When The Ladies of Manila want to look unbelievably unlike themselves…  

Who are they going to call???

Their Couturiers.



  1. Gerardo Chuidian said,

    August 25, 2014 at 8:34 am

    Lolo Telesforo was supposedly helped by a certain Vicente Casas, would anyone know if what nature this help was ? please pardon the cryptic nature of the question. Its just I heard someone say it in passing in a conversation between strangers. I didnt have a chance to question them as I was invovlved in a meeting in the adjacent table. I am the eldest son of the late Pedro Chuidian Sr., Son of Horacio Chuidian sr. Who is the son of Telesforo Chuidian. thanks in advance for any info on this.

  2. September 28, 2012 at 7:54 am

    […] Couturier « remembrance of things awryJun 22, 2007 … Conchita Chuidian Sunico was PreWar Manila’s “Golden Girl” and it was a distinction she was to carry all her life. Back then, Family … […]


    November 21, 2010 at 12:21 am

    I happened to read Post # 47 & 48 (Tomas L.Sunico Eleizegui). I am Isabel Elazegui Nepomuceno,5th generation of TOMAS ELAZEGUI. A lady from Basque (Spain) said that Elazegui may have been altered to Elizegui (or Eleizegui, I am not sure of this one. Quite a few people here in Chicago who came from Spain made the same remark, and that there is a street in Spain named similarly. ELAZEGUI is quite unique. A nephew of Dr. Jose Rizal,our hero, years ago recognized me, by namesake, as a resident of Calamba , Laguna. I also met a lady,with the same name, from Ilocos. At present my family, esp. the young once, are digging up our roots; over 100 registered in our web site, dots have yet to be connected. I am 84yrs. old, last remaining “archivist”. Please help.

  4. Tisha Sunico said,

    March 24, 2010 at 8:19 am

    Sorry for the typographical error (merlie and I had a great greandfather named victor sunico….) it is supposed to be “I had a great grandfather”… merlie sunico-rhodes do you have an email or contact number so I can call you? one of the sunico patriarch domingo sunico went to the visayas. you are a big clue about some sunico family members who cannot be traced. I have so many questions to ask to you.

  5. Tisha Sunico said,

    March 14, 2010 at 6:35 pm

    I’m from Pavia, Iloilo. Merlie and I had a great grandfather named Victor Sunico who hailed from Sta. Barbara, Iloilo and who migrated later on to La Carlota, Negros Occidental. His son, Timoteo Sunico, was born in Negros. Sunico is a Spanish surname NOT a Chinese surname. It was one of the surnames brought by the Spaniards when they christianized us. I have recently contacted some Sunicos and they said that the surname was really Chanuangco who adopted Sunico as their surname.

  6. Merlie Sunico-Rhodes said,

    January 18, 2010 at 1:13 am

    The Sunico is a special and rare surname in the history of the Philippines. What was its origin?

  7. Merlie Sunico-Rhodes said,

    January 18, 2010 at 1:11 am

    My Sunico family hails from the Ilocos. According to my father, my grandfather had a brother who migrated to the Visayan islands. Some Sunico changed their last name to Sonico. The Chinese surname was SONG CO.

  8. Merlie Sunico-Rhodes said,

    January 18, 2010 at 1:07 am

    My sister has a resemblance to the late Conching Sunico. My family is Ilocano from Cabugao, Ilocos Sur. My paternal grandfather was Don Petronilo Sunico and my paternal grandmother was Dona Eustaquia Sumuba of Camiling, Tarlac. Mimi Santos is my father’s cousin.

  9. October 13, 2009 at 9:00 am


    I have no idea.

    So, Don Telesforo Chuidian also had a “Shrunken Head.” Interesting.

    All this time, the only “Shrunken Head” I knew of in a Philippine collection was that of the Escuderos in their AERA Collection [ second floor of the AERA Museum, on the right in a glass-fronted cabinet ] at their Villa straddling San Pablo, Laguna and Tiaong, Quezon. If I remember right, it is the head of a Colombian Indian. It was the biggest scary thrill for us Gonzalez children whenever we visited the private museum of the Escuderos in the 1970s.

    Toto Gonzalez

  10. Presy Guevara said,

    October 12, 2009 at 8:54 pm

    Paquito or Toto: Does anyone of you know what happened to the collection of Don Telesforo Chuidian? While he was yet the Adminstrator of Hacienda de Nasugbu, he owned several vitrines holding memorabilia from around the world. His grandchild Vicente once pointed to me an actual shrunken head from a cannibalistic tribe encased in one of those vitrines. It impressed me much at that moment that a human head could be reduced to a size smaller than a baseball.

