Students of Slim’s Fashion & Arts School recently looked to the work of their school’s founder for inspiration for their exam projects, some of which will be shown at their upcoming exhibition of student work.
This is in celebration of the Salvacion Lim Higgins Education Fund, which the institution formally introduces this month. “Slim,” as she was widely known, was convinced that Filipinos were inherently gifted; all that was needed were the right skills to help them transform raw creative talent into a source of income. On that belief, the school that bears her name was born.
To help raise awareness for the fund, this year’s exhibition features students’ exam pieces inspired by her work. One of the country’s most respected designers, Slim created high fashion during some of the Philippines’ most glamorous times, from 1947 to 1990.
Her signature archetypes included daring silhouettes, refined lines and a surprising color palette. Above all, she was recognized for complex and intricate construction techniques. Today, what is often referred to as the “Slim’s Method” is still taught in the school.
Inspired by her fashion, students created their own. Some feature meticulous details, such as student Rusanne Casela’s birds in flight on a pantsuit, or Genesis Alcantara’s beadwork on his bespoke barong.
Ambitious cuts are also on show. Slim’s inclination for architectural structure—usually difficult to achieve—are reflected in ternos engineered by Niv Lagman and Myka Dominado, and in Hannah Adrias’ barong. For their dresses, Leo Cadete and Noel Martin positioned dramatic details at the back, as Slim was fond of doing.
Even seemingly simple draped garments were not so simply constructed. Slim believed the fewer seams on a garment, the better—a challenge both Irma Raquedan and Keisha Bandiola took as they sculpted dresses from one continuous piece of fabric.
The millennials’ take on old-world glamour is complemented by an exciting new component: Swatch watches, contemporarily styled as fashion accessories. Throughout its history, Swatch has consistently influenced and altered the way we look at timepieces, creating trends and taking watches into the realms of art and fashion.
Slim’s Fashion & Arts School’s annual exhibition of student work was held at Mega Fashion Hall, with the support of SM Megamall, on last Oct. 16-22.