After a three-year pause with the world under lockdown, Bench TernoCon’s third edition is here and with an extra flourish!
The fashion design convention is once more championing Filipino artistry through the quintessential Filipiniana piece, zeroing in on the Balintawak, an ensemble often worn at town fiestas and pilgrimages. Often dubbed as the countryside sibling of the archetypal terno, the Balintawak is distinguished by its alampay (a soft kerchief) and tapis (a strip of cloth wrapped around the waist).
The designs of 12 finalists hailing from different regions of the country graced the runway of the Cultural Center of the Philippines, showcasing their take on this year’s challenge. Representing NCR was Yssa Inumerable, Geom Hernandez, and Dee Javier, while the larger region of Luzon had designers Amor Albano, Glyn Alley Magtibay, Bon Hansen Reyes, and Gabbie Sarenas. The artistry of the Visayas was illustrated by contestants Bree Esplanada, Karl Nadales, Al Rey Rosano, and Marc Carcillar, while designer Glady Rose Pantua represented Mindanao.
The chosen few were guided by the country’s most esteemed designers, such as Dennis Lustico, Joey Samson, Ricky Toledo, and Chito Vijandre.
Among the spectacular dozen, three finalists were picked among the fold as the night’s top winners. See the winning designs below!
The Winning Designs at Bench TernoCon 2023
Glady Rose Pantua, Ramon Valera Award (Bronze)
The Zamboanga designer took on a dainty aura in sheer, lightly-toned fabric and contemporary tapis and trouser patterns for her interpretation of the Balintawak. Sourcing textiles from her hometown, the two creations bridged Luzon and Mindanao influences sans the distance.
Gabbie Sarenas, Pura Escurdia Award (Silver)
Lines and layers were a major motif for the Rizal creative, who splashed a playful touch to the often soft terno with its relaxed cut and mix of textures.
Yssa Inumerable, Pacita Longos Award (Gold)
Parañaque’s Yssa Inumerable takes gold with her glimpse of deconstructed history, fusing both Western and Eastern style ideals for her ensembles. Taking inspiration from the fashion books of late 19th century America, the designer layered draping skirts with a gust of pastel tones and patterned fabrics.
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