  11. October 12, 2009 at 5:55 pm


    I honestly don’t know. I have not come across an “official” Chuidian family tree.

    I will keep looking though… 🙂

    Toto Gonzalez

  12. Alex Castro said,

    October 12, 2009 at 4:18 am

    Hi, toto. Would you know any info about Jose “Johnny” Chuidian? Is he one of the sons of Telesforo, who had several children with different women, I was told. Jose was a consort of Manolita Barretto, who was once a carnival queen.

  13. May 23, 2008 at 12:41 pm


    Those are big clans in Capiz province.

    Certainly among the most prominent members was President Manuel Acuna Roxas.

    Also, according to Don Salvador Araneta y Zaragoza, the Roxas of Capiz are descended from the Roxas of Manila. He also wrote that Dona Margarita Roxas de Ayala tasked her relative _____ Roxas to administer her “nipa” “hacienda” in Capiz.

    Lots of connections there…

    Toto Gonzalez

  14. Tony Viterbo said,

    May 23, 2008 at 4:15 am

    I enjoy reading everything……….but i wonder if you some information about the ACUNA-HERNANDEZ-ROXAS-VITERBO of CAPIZ.

  15. LCIN said,

    April 1, 2008 at 3:17 am

    Funny story: My lola cut two of my mom’s Ramon Valera gowns into pieces and had them made into sewing machine covers. The other smaller pieces were used as dust cloths. Imagine the verbal exchange that ensued when mom arrived from one of her travels abroad. hehehe, I can’t imagine how mom would have felt if those were the Pitoy Moreno gowns.

  16. October 28, 2007 at 3:00 pm


    Thank you for finding your way here.

    Conchita Chuidian Sunico was PreWar Manila’s “Golden Girl” and it was a distinction she was to carry all her life. Back then, Family Background was All, and “Tita Conching,” being a Sunico and a Chuidian, embodied the best and the finest of the ladies of her class.

    In Filipino Social History — far from his implication in revolutionary activities — the name of Don Telesforo Chuidian conjures the immense Chinese wealth, Spanish splendor, and French elegance of late 1800s Filipinas.

    Yes, there is a good-size community of Filipinos in Vancouver. I have a dear friend — a descendant of several grand Manila and Iloilo familes — who lives high up over Stanley Park and She, her relatives, and friends in Vancouver are regular readers of this blog.


    Toto Gonzalez

  17. October 28, 2007 at 2:53 am

    It was nice to hear about Tita Conching who happens to be the sister of my mother. Yes I recognize the photos as well.

    Tommy Eleizegui

  18. Tomas L. Sunico Eleizegui said,

    October 28, 2007 at 2:33 am

    It is nice to hear some good things about my family. I live in British Columbia Canada and would like to keep in touch. I could have identified the ladies in the photo. By the way there is a good size Filipino community in Vancouver. Maybe we can keep in touch.

    Tommy Eleizegui

  19. Garganta Inflamada said,

    September 2, 2007 at 9:01 pm

    xxxx said:

    Again, I don’t like this G.I. Que verdadera inflamada la garganta eres.


    ***Sticks out tongue in a BBBBIIIIIIIIIGGGG way!!*** 🙂 🙂

  20. sdffvfgv said,

    August 15, 2007 at 6:03 am

    Again, I don’t like this G.I. Que verdadera inflamada la garganta eres.

  21. July 12, 2007 at 10:00 am

    Paul Karis:

    Sometimes, there are genuine, vintage gowns / dresses by THE Ramon Valera at the “Katutubo” Arts & Crafts Shop of Ramon Villegas at the LaO’ Center on Arnaiz Avenue, Makati City. At a premium, of course, as they are much sought after as reference material by Manila’s leading fashion designers.

    Toto Gonzalez

  22. Paul Karis said,

    July 11, 2007 at 10:12 pm

    Dear Bloggers

    Came across your conversation while searching for more details about Ramon Valera – fashion designer.
    Who might sell his museum creations?

  23. zippo said,

    July 11, 2007 at 2:10 pm

    whooops, I meant walking on her knees towards the ALTAR

    Z 🙂

  24. zippo said,

    July 11, 2007 at 8:10 am

    G. I.

    I remember that picture of IRM walking on her knees towards the aisle in St. Patrick’s while holding her rosary. It was splashed all over the front pages of the various Big Apple rags like the NY Post, The Daily News, etc.

    Z 🙂

  25. Garganta Inflamada said,

    July 11, 2007 at 6:43 am

    zippo wrote: Speaking of the Madrigals, I just saw Tita Ising M-V at the 7 am mass today. Very low key. Never calls attention to herself but always with a ready smile when you greet her.


