long live olive

i am giriish

painter, writer,
designer, martial artist,

and these are my jottings...

TAIWAN... Tea,Temples and Twining Cherry Blossoms

Intertwining cherry blossoms…fragrant, fragile and soul inspiring…guided me along the path at The Lingxiao Chapel of Chi Nan Temple and The Jiu Tian Temple in Miao Li County where I ascended all 606 arduous steps with a wooden statue of Taoist saint San Nai Fu Ren cradled in my arms. 

Margette’s Indian Summer

Margette’s table setting of blue and white Limoge china, centerpiece foliage with peacock feathers on top of mandala design table cloth

Cebu’s most evolved host and my favorite yoga teacher Margette Sarmiento recently came back from a month-long training at an ashram in Kerala, Southern India. She invited her closest friends and this jotter to an Ayurvedic dinner at her Maria Luisa home. The indian summer soiree was to celebrate her return and, at the same time,  as “despedida” for Jiji Gulllas and my publisher Eva who are going on a European hiatus.

The Magical Glow of ANGKORIAN AETHER

In 2004, my good friend Jing Ramos and I flew to Siem Reap, Cambodia to see the temples. We stayed at a private home owned by a couple of educators and moved to Grand Hotel d’Angkor on our last day. 

Devatas @ Angkor Wat

There, we saw portraits of the hotel’s famous guests: Somerset Maugham, Charlie Chaplin, so on and so forth… Transfixing us however, were images of Lee Radziwill and Jackie O. Thus on our last day, we traveled to BANTEAY SREI, the Temple for Women, and took on the roles of the two sisters.

My recent holiday collection for FashionWatch called ANGKORIAN AETHER is colored by our adventures, and misadventures in that holy land of Devatas and Apsaras…


A stickler for economy of lines I found myself engrossed with the minimal and somehow simian design of Vibram Five Fingers, named one of the best inventions by TIME Magazine in 2007. I own a number of huge, bulky high-tops that I mainly use with shorts, skinny or drop-crotch jeans but admittedly, they’re more for looks than function.  For comfort, I use minimalist Nike Free and Lunarlite @ the gym and yet these two pairs look nothing like  Vibram’s FiveFive Fingers Classic (seemingly morphed ballet slippers) and the KSO (Keep Stuff Out) with their five-toe pouches.

I’ve read so much about the trend and benefits of bare-foot training for runners, and outdoors bare-footing from athletes, enthusiasts and physiologists on the net. It all sounded like sales talk to me, anyhow, after a call to Carlos Alvarez for directions to their outlet at Rockwell, I sought out to experience the truth about this barefoot phenomenon myself.

if i ...

...... were an elderly impolite white man who has burned too many bridges in Hongkong and in Cebu, would I elicit disfavor from this city’s respected grand dames by maligning them? Recently, the above mentioned aging social mountaineer  (let’s call him Ripley) had a heated exchange of words with another guest at a wedding reception after he disapproved of what the guest wore at a previous party. When the guest told Ripley that he was in no position to publicly and rudely ridicule what he chose to wear, and that he should be more careful with his words especially when he is around Cebu’s genteel ladies, Ripley retorted: “oh, those old women don’t know fashion anyway. They haven’t traveled enough, so why should I even care?”

Inno @ 30

In 1995, my closest designer friends in Cebu Jun Escario and Jojo Romoff insisted that we travel together to Manila to watch the fashion gala “Inno Sotto: Anno XV.” Top model Suyen Chi had gotten us three tickets, and the prospect of seeing Inno’s  15th year collection mesmerized us, thus we packed our suits and headed for the capital.

Art of Kaiseki Cuisine @ Nadaman

Kaiseki or Kaiseki-ryori, is a traditional multi-course Japanese meal, which puts emphasis on artistry, graciousness and the changing of the seasons. It also refers to the collection of skills and techniques that allow the preparation of such sumptuous exclusive meals analogous to Western haute cuisine.
The Valera Redux

Design genius Ramon Valera, the first National Artist for Fashion, is celebrated in a 24-piece ready to wear collection by Freeway, a local brand that offers clothing and accessories that follow current international trends at reasonable price points. Valera’s signature creative cut, grand silhouette, unusual colorization, and opulent but tasteful embellishment are reinterpreted and given renewed relevance in the company’s Valera, National Artist Collection-- the fourth installment of Freeway’s successful National Artist Collectors Series.
Style-Spotting @ Japan Fashion Week 2010 

(Part IV)

I saved the best for last---this is the ultimate installment of your jotter’s style – spottings @ Japan Fashion Week.

Meeting this unassuming designer was worth the unmanageably hectic schedule and the flight anxiety one had to go through.

I wore my favorite gold trainers that he designed for Puma and congratulated him after the show for designing the best Fall-Winter 2010, collection on the Tokyo runway.

Every piece that came out was polished and esthetically appealing.

The soft, suede boots that the girls wore draped around the shin and ankles looked beautiful with their short sack skirts. 
The extra long cable knit for men elongated the look of lean wool pants and washed chambray shirts. 
A wool jacket with large shawl collar worn over a beaded vest, grey chiffon shirt, ikat-print shorts and deep brown combat boots makes for a youthful winter. 
The open knit-work on dresses, tunics, and pants gave garments a poetic, disheveled appeal that complimented the girls’ hair and makeup. 

Yasuhiro is indeed an artist;
 his chosen medium is fashion.