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PhilFrance Fashion Week highlights French couture

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On Thursday, February 16, the Embassy of France to the Philippines kicked off the 70th anniversary celebration of French-Philippine diplomatic relations this year via the PhilFrance Fashion Week.



Photo by: BusinessMirror


Setting into motion of the yearlong festival, billed “PhilFrance: Feel French!”, the SM Aura Premier was set in distinctive French flair as it played host to the fashion festival.


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In partnership with the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde, the weeklong event, which started on February 13, aimed at bringing French fashion and design to Filipinos through a series of shows, workshops and an exhibit of original pieces from iconic couturiers, such as Jean-Paul Gaultier and Yves Saint Laurent.


Beau Travail


As a contemporary designer in Lille, northern France, Clivia Nobili has made her name through her “work wear” collection, which fuses style and functionality. She began her career in the fashion industry as press assistant of Yohji Yamamoto in Paris.


Later, she trained at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York and at the Ecole IICC in Marseille. After receiving a series of recognitions, such as the First Prize of the Biennale of Young Designers of Europe and Mediterranean (1999), the Elle Prize in Belgium (2011), the Grand Prize of the Fédération Française de la Couture du Prêt-à-Porter and the First Prize of the Acte Fashion Awards (2012), Nobili opened her first self-named boutique in Lille in 2014.


She characterizes her pieces as a “creative homage to utilitarian clothes for men and women,” presenting a contemporary elegance and practicality for today’s workers. The Opéra of Lille and the Grand Palais of Lille, among others, currently carry her style of work wear.


During the PhilFrance Fashion Week, Nobili presented her latest Beau Travail work wear collection on the runway in fashion shows which were staged at the School of Design and Arts of the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde also on February 13 and three days later at the Upper Ground Atrium of SM Aura Premier.


The Beau Travail work wear collection will be on exhibit until February 19 at the same venue in SM Aura.


Fashion through the decades


Meanwhile, an exhibit curated by Frédéric Delhove featuring original pieces from various French fashion icons were, likewise, flown in from various museums in France. It showcased and evolution of designs in the last few decades to fit the changing lifestyles of the times.


It includes valuable creations by the likes of Yves Saint Laurent, Jean-Paul Gaultier and Jeanne Lanvin—French designers who have changed the landscape of fashion in the 20th century.


Also on exhibit are pieces from John Galliano, who was former head designer of French fashion companies Christian Dior and Givenchy; Jean Charles de Castelbajac, who is known for his pop-art clothing designs; Marithé+François Girbaud; siblings Anna and Tumoas Laitinen; as well as Daniel Jasiak.


The exhibit will run until March 18 at the eighth floor of the School of Design and Arts of the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde.


The PhilFrance Fashion Week was organized by the Embassy of France to the Philippines, the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde and SM Aura Premier, with the support of Air France-KLM, Marithé François Girbaud, L’Officiel Manila, La Piscine Musuem in Roubaix, France and Jean-Paul Gaultier.


70 years of friendship


The PhilFrance Fashion Week is the inaugural event of “PhilFrance: Feel French!” festival. It commemorated 70 years of diplomatic relations between France and the Philippines this year, which was formalized through the signing of the two country’s Treaty of Friendship on June 26, 1947.


Throughout 2017, the Embassy of France to the Philippines and its partners will organize a series of events that will give the Filipino public an opportunity to “feel France” in five key aspects: arts and culture, art de vivre, the youth and knowledge, high tech and Entrepreneurship, as well as sharing values.


The line-up includes the following events within the year, among others:

  • Francophonie Week, a celebration of the French language (in March)
  • Goût de France (or “Good France”), a celebration of French gastronomy (March)
  • French Film Festival (June)
  • Fête de la Musique (June)
  • Ravel Unraveled: A French classical music concert by French pianist François Chaplin and the Philippine Philharmonic orchestra (June)
  • Tour de Manille: a cycling event that coincides with the Tour de France (July)
  • Bon Appétit: A French market in Manila (September)
  • A job fair and employability forum for the underprivileged youth (September)
  • French Volunteerism Day (October)

A series of conferences on architecture and urbanism, agriculture and food security, social sciences, and women’s rights


Networking events, business meetings and start-up programs involving the French business community




For more information on “PhilFrance: Feel French!”, visit or follow the Embassy of France to the Philippines on social media at and


This article was originally published by our media partner BusinessMirror:
PhilFrance Fashion Week highlights French couture
by BusinessMirror  |  Published: 19 Feb. 2017



Author: BusinessMirror
Photo source:
Top photo – by Clivia Nobili for BusinessMirror






  1. I visited SM Aura for these shows. It was awesome! #ILoveFrenchFashion