18 Aug [Metro.Style] ArteFino 2018: Jor-El Espina Weaves The Story Of Culture
By Sara de los Reyes
Priceless, unique, and brilliant—these are the words that fashion designer Jor-El Espina uses to characterize his creations, and more importantly, those he uses to describe the Filipino culture which he lives to preserve.
Establishing himself as a master of bridal and Filipino formal wear more than a decade ago, this Ilonggo talent focuses his gaze beyond the horizon of the familiar just last year. The creative gears and cogs in his head began to turn once more, all in an effort to create products that wouldn’t just be original and eye-catching, but packed with symbolism and meaning as well.
The result was something totally unforeseen, but now beloved by his loyal following: handcrafted Filipino streetwear that incorporates traditional weaves, designs, and materials that elevate local craftsmanship made by and for the Filipino.
“Before, when we say local fabrics, what comes to mind is costumes, curtains, and table runners. Why can’t we make it relevant to the millennials, to the fashion-conscious, to others? And by doing so, at the same time, it’s raising awareness of our culture, too” Jor-El says.
His new venture saw him traveling to anywhere from Ilo-Ilo for hablod, Zamboanga, Basilan, Aklan, and even the far North in search of prized Ifugao fabrics and weaves that now define each and every one of his street wear designs. In fact, this is exactly why Jor-El chose to set his heart on reinventing the reputation of local weavers and their products’ potential.
“I have to thank the people behind these beautiful things: the weavers, bead workers, and the sewers. This is my tribute to them,” he adds.
Video by Marie Francia, Marnie Giron, and Berwin Coroza
Video editing by Berwin Coroza
Images from @jorel.espina
Read the original article here.