Black was the starless sky from which raindrops fell like tiny diamonds, reflected in the headlights of the steady procession of SUVs turning onto
the driveway of the Manila Peninsula Hotel. Out of these vehicles alighted a best-dressed crowd of movie stars, fashion icons, beauty queens, TV celebrities and private clients, all to attend a gala event.
Randy Ortiz was celebrating his silver anniversary in Philippine fashion, so his loyal customers, die-hard fans and family came all out to watch a 100-piece show that highlighted Ortiz’s 25 years of creating Manila’s best made-to-measure couture.
“Randy O Silver: Heaven on Earth” was the last in the Face-Off series this year staged by Inquirer Lifestyle and Samsung with Look Magazine, Champion Infinity and Shokubutsu Hana shampoo.
The gentlemen were led by Richard Gomez in smart black tie tuxedo, while the women proudly wore Randy Ortiz originals created through the years. A pageant of his best work blazed on the catwalk.
There were modern takes on the terno on Tweetie de Leon-Gonzalez, Rep. Lucy Torres-Gomez, Inquirer president Sandy Prieto-Romualdez and Lifestyle editor Thelma San Juan.
Ortiz is known for his polished structure and minimal silhouette balanced with fastidious details in embellishment, beadwork, reembroidery and finishing. His original long gowns, cocktail dresses and evening pants, some made a decade ago (on Mandarin’s Charisse Chuidian, for instance) still shone as great couture pieces.
More than half of the pieces were done in black, but in various fabrics like gazar, silk dupioni, organza and chiffon. Styles ran the gamut—romantic, goth, columnar, mermaid and
ballgown, worn with beaming pride by the designer’s loyal clients and friends.
The evening standouts were the midi and maxi length evening dress in checkered taffeta on Nikki Tang, or layered with hundreds of black organza leaves on Salome Uy—both by Ortiz, of course.
Also, the resurgence of palazzo pants worn as jumpsuits by Bea Recto, and the strapless bustiers and halter top on Marissa Lopa. The best LBD, short and sweet, was an Herve Leger on Agile Zamora.
The fashion parade off the ramp was just as majestic as the show at the Rigodon Ballroom of The Peninsula Manila.
PHOTOS BY ANDREW TADALAN