Twenty-four-year-old Patricia Mae Icban Hermogenes is living the dream she’s had for years: to live in New York and work in the fashion industry.
Fashion has been a lifelong passion for Triszh. “I love dressing up. When I was younger, I’d always be in costume. I had this computer game called ‘Barbie Fashion Designer’ and you could pick silhouettes, prints and colors for outfits Barbie can wear, and she’ll have a fashion show. Maybe that’s why I wanted to be a designer.”
After getting her degree in Business Economics at UP Diliman and working in the family business, Triszh applied with two fashion schools in New York— Parsons and Fashion Institute of Technology. She was accepted by both.
She had been queuing for 12 hours at the “Pinoy Big Brother Season 4” auditions when she found out that she had been accepted to Parsons. “Another thing on my list of life dreams is to be a PBB housemate. I was at Mall of Asia at 8 in the morning. I was the 5,000th-plus person in line!” she said. After hearing the good news from her mother, she abandoned the line and her TV dreams, and instead focused on her big move from Manila to New York to study Fashion Marketing.
Fashion editor favorite
That was in 2011. For over a year now, after internships with Altuzarra and Versace USA, Triszh has been working with Venessa Arizaga, a Brooklyn-based jewelry designer known for her fun and whimsical pieces (we at Super are obsessed with their friendship bracelets).
“Venessa is really fun and she radiates happy vibes all the time,” Triszh said. “She is very hands-on. I love how her sense of humor is reflected on the pieces.”
Venessa Arizaga is a fashion-editor favorite. The brand’s collections land in magazines and are sold in some of the best stores worldwide—from Bergdorf Goodman in New York and Liberty and Harvey Nichols in London to Colette in Paris and Lane Crawford in Hong Kong.
What started out as an internship quickly turned into a full-time job for Triszh. She said, “Venessa describes me as ‘her right hand.’ I help her with everything—from designing the collections to producing the collections, delivering them to the stores, marketing the product, managing the e-commerce site, dealing with the stores that buy the collections and customer service. It’s a lot of different things but I am very happy I get to do all of them.”
It’s the perfect job for Triszh who has been making jewelry since she was a little girl. “I made bracelets, necklaces, earrings, clips and other things and I would sell them in school even if we were not allowed to sell things. Mostly I just made stuff and gave them to friends.”
In college, she formed UP Economics Society’s Sparkle Club, a group that made and sold accessories to raise funds. “My family and I would also visit out ancestral home in Kapangan, Benguet, and hold jewelry-making [sessions]. I really love jewelry, so working at Venessa Arizaga is a dream come true. I look at sparkly things all the time.”
Triszh’s favorite piece from Venessa’s luau-themed Spring/Summer 2014 collection is the Mermaid in the Night Necklace. “It’s a fun necklace with shells and pearls and fun charms, and you just feel like a mermaid when you are wearing it. Another favorite is the Sharky Ring from the men’s collection. “It’s a badass shark’s jaw ring and I wear it all the time!” She gave one of these rings to Tegan of Tegan and Sara during a gig in New York. Triszh said, “She wore it during the show! Super kilig!”
Triszh has a lot of fun with fashion outside of work too. “I can’t quite name my personal style, but it is definitely crazy. Some days, I’m like a Stepford wife with my dress, pearls and headband, and the next day, I’d be wearing a muscle shirt, shorts, sneakers and a snapback. Then the next day I’d be like a forest fairy with flowers in my hair, and then the next day, I’d be in a button top, jeans, a leather jacket and boots. I like switching things up.”
Venessa Arizaga has a lot in store for fans in the coming seasons. “Pre-Fall 2014, which is in stores, is very classic and sparkly with all the rhinestones,” said Triszh. “Fall/Winter 2014, which is coming to stores in August, is very hippy-flower-power-smiley-happy. We just wrapped up Resort 2015 and so far, it’s my favorite collection! It’s a tropical rainforest paradise.”
Things get busy at their studio, where the team often works on two seasons at a time. But Triszh doesn’t mind at all. “The best thing about my job is that it is something I love doing and am very passionate about. Accessories all day, every day! To me, it doesn’t feel like work and I think that’s the greatest thing anyone could have.”
She added, quoting one of their adorable friendship bracelets, “I am such a lucky ducky!”
Super wants to feature Filipinos who are making waves abroad. E-mail nominations at [email protected].