Flores de Mayo or Flowers of May has always been an iconic Filipino tradition. Held in honor for the Blessed Virgin Mary, this religious celebration dates back to the 19th century by floral offerings made by Filipina girls to the local parish churches. Fast forward to today and it has progressed into a major parade showcasing our Filipino heritage and culture.
This tradition has continued to be prevalent in Filipino society for more than three decades in courtesy of Congregacion del Santisimo Nombre del Niño Jesus, founded by the very own dean of Philippine fashion, Mr. Ben Farrales. It has become one of the major tourist attractions in Manila in which both religious observers and fashion enthusiasts look forward to during the summer season.
To welcome the month of May, a grand fashionable parade of sagalas will be held in May 5, Sunday at 4:30pm at the Music Hall of SM Mall of Asia. This event will feature 30 ladies dressed in the finest and exquisite gowns created by the top designers of the country. This year’s theme of “Colors of Mindanao” will feature designers’ fashion interpretations that evoke the exotic lands down south of the Philippines.
The region’s vibrant culture, majestic panorama of vintas, the varied flora and fauna, bejeweled women donning the intricate trinkets and ornaments of its craftsmen has paved the way to be continuingly interpreted in fashion as an art. The theme also pays special tribute to the roots of Ben Farrales for continuously spearheading the preservation of Filipino culture and his significant contributions to the fashion industry for almost sixty years.
Competing for the top title of Rosa Mystica or Mystical Rose will be creations from the country’s top designers including Ivan dela Cruz, Buddy Reyes, Obet Orajay, Fanny Serrano, Edgar Allan, Pepe Quitco, Jon Fernando, Danilo Franco, Arielle Agasang, Edwin Tan, Johnny Abad, Renee Salud, Ole Morabe, Edwin Uy, Steve de Leon, Christopher Quejano, Richard Papa, Rholand Roxas, Frederick Peralta, Edgar Madamba, Leslie Rivera, Rey Lazaro, Pencil Diestra, Rikko Escaro, Pepsi Herrera, Edgar San Diego, Jontie Martinez, Francis Calaquian, Gener Gozum and Lito Perez. Other awards include Magandang Pilipina, La Flor de Manila and Reina de las Flores.
Congregacion members present during the event are Chairman Jing Chua, President Jesse Nell, Vice-President Steve de Leon, Secretary Dennis Maturan, Treasurer Venson Nobrera and other members including Nolie Hans, Donnie Delima, Dingdong Bautista, Toni Galang and Totoy Bayabo.
The designer’s sketches were revealed in a preview gathering in Casino Español in Manila. Guests also got a chance to see what to expect in the grand parade with a fashion show featuring the designs of Ben Farrales. Apples Aberin, Unilever’s very own head of PR and recognized figure in the fashion industry, was one of the models present in the preview gathering.
Flores de Mayo 2013 “Colors of Mindanao” is a production of the Congregacion del Santisimo Nombre del Niño Jesus, the City of Pasay, Creamsilk, and SM Mall of Asia together with Unilever Philippines. The grand parade on May 5 will be hosted by Boots Anson-Roa.