In this month's Fashion Sense, Preview editor-in-chief Pauline Juan talks about the probable economic impact of a blooming local fashion retail scene and why our next commander-in-chief should start taking down notes. Below is an excerpt of her open (and honest) letter that is everything but shallow.
TO OUR WOULD-BE PRESIDENT:
I know our beloved country has a lot of pressing problems that need to be addressed. Fashion, it has been said, is a luxury you can indulge in only after other, more basic necessities have been met. But please consider this premise: Fashion as an industry isn’t all frills and frou-frou when you consider the case of fast- fashion chain Zara and its effect on the Spanish economy. Its parent company, Inditex, is one of the biggest (along with Banco Santander and telecommunications firm Telefonica), if not the biggest, listed corporations in Spain. On the other end of the spectrum, luxury goods, according to a Bian & Co. study in 2013, contributed roughly €217 billion to the global economy.
If you are looking for an industry to build, please consider fashion.
Our designers—and the people who work in the creative industries corollary to fashion—are so innately talented and creative, but we lack the infrastructure to call ourselves a proper fashion industry.
Perhaps we can start with supporting the designers that, season after season, make the journey to different trade shows around the world, the way Thailand does. We in the press routinely heap praise on these designers, the likes of Bea Valdes, Rita Nazareno of S.C. Vizacarra, and Len Cabili of Filip + Inna, and profess how proud we are that they are Filipino. “Pilipinas Represent” shouldn’t be the end of the story. It would be more than nice if they could present the best in Filipino design and craftsmanship and they weren’t alone in doing so.
Read the rest of her Fashion Sense in this month's issue here.