands, and Christmas trees. Imagine the earth tones of these indigenous materials combined with the warm hues of yellow lights!
Dried-up leaves, acorns, rough ropes, wooden buckets, wooden panels, crates, kegs, fairy lights, and organic textiles are not just for weddings. The rustic motif has made its way to the Christmas season and, right now, Filipino shops and hotels. Decorating your home in a rustic Christmas style creates a warm and inviting holiday retreat, both welcoming and relaxing after a cold rainy day.
While you can never go wrong with classic red, green, and gold Christmas decorations, the world is so not over the rose gold shade yet ever since Apple popularized it in 2015. Right now, even Gaisano malls are offering a plethora of glittery rose gold Christmas decoration sets—from candelabras, Christmas balls, stars, and branches to ribbons, candles, wrapping paper, hollies, and poinsettia.
Due to the ever-increasing population growth in urban areas, the average millennial is often left with small apartments to move in. Today, millennials stick to their mantra of functionality and prefer minimalistic design that is devoid of all clutter mainly because this generation is more about efficiency, reasonable use of energy, and saving money. If your walls are painted in a bright, light shade, minimalist wall stickers are popular in online shops today, and there are Christmas stickers coming out this season. Indoor plants and natural colors are also trending due to the current generation’s lifestyle preferences. Add in geometric designs, real fallen branches, and paper ornaments.
A minimalist Christmas is not only practical; it’s also pretty!
Designers are reviving the art deco movement in furniture, appliances, and even architecture! Popular designer HQ designs forecasts that, as an outlook for Christmas 2019, the art deco in furnishing trends would be reflected in seasonal decorations. Strong royal to dark blue, emerald or dark green, as well as classic dark red or Bordeaux-colored accents, are currently popular, so are velvety opulence, quality materials, and lush gold. Coupled with golden accessories and motifs such as peacock feathers and cones, you can create a Christmas flair as in the 1920s. Don’t forget the Cubist designs, machine-style forms of Futurism, the curves of Streamline Moderne, and the unifying approach of Art Nouveau on trinkets and patterns. SM malls are currently offering you Christmas decorations and gifts in art deco!Read More
An entryway welcomes any visitor to a house, so it should make a good first impression. And it doesn’t only welcome guests; it also receives you after a long day at work. You won’t understand the importance of sprucing it up until you come home to a gloomy, cluttered entryway after a bad day.
Here are refreshing ideas for a bright, happy entryway to please the family and the guests.
We can imagine some Filipinos homes having toolboxes, broken umbrellas, old side mirrors, dried-up or infested plants, a spare tire, barrels for rainwater, old unused slippers, and filthy rugs outside the front door. Too relatable? Guide guests from the street or driveway to your front door with a clearly marked and well-maintained path that’s around 3 to 4 feet wide, enough for two people to walk in the house side by side. Free the path of unsightly clutter! Give the doormat a shake after the holiday season, or consider finding a new one to welcome your guests.
If your entryway feels like a black hole even during the day, adding a supersize mirror will amplify natural light and give the illusion of space. Use a focal point and angle your mirrors toward it to give the illusion of depth. Mirrors also reflect both outdoor and artificial lighting to brighten up the entryway during the day and night and bounce light deep into the room where the lights are off, making it appear larger. Paint the mirror’s frame with a clean, crisp white for added brightness.
A runner draws guests into your home the way a red carpet does. Keep it clear of furniture and clutter so the space has a feeling of openness. However, don’t let it extend the entire length of the hallway. You want to be sure that the front door can open freely. A clever trick you might love if you’d rather skip washing and cleaning a dirty runner is faking a runner by painting one on the floor! Pick a soft hue that matches the walls.
You might want to make a huge change to the look of your home’s entryway by painting a new color to your walls. Choose a color that offers a warm welcome to your guests the second they walk through the door. Real Simple magazine suggested a bold shade of red. For a subtle approach, you can also consider taupe or lemon.
The small space may not allow much standing décor, so you have to take advantage of your walls. Even a single piece of art can give an entryway the punch it needs if it’s the right one. Unused wallpapers can also be framed eclectically and displayed in different sizes side by side. For a personalized touch, fill shadow boxes with vacation memorabilia, photos, and postcards.
If the space allows it, tuck in a matching table and chair for a much cozier feel. A bench for your guests to sit and remove their shoes also makes an inviting touch. But you can still provide a small stool if your space is cramped, according to Apartment Therapy. Your personal interior decorator can help you strategically place it so that it doesn’t take up too much room.
Say goodbye to your old, dim 1990s light fixture and welcome much more modern lighting that can offer a powerful visual effect. For overhead lighting, you may suspend a pendant or modern chandelier in such a height that does not interfere with your walking space. A minimalist table lamp can be added for an inviting glow.
The key is to keep the entryway bright and free of mess and space-consuming furniture. Organize muddy shoes outside and immediately clean them once they’re dry.
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