Tapping the right stylist for a celebrity can work wonders in the on and off-screen fashion front. Whether solidifying their character's persona through costume choices, or making sure the actor looks every bit like a star during press cons and events, having a pro who understands your personality and fit is a total game-changer–all the more if it's someone you trust personally and not just professionally!
Sharon Cuneta has been relying on stylist and friend Nancy Arcega for over 20 years now. The woman credited for styling shows such as Senior High, Ang Probinsyano, and Dirty Linen is also behind the multi-hyphenate's sharp sartorial moves. She has not only curated Sharon's taping wardrobe, but has played a great part in the megastar's off-duty looks.
From nervously dressing her for the first time to casually hanging out two decades after, there's no one best to confirm how the showbiz mainstay is like IRL. Read this exclusive interview with Preview below!
Preview Exclusive: Nancy Arcega on Being Sharon Cuneta's Fashion Stylist for Over Twenty Years
Describe the first time you met Sharon. How did you end up working together?
"It was in 2002 [when I first met her.] I was introduced by Sandy Sta. Maria, who was then an executive producer in Viva Film, to do production design for Joel Lamaangan's Magkapatid. It was topbilled by Sharon Cuneta and Judy Ann Santos along with Christopher De Leon and Dingdong Dantes. And 'yung mga panahon na 'yan, wala pang stylist, so I did the styling for the four lead stars."
"At first I was kinda nervous because it was the mega star that I will be working with. So I had to be very careful with the fit, with the colors, and you know, when you 'dress up' an artist for a movie, you need to consider the scene. When it's a confrontation scene, [you] need to make the shades neutral and light, so I may say that I captured the heart of Sharon on our first encounter."
"Then came Star Cinema's Kung Ako Na Lang Sana. It was a film with Aga Mulach and I was her personal stylist for the movie. During this time, ang ganda ganda ni Sharon. I remember I was able to dress her up with denim pants and spring colors kasi it's a light romance movie and since then, she introduced me to the advertising world and [we] made several TVCs and prints ads."
How would you describe Sharon as a client?
"Sharon is super generous. Aside from being her stylist for movies and ads, she would ask me to buy her personal clothes, and she will insist on giving extra fees. Totoo 'yan, to all those that are close to Sharon in the industry, they know that she is very considerate."
As her stylist, what can you say about her personal style/aesthetic?
"Sharon is into high fashion and luxury brands. Like right now, I am dressing her up for her Dear Heart concert, and before going out to source in malls or in a designer's shop, I will check first with her Yaya Hanzel for pairs of platforms, sleek high heels, and other pieces that will coordinate with the requirements. Not to mention her array of precious diamonds that normally highlight her outfits and her collection of Hermès Birkins."
Has your personal relationship developed since you first met? How would you describe Sharon as a friend?
"Working with Sharon is super fun, especially when it's a movie shoot, because you will be working together almost every day. We just finished one with Alden Richards, an entry for filmfest, and Sharon is loved by everybody. She always shares food with the crew and with everybody on the set. She loves listening to stories from the people she works with like sina Peachy [Mariano] and Beyonce [Jeff Amorin], and every wrap up she never fails to kiss and hug and thank her core staff—the makeup artist, hair stylist, my styling team, Rizza, Sam, and Rhea."
Tell us something interesting about Sharon that her fans don’t know.
"Whenever we have fitting session it ends with hours of eating and chatting and at home. Her style is so comfy—just a pull-over shirt and a pair of pajamas and soft slip-ons."