Showcase of Negros’ pride in Rockwell TentBy Carla P. Gomez
BACOLOD CITY—Beadwork from old evening gowns, broken tiles from construction sites and hardware stores, soft metal pods that once held single servings of cream in coffee shops and beads from discarded bangles.
These have all been transformed into stylish napkin rings that are part of a varied assortment of table linen collections, bags, mosaic-topped photo frames and folding tables, gilded religious mosaic frames and jewelry to be sold during the 27th Negros Trade Fair at the Rockwell Tent in Makati City from September 26 to 30.
These products are created by the designers and craft makers of the Negrense Volunteers for Change Foundation (NVC), said NVC president and trade fair chair Millie Kilayko.
The NVC items, which will be sold in one of more than 70 booths at the trade fair, were crafted by volunteers to support their Start Right, Live Bright Nutrition Program for infants and toddlers, Kilayko said.
The Foundation’s focus on infants and toddlers stemmed from studies showing that from six months onward, mother’s milk is no longer sufficient to provide an infant with all the nutritional requirements for holistic growth, she said.
Kilayko noted that improved nutrition after age 3 cannot compensate fully for what was lost in the early years.
The 27th Negros Trade Fair is a not-for-profit undertaking of the Association of Negros Producers designed to give small and medium entrepreneurs of Negros a window to Manila and beyond, explained event organizer Alan Gensoli.
Inspired by the theme Beyond Limits, this year’s trade fair will feature innovative products from the five sectors of the ANP: fashion, furniture, gifts and housewares, food, and organic and natural products, Gensoli added.
Three families in the membership of the ANP will celebrate their love for food and desire to share with others the rare delight of culinary secrets handed down through generations.
Papa Daniel, named after the father of Government Security Insurance System (GSIS) chairman Daniel Lacson Jr., features sardines, smoked bangus, unwrapped chorizo and shredded quail meat, which will be sold at the Casa Carmela booth.
They are produced by the GSIS chairman’s wife, Tima Lacson, while her daughter Carla Lacson holds her own with a food business she has started with her cousins.
Using recipes handed down from a generation before, Felicia’s 15-layer gateau de sans rival, chocolate cake and almondette candies are expected to be among the most popular at the Felicia’s booth.
Also to be featured at the trade fair are products of T-Flavors.
Francis Hom, second-generation pickle producer who takes his lead from the vast experience of his mother, Teresita, established the pickle brand T-Flavors.
Teresita Hom, who comes from a brood of 10 good cooks, has been pickling in her family’s ancestral kitchen since she was young.
Their bestsellers include the guinamos bisaya (shrimp paste), tinabal (fish paste) and sinamak (spiced vinegar).
T-Flavors also pickles a range of vegetables, including bamboo shoots, eggplant, bitter gourd and water chestnuts. They also have high-end choices, including preserved fish roe and small crabs, salsa de bacalao (cod fish) and mejillones (mussels).
The products of the famous El Ideal of Silay City, which is run by third-generation Maritess Sanchez, will also be at the trade fair.
Among the most popular products of El Ideal are its guapple pie, coconut pie, empanada, fresh lumpia, classic banyadas and new angel cookies.
Natural products with medicinal properties will also be featured at the trade fair.
Herbanext Laboratories, headed by Ten Outstanding Young Men (TOYM) awardee Philip Cruz, will feature its Sweet Roselle Chips, which won second place from among 22 contenders at the Trendy Awards of the 8th International Food Exhibition.
Herbanext will also make available its nutritious drink Roselle Herb Cooler, Roselle Tea, Roselle Fiber Strips snacks, Roselle Jam and the Roselle-flavored Hydrolean Slimming Drink.
The trade fair will also showcase the creativity of Negrenses.
Doreen Alicia “Reena” Gamboa Pena will unfold creations from now almost extinct Spanish mantillas, intricately hand-embroidered patterns on fine mesh, at her Silay Export’s booth.
Taking off from the lace inspiration that jump-started her new line, Pena’s new collection reflects the country’s Spanish heritage, Gensoli said.
Cris Villacin, on the other hand, will showcase her company’s new collection of chic leather masks with Swarovski crystals, a product line expansion of her leather jewelry. A completely new line of metal accessories will also be launched at the Crisvil booth in this year’s fair, Gensoli said.
“The secret of Cris lies in this, that she always wants her products to be unique. Consequently, every piece looks custom-made,” Gensoli added.
Manon Campos Hernaez’s love affair with the hardware also takes a different twist at her Marayo booth. She has skillfully manipulated hard metal into fashionable accessories.
Artist and entrepreneur Mary Ann Feria Colmenares will feature jelly fish-inspired home tassels, tablecloth weights, and other pieces at her booth.
The trade fair will also feature green functional art creations by artist and sculptor Karl Aguila.
He transforms sunken logs and driftwood, planks from shipwrecks, lumber from demolished antebellum homes, century-old railroad ties, and excavated prime timber into furniture.
These include artistic dining and coffee tables, buffet tables, arm chairs and benches, shelves, apothecaries, and other storage units that will be featured at the Atelier Aguila Booths at the trade fair.
There will be a fashion show at the Power Plant Mall in Makati City staring 6 p.m. on September 27.
“TGIF: It’s MassKara Night” will entertain shoppers at the trade fair at the Rockwell Tent from 4 to 8 p.m. on September 28.
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