Last July 8, Manila’s fashionphiles partied the night away at a Coco Banana-inspired event.
Preview magazine’s Annual Best-Dressed Ball was a past-meets-present celebration, as the renowned discotheque was this year’s theme. Coco Banana was the “It” place in the ’70s, a symbol of society’s after-hours freedom during the martial law years, where socialites and fashionistas would strut their stuff and party until dawn.
This was exactly what happened at Preview’s Best Dressed Ball. Fort Bonifacio’s 7th High housed the glitterati in their sexy one-shoulders, loud colors, elegant draping, deep necklines, and thigh-high slits.
And, who better to show off style in the ’70s than the raison d’etre of the whole celebration, Preview’s Best Dressed Ladies themselves—Preview’s July cover girl, the talented actress Iza Calzado; the creative director of Apple & Eve, Penny Ngu; jewelry royalty Lucille Dizon; model-to-watch Pauline Prieto; young designer Camille Co; Kira Plastinina’s Keri Zamora; veteran actress Mylene Dizon; celebrity designer Charina Sarte; Havaianas’ Anne Gonzales; and the blogger behind Break My Style, Laureen Uy.
It was a case of glitter and glam versus hippie chic as the daring and the glamorous clothed themselves in vintage and designer ensembles befitting the ’70s theme.
The ’70s was one of the biggest trends for Spring/Summer 2011. Inspired by the styles of fashion’s past, skin-revealing cuts and form-flattering lines had a retro revival. Speaking of skin, a style that many donned during the ball was the leg-baring, head-turning detail that is the slit. Women showed it off by cutting it up to the thigh.
Designers like Givenchy and Halston popularized the trend years back, and this show-stopping influence is still seen today. Ladies in red Anne Curtis and Angel Locsin literally reached new heights with slits that went way up to there, the latter being a tad more subtle with a fitted skirt lining.
Up a notch
But who says these sultry slits have to remain below the belt? Let’s take it up a notch as we uncover yet another über-sexy trend: the plunging neckline. This low-cut craze was surprisingly popular for men and women back in the day. It still serves its main purpose: to attract attention.
Also seen at the ball were asymmetrical one-shoulder bodices. They truly evoked the spirit of the ’70s, especially when paired with draped, flowy skirts or even wide-legged trousers.
Preview’s own EIC Pauline Suaco-Juan showed off the neckline plunge combined with yet another big trend of the night, pops of color. Mostly worn with more bohemian and hippie-chic ensembles, vivid hues were rendered in jazzy jumpsuits, both floor-sweeping and mid-rising skirts, and even tailored toppers. Whether in solid shades or a potpourri of prints and patterns, splashes of color always add that extra oomph.
One of the most iconic trends straight out of the ’70s is the famous bell-bottoms. Flaring, as the name suggests, from the knee down, it creates a balanced silhouette and a longer figure. The high-waist versions from years ago give the impression of a tighter tummy, too. Laureen Uy’s sassy white disco suit showed off wide flares and a high waist, complete with a sexy peek-a-boo midriff.
Flared denim jeans, or anything denim for that matter, was also a common craze. Thanks to Mr. Levi Strauss, denim can be re-imagined today in more adventurous renditions, as in the S/S 2011 collections of Anna Sui and Christian Dior.
Much has changed, but the spirit of the ’70s will always be a fashion reference. Aside from a celebration of the 10 Best Dressed, Preview’s Best Dressed Ball paid homage to Philippine fashion in the ’70s. Coco Banana served as great inspiration to show what heights fashion could reach.