Meet the 11 Fashion Designers Behind Sinulid 2023: Renascence


March 28, 2023
Read Time: 5 minutes

The recently concluded “Sinulid 2023: Renascence” showcases a promising roster of fashion designers



“Look good, feel good” is a piece of advice that withstands the test of time. When everything is too much and our mood is just impossible to fix, wearing clothes that allow us to feel like ourselves can give us that needed confidence boost. The clothes that we put on first thing in the morning can determine how we face the rest of our day (so there’s no need to feel guilty for taking that extra time to get ready).



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The graduating students of the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde’s Fashion Design program certainly agree with this. After all, they’re dedicating their careers to creating clothes that can help people better express themselves! Last March 23, the 11 seniors presented their works during Sinulid 2023: Renascence, the college’s annual fashion show and exhibit, which is also the students’ thesis. Get to know them and their inspirations and aspirations as fashion designers!


Andrei Sumpayco

Collection: Chaos Equilibrium

Award: Emerging Creative Designer


Inspiration is truly everywhere as the theme of Andrei Sumpayco’s collection is derived from societal issues, specifically, overwork death. During a one-on-one with Wonder, he shares, “Fashion or clothing is the best way to express yourself.” 


There’s no denying that we are all prone to experiencing burnout. This explains why his key pieces are suits usually worn by those working a nine-to-five.



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When asked how to avoid burnout, Andrei simply states: “You don’t.” He explains, “We all get tired, and what’s going to drive you or raise you up from burning out is that you just keep doing what you love.” 


He adds, “We can’t do everything alone.” It’s important to have a solid support system. As someone who is a delayed student because of burnout, it’s a full-circle moment for Andrei to be using it as the theme of his final collection in school. Truly, rest pays off as Chaos Equilibrium has led him to be recognized as the batch’s Emerging Creative Designer.


Fred Leysa

Collection: Nocturne

Award: Creative Excellence


Escapism is the key term to describe Fred Leysa’s collection. “My goal with my fashion is to try and give people an escape from the real world where we face a lot of problems because [I feel like] if you’re able to take people away from [real world] problems through your creativity, then you’re really doing something amazing with your art.”



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Fred’s designs are almost hypnotic with their impeccable structure and whimsical patterns. On the topic of nightmares and reality, Fred shares that his dream for himself as a designer “is really to have fun because being in fashion is a privilege, despite what people think.” 


He explains further, “When you do have that privilege and you’re able to acknowledge it, it’s your job to do the most [of] what’s given to you and really take it out there. Be innovative, make something new, and just have fun.” He also dreams of more global recognition for Filipino talent, and his collection is enough to prove how much our homegrown designers deserve it.


Dars Juson

Collection: REPAMANA

Award: Creative Excellence


“If something can’t be used or worn again, then I don’t want it.” This is Dars Juson’s fashion philosophy, which is flawlessly showcased in his collection. Garments get passed from generation to generation, which highlights the importance of tracing back to the root of every work. Dars focuses on reviving discarded fabrics, upcycling textiles and sourcing natural dye.



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REPAMANA is reminiscent of patchworks, playing around with tie-backs and tassels—all of which beautifully embrace the human body. Clothing truly is a medium of storytelling. For Dars, using post-consumer waste will become the norm in creating items in the future.


Angelica Alegre

Collection: Mariposa

Award: Creative Excellence


We are surrounded by nature, which means we are also surrounded by unique patterns that are difficult to mimic, but Angelica does it with ease. Her collection specifically takes inspiration from the coloration and structure of butterflies. It won’t be difficult to spot her work—not with her distinct silhouettes.



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Angelica’s work encapsulate what it means to be feminine, artistic and surreal. Whether one has an eye for fashion or not, her skill in surface technique cannot be denied.


Tonie Soyangco

Collection: Captivating Capiz


The Philippines is rich in potential, which not only refers to talent but resources, too. Captivating Capiz is Tonie Soyangco’s call for help for Bataan’s dying capiz shell industry.



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Through this collection, the elegance, versatility and wearability of Capiz are showcased. Tonie dedicates her work to raising social awareness, supporting local produce and contributing to sustainable fashion. 


Gabriel Buenabajo

Collection: Vestimentum


Gabriel Buenabajo took us to church with his creations that take inspiration from liturgical vestments during Lent. With his glamorized interpretation, we can’t help but think of the theme of the iconic 2018 Met Gala, Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination.



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Two words to describe the collection: regal and lustrous. We also love how Gabriel dedicated his platform to promoting a local art method from Pampanga called pukpuk (to hammer).


Shazy Barachina

Collection: Stuck in 2.5


Through Stuck in 2.5, Shazy Barachina pays homage to the art form that has strengthened her through the years: anime. Reality-meets-fictional as seen in the stylized bows, sleeves, collars and neckties 


RELATED: Things I Learned About Anime From My Otaku Boyfriend



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Corven Uy

Collection: Public Display of Affection


Our clothes are our second skin, which is why it’s important to have a good relationship with the fabrics that touch us. Public Display of Affection is Corven Uy’s way of showcasing this understanding.



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The message was certainly sent with the cutouts and undergarments involved in the collection. Most of Corven’s creations are heat-reactive as well, and are designed to be interacted with. Each act of physical intimacy makes the garments more and more beautiful.


Arielha Castillo

Collection: Ticking Time Bomb


Ticking Time Bomb is a fitting name for Arielha Castillo’s creations. Her designs are centered on frozen methane and climate change. Since the fashion industry is one of the biggest contributors to the very problem that she hopes to raise awareness on, she reveals that pieces from her collection are actually made from trash.



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“All the fabrics that you see, it’s all deadstock,” explains Arielha. She used fabrics that she personally laundered until they were good as new. As a designer, she aims to push boundaries and prove that one can create something out of nothing. After all, she states, “Everything can be fashion.”


Sophia Fuentebella

Collection: I see Euphoria


Being inspired by pop culture is one thing, but bringing it to reality is another. Sophia aims to present how we all have a façade of glamor that our real selves hide behind—shown in the HBO series Euphoria.



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The jewels and sparkles in every piece can light up any room, but the pieces actually tell stories about dealing with personal battles and covering them with so much pizzazz—and still ending up wanting to be heard and seen.


Chryssha Lee

Collection: Atypical


Atypical encapsulates Chryssha Lee’s collection as she tackles tattoo culture, which is a taboo topic in a conservative country like ours (rolling my eyes at you for this still, Philippines).



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For Chryssha, our skin makes a beautiful canvas. Looking past the stereotypes, tattoos are an elegant form of self-expression, and each one is a masterpiece.


RELATED: Ink-spo and Ink Envy: Tattoos That Seriously Make Us Want to Get Inked


Sinulid 2023: Renascence captures revival. It can be seen in the rebirth of dead fabric, the emergence of sustainability and the overflowing potential of each student. It’s safe to say that the future of fashion is not hanging by a thread.




Words Kyla Villena

Art Matthew Ian Fetalver

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