Inspiring Pinoys

Which Philippine Festival Inspires This Possible Miss Universe Gown Design?

Choose Philippines
Choose Philippines | Jan 29, 2015

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Given the chance to design a national costume for the country's representative to Miss Universe pageant, renowned Filipino designer Rajo Laurel said that he would want to make a gown inspired by the Ati-Atihan Festival from Aklan

“If I were asked to do the national costume for the Miss Universe pageant, I would create something inspired by the Ati-Atihan fiesta. I love the energy and joy of this festival and the fact that we could use our indigenous motif like the pintado technique. I would create a body suit, which is fully beaded in gold and wood beads, with a feather belt accented by gold pre-Hispanic inspired jewellery. Topping all of this would be a cape of gold organza and tulle,” he said in an exclusive interview with

Sketch by Rajo Laurel; Photo from

Rajo also said that he strongly believes in the talent and craftmaship of his fellow designers. 

“I feel quite bad about all the brouhaha regarding our national costume, specifically the statements questioning how good our Philippine designers are. We have some of the best designers in the world in our country and it is shameful that one has to go outside of the country to find another person to represent who we are as a nation. I think someone has to open their eyes and minds to what our very own can offer. Perhaps, all one needs is to be reintroduced and be reminded about how amazingly talented all our designers, craftsmen and artisans are.”

His statement was after the controversy when a foreign designer was tapped to design the gowns of this year's Miss Universe candidate, MJ Lastimosa.

VIEW: Don’t Just Watch: Dance & Jump & Yell & Splash Yourself in Colors in the Philippines’ Ati-atihan Festival!

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