Thinking outside the box seems to be Filipino fashion designer Jude Macasinag’s forte.
From gowns and barongs embellished with five-centavo coins to modified bayong with pearls, Jude’s intricate—if not out of this world—designs continue to impress celebrities and global fashion news portals alike.
The latest addition to his list is Vanity Fair France. On Wednesday, June 22, Macasinag announced in a Facebook post that his work was featured on the international magazine's website.
Quoting the article translated into English, his caption read, “Fashion is no longer a matter of shop: it is lived both in the workshop and in a gallery-style space, is adorned with quilted effects that accentuate the couture dimension, a sophistication also highlighted by the return of the fetish accessory of feminine elegance: the glove.” It added that this is the credo of the Klein blue look (glitter on skin) created by Macasinag.
The Pinoy fashion design scholar shared a closer look at his work in an Instagram post on June 4. Macasinag said that it was part of his collection titled Manifesto, which was showcased during their class' graduation show.
In a separate Facebook post, Masinag said that the show's front row seats featured key personalities in the French fashion industry, including Brigitte Macron (First Lady of France), Bruno Pavlovsky (CEO of Chanel), Sidney Toledano (CEO of LVMH), and French fashion designer Isabel Marant.
More than his acclaimed works as a fashion student at Institut Français de la Mode, the France-based Filipino designer has also dressed Nadine Lustre, Alaiza Malinao, Pia Wurtzbach, and Iza Calzado in the pivotal moments of these women’s respective careers.
In her Wildest Dreams visual album, Nadine wore Macasinag’s “Figure 1.6” gold-embellished dress, which was part of the latter’s Suvarnadvipa series from 2018. According to Macasinag, the dress acts as a retelling of the pages of the Boxer Codex (a late sixteenth century Spanish manuscript), which depicts the “sense of spirituality in self, nature, and heavenly beings” of pre-colonial Filipinos.
Former Miss Universe Philippines finalist Alaiza Malinao wore Macasinag’s Kinnari liquid gold dress during the competition's preliminary round. The dress was made from aluminum material with tiny metal plates “meticulously linked and unlinked one by one” at the exact measurement of Alaiza’s figure. It took more than 500 hours of pure handwork.
For Macasinag, the dress was an ode to the Kinnari vessel unearthed in Mindanao which “personifies the feminine ideals of beauty, grace, and accomplishment.”
Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurzbach shone brightly while sporting the glitzy Sunburst Barong for the cover story of a local fashion magazine in 2020. The masterpiece was also worn by Macasinag during his high school graduation at Philippine High School for the Arts in Mt. Makiling, Laguna.
In an Instagram post in 2018, Jude greeted actress Iza Calzado with a happy birthday along with a throwback picture of the actress wearing his pearl-encrusted, Barong-inspired jacket and asymmetrical pleated skirt for the Ani Ng Dangal awards that year. Macasinag said that Iza was one of the women who made him feel worthy of being believed in.
Macasinag moved to Paris to study at the Institut Français de la Mode in late 2019. He was 19 years old at that time and has since been exhibiting his works in museums and fairs in the Philippines and abroad. He is now set to take Masters of Fine Arts in Fashion Design in the same school.