The Philippine weaving industry is one constantly overlooked given the amount of effort, skill, and heart they pour into the work they do. A struggling industry that doesn’t always get the recognition they deserve, it becomes especially significant when persons of note give them their time in the limelight. Which is why we stan celebrities and influencers who support the craft, like Heart Evangelista.
Heart recently posted a new look on her Instagram account, featuring a T’nalak jacket as the pièce de résistance. The jacket is a creation of Davao-based designer Steffy de Mylo who places Mindanaoan fabric at the center of her art.
Much of De Mylo’s pieces put T’nalak weaving at the forefront, a weaving tradition originating from South Cotabato’s T’boli indigenous people group. The cloth is woven from abaca fibers and typically takes on the colors of red, black and that of the Abaca leaves. Its patterns are said to be based on the dreams of the T’nalak weavers with the final designs being ‘spirit infused’. Their weavers are even known as ‘dream weavers’, which is an apt title given the dreamy designs they create.
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