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Check out these face masks made out of local textiles

By JOHN LEGASPI

While the “new normal” requires us to wear face masks at all times when we venture outside, some designers got creative and patriotic by making face masks out of local textiles.

While the global fashion industry celebrates its history with the Met Gala theme “About Time: Fashion and Duration,” the Philippines has been exploring the story and meaning of its ancient cloths for some time now. The resurgence of these fabrics came a few years ago as designers gave them a contemporary vibe, mixing classic silhouettes (the dignified butterfly sleeves, the airiness of the Filipiniana, and the tailored barong) and the woven textile with pieces that fit in today’s fashion repertory.

Even during this time of pandemic, it looks like the industry is not yet ready to bid farewell to local textiles. Though they are not medical grade, the masks made from artisanal weaves imbue something more than what the prescribed medical masks can—the Filipino spirit.

Here are designer reusable face masks filled with local flavor.

RHETT EALA

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A designer who has an affinity toward special prints, Rhett Eala has a deep love affair with Filipino textiles. It is out of love that he makes elegant wear of them. The designer crafts face masks out of Bagobo textile. The textile is made by the Manobo subgroup, Bagobo, who are experts in getting fibers from abaca and weaving them into textiles. Eala’s face masks are tinted in summer tie-dye colors of blue, gray, and tangerine.

rhetteala.ph

KAAYO MODERN MINDANAO

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Using local textile is not new to Marga Nograles as she inherited it from her mother Mary Ann Montemayor. This time, she is making face masks out of T’boli’s tinalak beaded textile with the help of her partner artisans at Lake Sebu in Cotabato, Mindanao. Apart from protecting one’s health, the face masks are also for a cause as with every purchase of the masks, buyers also donate three cloth masks to frontliners. The masks come in an array of colors and patterns, and features signature T’boli geometric designs.

Instagram: @kaayoph | 0917-622-7713

ZARAH JUAN

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Another advocate of using locally-made materials, designer Zarah Juan produces the “Pag-asa mask” to help sustain the business of her partner artisan communities. The mask has triple layers for maximum air filtration. Its top layer is made of inabel textile from Abra. It also has six non-woven filters to be inserted the mask’s pockets. An added feature is the pinch-wire so that the mask will have a snug fit.

Instagram: @zarahjuan

TELA x PIOPIO

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Led by 19-year-old Alyssa Lagon, sustainable clothing brand Tela partners with local textile advocate brand Piopio to create face masks out of repurposed fabric and local textile from Ilocos and the Itneg community. All the proceeds from the ethical and zero-waste project will be used to make PPE suits for medical frontliners.

Instagram: @tela.mnl and @piopio_ph


Source: Manila Bulletin (https://lifestyle.mb.com.ph/2020/05/11/check-out-these-face-masks-made-out-of-local-textiles/)

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