It was an honor to once again grace the runway during last season’s London Fashion Week under Oxford Fashion Studio. The show held last September 14, 2018, in Devonshire Square in Central London, was an experience of a lifetime. Closing the show as the only Filipino fashion design label in a group of international names was a feat in itself. And we will forever be thankful for the opportunity.

But being in an industry claimed by many as the main cause of a lot of environmental pollution, we have time and again been trying to bridge the gap between luxury and sustainability. The Audrey Albason brand believes that handmade luxury is key. That sustainability means better-made clothes and mindful production. Entitled, “Pagla-um” or “Hope” in the native Filipino dialect of Hiligaynon – this collection is inspired by the rich diversity of marine life found in the Philippines. Its corals and sea creatures in a bed of pristine whites and subtle grays.

Incorporating local weaves such as fine Aklan Piña (handwoven pineapple fiber) and Miag-ao Hablon (handwoven cotton) with more commercially available fabrics like lace and silk gazaar – Pagla-um is a collection aptly named with the hope of bringing the local century-old weaving practice endemic to a small Philippine island like Panay to the global consciousness. The almost monochromatic palette is highlighted by a handcrafted corded rope with faux pearl details and beaded macrame fringed tulle accents – light and heavy in one breath. With issues such as climate change and the move towards more sustainable living taking center stage – it is with high hopes that the revival of this woven art form and the appreciation for slow fashion- may easily find relevance in the present international stage. There is Pagla-um. There is hope.