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Filipiniana Is Not A Costume: How Lesley Mobo, Pepito Albert Dressed Bongbong Marcos' Family In Traditional Wear
  • On Thursday, June 30, 2022, Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. officially begins his duties as the 17th President of the Philippines as he takes his oath during the inauguration held at the National Museum of Fine Arts in the City of Manila.

    President Bongbong and the rest of his family—First Lady Atty. Liza Marcos-Araneta and their sons Sandro, William Vincent, and Joseph Simon—championed Filipino talent in their chosen outfits for the momentous event.

    READ: BBM On Food, Teachers, Health: 'Ang Pangarap Niyo Ay Pangarap Ko'

    On Wednesday night, June 29, 2022, President Bongbong revealed in a Facebook post that he will be wearing a creation by Pepito Albert.

    In his caption, President Bongbong wrote, "Wala nang mas angkop pang kasuotan bukas kundi ang gawang pinoy! Iwagayway ang damdaming makabayan sa isip, salita at pati na rin sa pananamit!"

    The designer sought inspiration from the Rayadillo, the traditional military uniform during the Spanish colonial era.


    Ilocos Norte representative Sandro Marcos wore a barong made by Makati City-based Salvo Tailors.

    Sandro's brothers Simon (second from right) and Vinny (far right) also wore matching barongs.


    President Bongbong's mother Imelda Marcos was spotted wearing a powder blue terno designed by Pepito Albert.

    In a Facebook post, director Darryl Yap revealed that Imee designed the gown herself, and the design was brought to life by Dubai-based fashion designer Rem Divino.

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    The sleeves of her dress were embellished with restored lockets, chains, and pendants, which were gifts from her father, former President and late dictator Ferdinand Marcos Sr. Senator Imee was accompanied by her sons Borgy Manotoc and Ilocos Norte governor Matthew Manotoc. The President's youngest sister Irene wore a pastel green Filipiniana.

    What is Filipiniana?

    Filipiniana is the umbrella term for various traditional dress, recognizable by the butterfly sleeves and native fabrics. Once a symbol of beauty, femininity, and modesty, it has evolved over the last century into modern takes. Its forms can often be seen in foreign silk or shorter lengths, which was unheard of in the time of Maria Clara, when a glimpse at a woman's ankles was enough to excite the opposite sex!

    The former First Lady Marcos is iconic for dressing in Filipiniana. She met English monarchy and graced the White House in a terno during the 20-year presidency of her late husband, Ferdinand Marcos, Sr.


    What are the different types of Filipiniana?

    While there are many variations, including the Traje de Mestiza and Balintawak, the foundational designs can be seen in the following:

    Baro't Saya

    The baro or camisa is the blouse and the saya is the skirt. The baro is often made of a fine fabric that can be light or transluscent, but also gives the origins of the signature butterfly shape of the sleeves. This dress requires an alampay or panuelo, also known as a scarf, to be draped around the chest area for modesty. The saya is typically unadorned and, with more standards of modesty, required a tapis (or overskirt) to be wrapped around a woman's waist in this traditional wear.

    Maria Clara

    During the Spanish period, the Maria Clara came to embody a more superfluous sleeve that puffs throughout the arm. The tapis is often patterned with downward stripes that resemble "seven daggers," a detail that resembles the eveningwear of Jose Rizal's eponymous female character in Noli Me Tangere.



    Perhaps the most recognizable and adapted into modern times, the terno features stiff butterfly sleeves and a silhouette that nips at the waist to highlight the feminine figure. It literally translates to "matching," so often it is in monochrome baro't saya, with fashion designers taking liberty in pattern, jewelry, and design.

    This story originally appeared on Pep.ph. Minor edits have been made by the SmartParenting.com.ph editors.

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