Bench Meets the Bench Design Awards 2017 Finalists II


Art by Mags Ocampo

Known far and wide for pushing forward the #LoveLocal movement and mindset, BENCH/ is taking things a step further by giving three designers the chance to showcase their wares on a global stage.

The clothing and lifestyle brand has put together the BENCH/ Design Awards, an open call for clothing designers nationwide. Here, we introduce you to five of the ten lucky finalists that will present their collections at the upcoming BENCH/ Fashion Week as they vie for a chance to showcase their work at Amazon Fashion Week Tokyo S/S 18 this October.

RJ Santos, 27, Fashion Designer and University Lecturer

How would you describe the your personal style?
I’m heavily influenced by MTV during the nineties and noughties. I think this always shows in my designs in a way that it tends to be just fun. I like my designs to [throw in some] humor but at the same time, focus on technique.

What inspires you?
MUSIC, childhood, my family, and accidental ‘fashion moments’—like this time when I saw a guy in a big nylon jacket riding a motorbike and his jacket was filled with air.

What are your three favorite Bench items?
Briefs, ribbed tanks and basic tees.

What are we expecting from your collection on September 10?
Expect something light and fun. Part of my inspiration was our family roadtrips when I was younger, specifically what my parents listened to during those trips.

You can find more of RJ’s work here:
IG and Facebook: @randolfclothing. we’re also available at Purveyr Post now in Makati.


Jaggy Glarino, 30, Fashion Designer

How would you describe your personal style?
My designs are always “inspired”, “unorthodox” and “intuitive.” I draw inspiration from anything but trends and I like liberating techniques. I try to push form and function [to the limit] every time I create and I love to challenge the norms of beauty.

What or who inspires you?
I have a very “volatile” preference in terms of inspiration. I easily get bored or tired of things that might have sparked my interest one second and I may be done with them in the next. Generally though, I am interested in the idea of contrast and dislike. Anything that gives me a certain vibe, feel and energy inspires me—it could be anything or anyone.

What are your three favorite Bench items?
BENCH basics, anything from cotton tees, underwear, colognes to hair moulding clays. I grew up with Bench essentials.

What are we expecting from your collection on September 10?
Expect to witness a collage of my childhood—a collection of things, events or ideas that are very personal to me. I wish to take the audience back to their youth and to indulge them in the “good” in being young and free.

You can find more of Jaggy’s work here:
You may check my brand’s IG @jaggy.homme and @jaggyglarinobridal or follow my personal account @jaggy_glarino for updates.


Diorelle Sy, 30, Fashion Designer

How would you describe your personal style?
I’m a technically driven designer who specializes in menswear tailoring. My works exhibit both modern sophistication and classic craftsmanship. I explore themes of special occasions, nostalgia and coming of age, often taking inspiration from music, films and Sunday-best fashion. I have a deep appreciation for bespoke tailoring and aim to make it more accessible but at the same time preserve old world techniques.

What are your three favorite Bench items?
T-shirts, bench body and, accessories!

What are we expecting from your collection on September 10?

For this collection, I looked into the gangs of the past. It captures the spirit of the Dandies, the Mods, the Peaky Blinders and, the Teddy boys. They were gangsters who wanted to use their clothing to underline their status in the community whilst at the same time separating themselves from the traditional upper-class establishment. They gave fancy dressing a youthful and street vibe.

This collection infuses traditional menswear staples such as sharp suits, crisp shirts and bold trousers with wide lapels, jackets with contrasting trimming, patchwork designs and, male shapes influenced by the 1920s and 1930s.

You can find more of Diorelle’s work here:
Instagram: @diorelle


Esme Palaganas, 24, Designer

How would you describe your personal style?
The style of my designs are strongly driven by a color story and strong silhouettes. My pieces are no fuss and are all about clean lines mixed with surprising textile use. Basic Movement is all about that ‘what you see is what you get’ kind of clothes with hidden surprises. Simple, straightforward, but with a twist.

What or who inspires you?
The Before Trilogy by Richard Linklater, film scores by John Williams (also some works of Charlie Siem), traditional costumes and practices around the world, flower arrangements by florists Simone Gooch and Azuma Makoto, and lately, the textile artworks/thread work of local artist, Nicole Tee

What are your three favorite Bench items?
Bench Basic Shirts, Towel sets, Benchmark!

What are we expecting from your collection on September 10?
The collection to be shown on September 10 is something that is much more emotional than my previous collections, but there is still that strong color story in the line up. Silhouettes are amped up with a bit more of beading and embroidery details. Experimented with surface design for this next one.

You can find more of Esme’s work here:
www.basicmovement.ph
www.instagram.com/basicmovement
Basic Movement Showroom: Appointments can placed via http://basicmovement.ph/showroom


Bea Samson, 29, Fashion Designer – Bea Samson/Paraluman®

How would you describe your personal style?
My designs are a mix of sophisticated, finely crafted, tailored pieces and chic streetwear. Each design is well-thought of, and I draw inspiration from random things, experiences, memories, people, places, and fields of interest such as film, art, and music.

What or who inspires you?
G-dragon, Issey Miyake, Tokyo, street photography, and the Met in New York

What are your three favorite Bench items?
Jeans! (I still have some pairs from when I was in college!); Baby Bench Bubble Gum cologne (been loving this for years), basic cotton shirts

What are we expecting from your collection on September 10?
I’ll be presenting a collection of menswear and womenswear that seeks to engage the senses and inspire wonder with the use of colors, prints, and different fabric treatments. For this collection I created original prints, which I rendered/transformed to show a more dreamlike vision, and/or evoke a sense of movement from otherwise still images. Through the use of these images, each garment in the collection becomes an art piece of and through fashion.

You can find more of Bea’s work here:
I have my personal and brand’s Instagram accounts – @beatricesamson, @bea.samson, and @paraluman_official. I also have my website for my namesake label, www.beasamson.com. I am still working on the website of Paraluman®, www.paralumanstudio.com.

Green and pink made perfect color harmony at BFW Holiday 2017
Bench Meets the Bench Design Awards 2017 Finalists
  • Therry Linatoc

    Congratulations Bea and Diorelle!! We are so proud of you!