My Top 5 Favorite National Costumes at the Bb. Pilipinas 2015 Fashion Show


Last February 27, 2015, Bb. Pilipinas selected it’s Top 5 in the National Costume competition; a competition which seemed in many ways a subtle apology to Filipino designers after the unfortunate comment by the leadership of the franchise that ‘no Filipino designs were good enough for our candidates.’

The beauty queens hosting the competition repeatedly emphasized the craftsmanship of Filipino couturiers and that the National Costume competition was to honor them. During the competition itself, the voice over described the costumes and identified the designer behind each one, something that hasn’t been done in years, if memory serves me right. For ABQ it is a welcome change and I am hoping the ‘apology’ is warmly received by offended parties.

Now, not all of the National Costumes that entered the Top 5 in the Bb. Pilipinas 2015 National Costume competition were my choices. Let me share with you the costumes and the wearers who impressed me:

My Choice for Winner of Best in National Costume:

Contestant #10 Pia Wurtzbach wearing Albert Andrada

Contestant #10 Pia Wurtzbach in her National Costume by Albert Andrada

Contestant #10 Pia Wurtzbach in her National Costume by Albert Andrada

Pia Wurtzbach’s gorgeous shell-studded Terno by Albert Andrada is my winner not just because of its sinuous lines, but also because of how queenly Pia looked in it. Although I find the tail a little busy and maybe too white, it is my choice for best National Costume in terms of both design and carriage. This is also a wonderful example of under-accessorizing – her earrings are small and her choker necklace is understated. Elegance means using less to be more.

At the end of the FAshion Show, Pia Wurtzbach was announced as one of the Top 5. Why am I not surprised?

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The Other National Costumes I REALLY Liked:

Contestant #3 Ria Rabajante wearing Nel Claveria

Contestant #3 Ria Rabajante in National Costume by Nel Claveria

Contestant #3 Ria Rabajante in National Costume by Nel Claveria

Are you noticing a pattern in the National Costumes that I liked the best? This serpentina gown by Nel Claveria made me ooooooh and aaaahhhh like a fool on my second row seat. It’s sexy and yet conservative and once again, a fine example of accessorizing less to achieve more. Ria Rabajante with her Cupid’s bow lips also did justice to this exquisite costume through her very regal pasarela. This is one gown that I can imagine myself wearing. Imagine lang ha? LOL!

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Contestant #14 Princess Joy Camu

Contestant #14 Princess Joy Camu in National Costume

Contestant #14 Princess Joy Camu in National Costume

White seems to dominate my list of favorites for Best National Costume. I’m not sure who designed this Terno though. Does anyone know? Anyway, I’m loving this girl, Contestant #14 Princess Joy Camu. I just love her doll-like face and gentle pasarela. This design, which I adore for it’s simplicity and beautiful fit, made me think of Flores de Mayo and statues of the Virgin Mary…

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Contestant #25 Rogelie Catacutan in National Costume by Philip Tampus

Contestant #25 Rogelie Catacutan in National Costume designed by Philip Tampus

Contestant #25 Rogelie Catacutan in National Costume designed by Philip Tampus

So far all my favorites can fit in one mold and yet each are distinct and striking. This one by Philip Tampus, I fell in love with, for the intricate pearl design, the halo-like crown and the sheerness of the skirt – you can see the silhouette of her legs – very appealing and yet conservative. Love the way she played with the veil as well. Rogelie Catacutan did such a good job presenting her National Costume that she was announced as one of the Top 5 at the end of the show.

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Contestant #29 Nancy Lee Leonard in National Costume designed by Edwin Uy

Contestant #29 Nancy Lee Leonard in National Costume designed by Edwin Uy

Finally, this choice breaks the pattern of my Top 5. Nancy Lee Leonard’s Muslim-inspired National Costume was a stand out without being overbearing. Sometimes our designers ‘overdo’ Muslim costumes but this one has just right amount of dazzle. This creation by Edwin Uy was also announced as one of the Top 5 and for me, is my second choice for best National Costume. I just have one tiny reservation about this design – people who may not know Filipino culture might think that this is a Thai costume because of the the gold finger nails in Nancy’s left hand. But, overall, one of the best designs of the night!

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At the end of the show, the Top 5 announced were:

#29 Nancy Lenard, #27 Ina Dominica Guerrero, #34 Wynwyn Marquez, #10 Pia Wurtzbach and #25 Rogelie Catacutan.

So, three of my favorites (Nancy, Pia and Rogelie) entered the Top 5. We will find out who wins the National Costume Competition on coronation night, March 15, 2015.

Bb. Pilipinas 2015 Top 5 in National Costume - #29 Nancy Lenard, #27 Ina Dominica Guerrero, #34 Wynwyn Marquez, #10 Pia Wurtzbach and #25 Rogelie Catacutan

Bb. Pilipinas 2015 Top 5 in National Costume – #29 Nancy Lenard, #27 Ina Dominica Guerrero, #34 Wynwyn Marquez, #10 Pia Wurtzbach and #25 Rogelie Catacutan

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