‘Piña calado’ fashion

Philippine textile with a Fifth Avenue flair

By Elton Lugay

It’s about time the SAVE Act campaign makes its debut on the runway. Thanks, Manny Pacquiao, for holding the fort, but it’s time the campaign is turned over to people who truly know the textile industry.

Like fashion designer and textile technologist Anthony Cruz Legarda.

Anthony is among the Filipino designers who will participate in the New York Fashion Week on September 13 at the Samsung Experience on Columbus Circle. He will be unveiling his Bloomz clothing collection using Philippine textiles designed with a Fifth Avenue flair.

“Our goal is to spread the message that Philippine piña and other indigenous textiles can compete in the world of high fashion,” said Anthony, known for his eco couture, or the use of hand-woven natural fabric.

Bloomz will also feature fabrics made from American yarns and embellished in the Philippines, which is a push for the proposed SAVE Our Industries Act.

The bill essentially seeks to open the Philippine market for U.S. textiles, and the U.S. market for Philippine-assembled apparel under a preferential trade agreement. Manila is known for its high-quality embroidery — or calado — and embellishments.

“Our mission is to preserve the elaborate and elegant Philippine textiles for generations to come and to encourage the continuation of indigenous Filipino weaving and embellishments,” said Anthony.

“We want to create a branding for the piña to be a world renowned fabric like the Thai silk, Indian cotton, and the Irish linen, as we produce the finest natural and organic fabrics made by master artisans of the Philippines and tailor them into museum and heirloom quality clothing.”


Anthony has a degree in fashion merchandising at the City College of San Francisco and the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York. He has been a featured artist at the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, the Anchorage Museum in Alaska, and the Queens Museum of Art in New York. He is involved with the Manila-based Katutubong Filipino Foundation whose mission is to revive Philippine folk arts and crafts.

He has designed formal wear for former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, and the wives of foreign dignitaries who have visited the Philippines.

Anthony will assume the title of artistic director for the Philippine Textile Research Institute’s 45th anniversary fashion show in January in support of the local textile industry.


  1. […] this article: 'Piña calado' fashion The FilAm This entry was posted in Gloria, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and tagged artistic-director, […]

  2. Cory Arties wrote:

    You really know your stuff… Keep up the good work!

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