Season after season, Criselda Lontok, known as “society women’s favorite ready-to-wear designer,” has kept her patrons happy with stylish pieces that celebrate their stature in life.
But while set as the go-to label of an older generation of women—accomplished professionals, mothers who have raised successful broods, as well as ladies of leisure—the fashion house has taken on a refreshing challenge for its Holiday 2017 collection to entice a younger clientele.
Turning to the timeless inspiration of flowers for this landmark collection, Lontok keeps her trademark touches of elegance in a romantic suite titled “Life in Bloom.”
The 60-piece collection gathers an abundance of florals in an endearing palette evoking eternal Spring. Flowers are boldly incorporated as prints, intricate embroidery, appliqués and other stylish interpretations. As for fabrics, Lontok went with her favorites—jacquard, soft rich lace, organza, Mikado and chiffon creating romantic silhouettes for her clients.
From dresses, dustcoats, or gowns, she also captures the romantic mood of Spring with a transitional palette of crimson, deep pinks, vibrant jewels tones and creams against black-as-night backgrounds.
“I would say that my inspiration in this collection is nature in general with all the bright and jewel colors. What is different this time is that we have more daring cuts—we have the off shoulder, strapless gowns and dresses. Before didn’t we didn’t have these, but now, we’re coming out with a size six so we can also capture the younger group,” Lontok told The Manila Times, elaborating on the fashion house’s new direction.
“On a more personal note, I find that nature, most especially blooms, give me the most profound joy. Just seeing fresh flowers, touching their petals, and smelling their sweet scents instantly lift my spirits. With all that’s happening today, I believe that we have to constantly remind ourselves to be positive, and what better way to do that than through what we wear,” she added.
With over three decades in the industry, Lontok’s in-house brand Criselda has been thriving since 1983. Asked for her secret to longevity in the local fashion industry, she cites a strong instinct in knowing what women want to wear—how they want to look good and feel good about themselves in dressing up.
Indeed, Lontok designs every piece with a classic feminine sensibility that has been loved by many generations of Filipinas. To this day, she still understands a woman’s fashion needs, masterfully interpreting them into timeless, elegant designs.
“The brand has been here for the past 34 years so it is always a challenge to keep up with the trend. If I can satisfy the customers, then we are very successful. My sales have always been very good—I am always in the Top 5 for sales [in Rustan’s]so I am thankful for that. It’s always nice to hear that your customers are happy and that too gives me a lot of inspiration,” the designer enthused.
“My designs—while conservative and for the sophisticated woman—is always playful and exciting, especially now. At the core, my clients and myself are lovers of love and life, and so we should celebrate that in ways that bring us the most joy,” Lontok ended.