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Favorite spots at the Manila Fame 2016: Boutique edition by Nivelle DumlaoPublished: May 6, 2016Updated: May 6, 2016

Awesome booths, exhibits, and stores sum up the 63rd edition of Manila Fame


Manila Fame, the country’s bi-annual trade event for design and lifestyle products organized by the Department of Trade and Industry’s Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions, ran from April 21 to 26 at the World Trade Center in Pasay City.



Themed Iridescence, the trade fair and boutique exhibition showcased export-quality products, such as home furnishings, furniture, holiday gifts and décors, and fashion items, all highlighting the talent of local artists from different Philippine regions. An exhibit named The Artisans Village promoted the Philippine islands’ artisans and their mastery of woodcarving, metal forging, weaving, and other forms of traditional arts and crafts. had the chance to experience and witness the high-concept products represented in three strands—artisanal, green crafts, and luxe lifestyle—showcased in these 12 awesome spots.


1. JNBM Paperclay

Along the Holiday and Gifts section, you can find a booth that promotes a different kind of art medium—paper clay—which is an original idea from the Philippines. Using multi-colored paper clays and two sticks, would-be clay artists can craft their own masterpieces, or they can buy a board with a preset guide instead to help them form beautiful images. Visitors to their booth were able to experience the fun of this new kind of art with as they tried creating images for free after watching the live demo.


2. La Bon Vie

A booth that featured two women from Ilocos demonstrating handloom weaving with their skilled and quick hands and feet caught the attention of many visitors. La Bon Vie Enterprise, owned by actress Dina Bonnevie-Savellano, promotes handloom woven pieces, such as table runners, scarves, shawls, sofa throws, and more, to help revive the industry of Inabel Iloko, a kind of fabric created from delicate hand-weaving using large antique wooden looms. La Bon Vie’s products are all made in the Ilocos provinces.


3. Orient Meadow

Visitors had a lot of fun trying on several colorful fascinators and party hats on display at Orient Meadow, a shop that manufactures fashion accessories and neckwear. The brand also specializes in high-quality ladies straw hats and bags made from indigenous materials, such as pandan, buri, sinamay, buntal, raffia, and sabutan. Their products are also to North America and Europe.


4. Da Pavilion

The food specialty lane of Manila Fame promoted and sold local delicacies and gourmet dishes that were specially packed so you can give them as presents. Products include cookie sticks, a variety of uniquely flavored savory fish in jars, tasty wines, and various types of chocolates and cacao bars—all of which can be tried for free!


5. Walls Gallery

Walls Gallery is a booth featuring bags designed with actual paintings of art students and highly esteemed Filipino artists. These paintings found themselves embellishing various bags and totes, like wine carriers, pieces of luggage, backpacks, laptop bags, and wallets. Having a collection of these bags will make your home look like an art gallery.


6. Shell Arts

Being inside the Shell Arts booth was like stepping into shell heaven. Surrounding the visitors were luxury home décor pieces made of the much-loved capiz shells (windowpane oysters), such as tableware, bathroom accessories, lamps, and wind chimes, among many others.



KILUS is a women’s rights organization that also provides livelihood to less-fortunate women via recycling, reusing, and repurposing of various materials and turning them into useful everyday items such as bags, earrings, pouches, wallets, purses, and necklaces. Through its advocacy, KILUS not only gives these women a means to earn, but also a sense of empowerment.


8. The Red Box

The Red Box is a booth that featured young designers the DTI has mentored through its talent development and mentorship program. These talented designers, namely Rachelle Dagñalan, Joseph Rastrullo, Jim Torres, and Kit Blancas, were challenged to produce spaces that would showcase their artistic interpretations of modern, fresh, and fun ideas related to the given theme Iridescence.


9. Sinag Papel

Organized by the Design Center of the Philippines, this exhibit featured eco-friendly paper lamps that were molded and painted with different colors.


10. Likha Kawayan

Another show by Design Center, Likha Kawayan featured high-quality school chairs made from bamboo.


11. Yabang Pinoy Zone

The Yabang Pinoy zone featured an interesting collection of stores that offer knick-knacks and whatnots, from the aromatic herbal pillows of Kimochi Aroma and the luxurious travel accessories of ANMA, to the quirky bulb-lit statement boxes of ArF Lightboxes.


12. Palawan Lane

Handmade and manufactured special goods were brought to Manila Fame all the way from Palawan, including household and fashion items that highlight the province’s unique and world-class indigenous materials. One item that stood out was a large pawikan-shaped storage piece made entirely of rattan. The item was so sturdy that a full-grown man can sit on it without breaking or deforming it.


Don’t miss the second leg of Manila Fame scheduled to happen from October 20 to 22 at the World Trade Center in Pasay City. For more information, visit the Manila Fame website.


Photos by Mark Cris Bautista

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