It was the year-end holidays 2017 when Ulysses King sent me sketches of his Barong Tagalogs with lots of hand painted Alibata inscriptions and I wondered, why not? The barong has been traditionally pristine like a blank canvas ready to be painted with symbols and images that best represent Filipino culture. Imagine wearing one to an event which will not just draw attention but make an excellent piece of conversation. Just be ready to bring your cheat note of Alibata alphabetization to be able to make quick names and words as to how you would want to personalize your national costume.
- Alibata Barong Inspired by ancient Philippine script and first recorded in the 16th century. Alibata or baybayin is considered the oldest script of the Filipino language. A new take of modern barong using pina jusi fabric with handpainted ancient script in monochromatic colors of the Philippine flag available in red, yellow and blue.
- Pintados barong Embroidery designs are inspired by ethnic pintados from southern part of the Philippines. Materials are pina jusi with embroidery on sleeves ,longer hem at the back.
This is not the first time Ulysses King broke fashion boundaries, in 2011, he pioneered digital printing on his Narcosis collection and airbrush painting on his 2012 Rock & Soil collection for suit and casual wear. So this innovation is a continuation of Ulysses King’s vision to move men’s fashion forward.
Originally worn by Mister Republic of the Philippines candidates, these pieces are available at Cinderella, 2nd floor, Glorietta 3 Mall, Makati City. Catch them before they get sold out. The staff from Vatican Cinderella, can tailor make the barong in one week, or better yet, schedule an appointment with Ulysses King on weekends. I had the pleasure of inspecting / admiring these pieces before eventually shooting them the week after. As a visual artist, I am a fan of sketches, transformed into fashion pieces, and interpreted further into a photograph. That is why collaboration with the designer has always been pure pleasure for me.
Presented by Rene Mouris Watch
Designer: Ulysses King
Photography: Sensei Miyaki Photography
Art Direction: Nomer Yuzon
Hair & Make up : La Provence Team
Earrings : Christopher Munar
Style coordination: Bernard Saligao
Production assistance: JC Flotildes
Models: Cindy Marriah Dumol, Thamara Alexandria Pacursa, Dennis Malones, Jay Lester Abrenica, Jedryk Costes, Jerome Vasquez, John Carlo Morales
Richard Gadiaza and Shido Roxas
Special thanks: Mister & Miss Republic of the Philippines
Dr. Rom Aromin & Lynette Padolina
Frank Ong & Kris Garcia Therese Heather Ong Mehdi Moussaoui
Location: Residence of Architect Dan Lichauco
The collection is now available at Vatican Cinderella, 2F Glorietta 3 .