Arts & Leisure

The parol inspires fashion collection

Posted on November 23, 2015

A LOCAL clothing company takes its local roots to heart for its holiday collection.

Bayo’s Holiday line for its Style Harvest collaborative brand took inspiration this year from from the Christmas laterns, or parol, from San Fernando, Pampanga. Aside from having parol designs printed on the shirts, parols by San Fernando artisans are going to be used to decorate the 36 Bayo stores around the country for the holidays.

The Style Harvest collaborative brand previously partnered with fashion designer Len Cabili (of Filipp + Inna fame) to create a collection trimmed with fabrics and embroidery from communities in Lake Sebu.

For the launch, the company hired as its ambassador actress Iza Calzado. “This has always been my dream, ever since I was probably in college… I probably spent so much money [on the brand] when I was in college. So ngayon, tamang-tama lang po na kinuha niyo ako na endorser… ibabalik niyo na po (Now, it’s just right that you get me as an endorser… so I can have my money back),” said the actress in jest. “I like that it focuses on the Filipino tradition of Christmas… when you think about the Philippines, you think about our hearts, our warmth,” she added.

“She embodies the gorgeous and gracious Filipina… and for us, [those] are the attributes we want for Bayo,” said Bayo’s owner Anna Lagon, about choosing Ms. Calzado as an endorser
The brand got its start in 1992, but was sold to new owners -- Leo and Anna Lagon -- less than a year ago. The Lagons had been suppliers of Bayo since the 1990s.

“I think it was a natural progression, because we… started as a supplier, so maybe when it was their time to decide [whom to] sell the brand, the first thing that came up in their minds was us, because they know that we will take care of the brand,” said Mr. Lagon. Mrs. Lagon continued, “It was never offered to anyone else.”

The pair spoke about carving out a niche for local brands in the presence of numerous fast-fashion foreign brands in the country, which can offer clothes on the cheap side. “We consider the foreign brands as a benchmark… in terms of quality, in terms of store design, in terms of fashion. We continuously try to upgrade in terms of quality, in terms of style, to be at par with them,” said Mr. Lagon.

Mrs. Lagon, meanwhile, highlighted an advantage that local brands such as theirs have: “We know which part of the body a Filipina woman would like to hide, and which ones she would like to highlight.”

“I think we can also offer our very own Filipino flavor [for] clothes,”she said. She added, “There’s an emotion to it… there’s a story behind what we sell. It’s not just about clothes, but the people who made them, and the people who wear them.”

Meanwhile, Mrs. Lagon said that the business is “on the expansion mode.” “We are expanding aggressively, as soon as an offer comes up,” she said.

Bayo is planning CSR efforts in support of the Virlanie Foundation. -- JLG