Dak Bonite’s vibrant and rainbow-hued collection may seem like pages from a coloring book, but this fun spirit comes from a very real source. This season, the designer culled inspiration from the LGBTQ+ community. “I took them as an inspiration because I have friends that are from the LGBTQ+ community and most of my mentors who taught me a lot in fashion are also from the LGBT. I felt like my career would not be complete if it weren’t for them. Of course, in the industry that I am in right now, the LGBTQ+ people have played a major role. Not just in fashion actually, but in different kinds of professions as well.”
She took cues from things she immediately associates with the community: a light-hearted aura, coupled with creativity and wit. Hence, the collection’s name, Euphoria.
Lo and behold, the pieces that sashayed down the runway were nothing short of good vibes, which had us backtracking from the late ‘70s to early ‘80s—think tulle prom dresses in bold colors, pastel pantsuits, and fun disco dresses with all that frou-frou. There was a sense of fashion that didn’t take itself so seriously (in a good way) and it only amplified the lightheartedness in the atmosphere. Some models wore unicorn ears, pink tinted sunglasses, and heart-shaped bags to boot! There was even a hot magenta metallic number: a bow-like bandeau paired with equally cute trousers with just the right flare. Throughout the collection, Dak Bonite’s signature aesthetic of combining the classic with the trendy was definitely evident.
As for menswear, the models were spotted with pantsuits in different colors for every mood, like periwinkle and bright red. There was even a set in fuchsia for the ladies! It is with this inclusivity in mind that Dak designed her clothes. In a word, Euphoria may have begun as a nod to her friends but the collection ultimately champions where fashion is heading: an inclusive and diverse community that embraces each one’s uniqueness.
Below, we talk to the designer more about her collection.
How would you describe your aesthetic and design philosophy?
"My aesthetic is more on combining trends and classic pieces. I’m always considering first if I would wear the garment personally when creating a collection. Of course, I don’t want to sell something that I wouldn’t wear."
Do you have a signature design or key element evident throughout your collections?
"When it comes to my signature design, I’m a low neckline, sheer garment, and slit kinda person—being sultry in a way that is still aesthetically pleasing to the eye."
Where do you usually draw inspiration from? How about for this collection?
"I usually draw my inspiration from the places that I’ve been to, different kinds of people or emotions that I am personally going through."
Can you walk us through your creative process for designing this PMFF collection?
"People think that when you’re working in the fashion industry, that it is such a glamorous job. But what they do not know is we had go through a lot before finishing our collection. So aside from the stress and sleepless nights, I did some research regarding my theme.
"So basically, I used the LGBTQ+ flag as a color palette. We tweaked some of the colors a bit to create a more subtle look. Since we are going for the LGBTQ+ marriage theme for PMFF, you’re gonna see LGBT models, Caucasians, Asians, and African-Americans strutting the runway to achieve the diversity towards the process. I’m looking forward to this season because I’m going to launch my menswear collection as well. I want to be able to take that step further and kind of expand my brand for our clients to have more options."
Where can we buy your pieces?
"You may buy the pieces online at Dak Bonite Design Studio by sending a message through our Instagram and Facebook page. For inquiries regarding our customized pieces, you may email us at firstname.lastname@example.org."
Produced by Yanna Lopez and Steph Sison
Photographed by Karlo Torio