Fil-Am designer combines traditional PH fabrics, modern design

Posted at 07/11/14 3:16 PM

SAN FRANCISCO – In celebration of the new section of the Department of Tourism at the Philippine Consulate in San Francisco, people were treated to a fashion show of modern Filipino attire.

Models walked on the runway wearing Filipino-American fashion designer Anthony Cruz Legarda’s creations which mixes traditional Filipino fabrics with environment-friendly dyes and modern designs.

“We have to look within ourselves, so being a Filipino-American this is a natural thing to do, to mix our Filipino heritage with what we learned here in the United States and come out with a new idea, a new brand, a new concept of dressing,” said Legarda.

Legarda is a San Francisco native who pursued a degree in fashion merchandising at City College of San Francisco.

He graduated in fashion design at the prestigious Fashion Institute of Technology in New York.

Legarda’s achievements include creating an eco-friendly clothing collection for the welcome reception and fashion show at the Shanghai World Expo in 2010, designing for Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and the Science & Technology ministers from Southeast Asian countries for the 8th ASEAN Science and Technology week in 2008, and dressing the top eight finalists in 2007′s Miss Earth beauty pageant.

“I recently came back from Rome,” said Legarda. “I came from Portland to do shows. I do a few projects with the Philippine government and I also do my own things. My big collaborator is the Philippine government. I’m very proud to work with them. I do shows in New York as well.”

Legarda continues to draw inspiration from the Philippines and hopes that fellow kababayans can do the same.

“The Philippines have beautiful things, beautiful fabrics,” said Legarda. “I feel that if we Filipino-Americans would look back at our heritage and look at the beautiful things that can be discovered and incorporated in your work.”

After the fashion show, Legarda took the momentum with him as he headed back to Manila to work on more projects.

“The thing is this. I’m glad you guys appreciate what I do. And it will give me more power, more energy to do this," he said.

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