After a rainy and gloomy start to the New Year, the sun finally came out on the first few days of January.
Based on the feng shui forecast, the coming Year of the Earth Boar will be more prosperous for all animal signs because the auspicious number “8” is at the center of the Annual Flying Star chart.
The Chinese New Year starts on Feb. 5, but preparations to activate positive energy should commence already.
The country’s foremost feng shui expert, Marites Allen, shared some wonderful tips at the recent 14th Feng Shui Convention at Conrad Manila. Co-hosted by Boy Abunda, the informative and entertaining extravaganza gave a detailed forecast for each animal sign.
Marites started with an overview of 2019, noting that the lucky signs this year are Rabbit, Rat, Dog and Boar.
The Dragon and Snake should wear the floral mantra medallion with evil eye and antirobbery medallion to prevent risk of losing money, opportunity or to prevent accidents.
For homes facing southeast, protect this sector by displaying Fu Dogs or the Blue Rhino and Elephant. The southeast sector may face possible robbery, injury and accident coupled with emotional stress.
Good prospects for power, unexpected wealth, career and recognition await the Rabbit-born, who will benefit by carrying the windfall amulet. East-facing homes will reap the full potential of this lucky star. Display the Lotus flower or the eight auspicious symbols for overall support.
The northwest sector of homes has indications of some future expansion and growth luck. Activate this sector with six-tier water fountains or an infinity symbol. Everyone in the family could experience great success and wealth luck by wearing lucky nine charms or any wealth symbol to ensure a continuous flow of good fortune, especially to Dog- and Boar-born people.
Occupants in the northeast area of the home will be challenged with health issues. Minimize these negative energies by displaying the protective medicine mantra or health longevity plaque. Tiger- and Ox-born people and those animal signs afflicted this year should wear the auspicious Ruyi and the astrology medallion which will encourage more strength, courage and wisdom.
The north sector occupied by the Rat-born will benefit from good luck in academic, positive career, romance and travel opportunities. Display a pair of mandarin ducks, double happiness symbols to enjoy relationship luck. The Rotating Globe can also speed up travel luck.
For my annual Chinese New Year party, I bought lots of prizes from Frigga by Marites Allen.
I also asked avant-garde stylist Junjun Ablaza to recreate the oriental décor he designed for the celebration of his mother Mellie’s 78th birthday at their sprawling hacienda in Alfonso, Cavite. Arguably Manila society’s unrivaled party hostess of this era, Mellie chose a lavish Chinese theme for her celebration of life.
A grand banquet befitting a queen was held for Mellie, the honorary consul of Guatemala. The party was also a tribute to China with Chinese dances and performances by her talented grandchildren. For her party, she wore two gowns by Steve de Leon, who created a Mandarin empress costume with a matching headpiece.
To complete Mellie’s imperial theme, Junjun transformed their large pavilion into Salon de Mellie, a dim-lighted, oriental banquet hall complete with life-size, antique Buddha statues lining the walls, and big golden lanterns decorated with pink blooms hanging from the ceiling evoking sensuousness and luxury reminiscent of oriental chambers from a bygone era.
The big day started with a thanksgiving Mass at the hacienda’s chapel, followed by cocktails at the tented court where Mellie, who was trés chic in her beige gown with dragon details and antique ivory jewelry, greeted her guests.
A sumptuous lunch was served in the grand pavilion where guests indulged in delectable Chinese-French fusion fare prepared by no less than chef Jessie Sincioco, a favorite of the Ablazas for their celebrations.
The New Year also brings out the color of the year. Pantone has announced this to be Living Coral, while in the feng shui world, the four colors that compose the luck-inducing palette of 2019 are red, orange, pink and white.
These are the colors of Hello Kitty. Sanrio’s beloved character ended the past year with a fashion show and two-week exhibit at Greenbelt 5, in cooperation with fashion designer Rajo Laurel.
Presenting 20 individual pieces, Rajo created concepts designed to infuse the classic Hello Kitty image with a touch of modern Filipino flair. With the influence of traditional Filipino symbols, he reinterpreted the charming character using several methods, namely, digital printing, silk screening, laser cutting, and embroidering into pieces of flowing pleated silhouettes and powerful structured shapes to bring his vision to life.
This Hello Kitty collection was enthusiastically received by longtime Sanrio enthusiasts, and appealed to a new generation of fans just getting to know the character. Guests at the show included Sanrio Asia’s Yuko Tsuji, who flew in from Japan, Mandy de la Rama, creative director of Hello Kitty Philippines, and many more. For more about Hello Kitty Philippines, visit the official account of Sanrio Philippines on Instagram @hellokittylovesphilippines for updates, or visit SM Aura and SM North Edsa department stores for more Kitty finds.