    How true. Many years ago, she & Danny would slip quietly in the side of Mary the Queen Church (over near Xavier) and stand there quietly even when the pews were already full.

    UNLIKE the Queen of Artifice and Hypocrisy who, even before her truly pathetic ‘pa-luhod palabas’ at venerable St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City (after the retarded jury absolved her of the NY charges), practiced her bastardising Mass for grandstanding purposes.

    It was around September 1965, around the height of the Macapagal-Marcos-Manglapus derby. The setting was the big Carmel Church in New Manila. Communion was almost finished. People were quietly returning to their seats when who should walk from the back of the church, in vulgar fly-eye sunglasses no less, towards the altar but this big woman who looked like, well the wife of the Nacionalista Ilocano candidate for President? Heads, of course, turned and there was a palpable hubbub in the crowd. “Ay, si Imelda Marcos!!”

    Considering that in the crowd too was a leading movie star of the country (Amalia Fuentes) who lived in the neighborhood but who made no deliberate attempt to attract undue attention, the BRAZENLY CALCULATED behaviour by the candidate’s wife really forebode ‘dark’ times for the poor Philippines.

    I stuck around after the Mass to observe the Sheba. Worse still, there she was standing with her Brain Trust (at that time, the likes of Crisol, *mil J*rado, I think her dim-witted brother K*koy, etc.), joshing and cackling like a bunch of goons, ALL looking very pleased that they were able to subvert the Mass for their political ends.

    So it was no surprise that some 25 years later, the shameless IRM would pull a similarly pitiful, theatrical act in the Big Apple’s St. Patrick’s Cathedral no less.

    SHAMELESS. CALCULATING. DEVIOUS. Maybe she’ll burn in hell.


  26. zippo said,

    July 10, 2007 at 3:11 am

    Speaking of the Madrigals, I just saw Tita Ising M-V at the 7 am mass today. Very low key. Never calls attention to herself but always with a ready smile when you greet her.

    I was with my wife. She said “Ay, hijo, I’m so glad to see that young people still go to mass even on a weekday.” I wanted to tell her, “Tita, I’m already 41!” But thankfully, my wife interjected, “I think, Tita, that going to mass is what makes ALL OF US look and feel so young.”

    Pheeew, thank God for my wife lest I would have implied that if I’m ALREADY 41, then you must be a really ancient woman.

    Z 🙂

  27. Paquito said,

    July 9, 2007 at 7:52 pm


    I am very much delighted to meet (at least “virtually”) a relative of the Lorenzo family. If I recall correctly, Don Pablo and Doña Luisa Lorenzo had five children: Pablo, Jr., Isabel “Biling,” María Clara “Caling,” María Luisa, and Luis. Doña Caling, of course, was the well-known, late mayor of Zamboanga City ( and she was also present, in her youth, at the signing of the Commonwealth Act at Malacañang that established Zamboanga City as a chartered city ). I will always appreciate this great lady’s tireless efforts to preserve the region’s Hispanic / “Chavacano” cultural heritage.

    I do know that Doña Luisa was born Doña Luisa Ràfols. Her father was a member of the old Ràfols Visayan-Catalán clan. It is very interesting to hear about her mother’s Syrian ancestry. People often forget that there are a number of well-known families in the Philippines ( and in other parts of the Hispanic world ) who can trace the origins of their surnames to Lebanon/Syria. Some of these families passed through Spain on the way to the Philippines in the late 1800s and became integrated into Spanish mestizo society here. Some arrived a bit later. A few examples:

    Karam (later changed to Caram)

    But I digress…

  28. Garganta Inflamada said,

    July 9, 2007 at 6:01 pm

    Question to all: how do those vintage couturier gowns/creations/barongs, whether local or extranjero, hold up in Manila’s heat and humidity? I guess unless you have year-round temperature-controlled humidity-free wardrobes (which probably only the likes of the M*drigals have), they are all falling apart, full of “amag,” and ang babaho na — what with all the pancro and make up hugging all those necklines and sweat stains?!?

    Yecch!! Very Miss Havisham!!


  29. Garganta Inflamada said,

    July 9, 2007 at 5:57 pm


    In answer to your question re the attached photo, the good-looking woman at photo’s left IS the senior Dona Luisa Lorenzo. (Note: each succeeding Lorenzo generation had its own Ma. Luisa.)

    The Lorenzos entwined with the Lobregats thru younger (or the late) daughter Caling’s marriage to the Lobregats. My dad told me that the senior Luisa (in the photo) was half-Syrian, hence those dark good looks. If I can still find it when I go visit the folks, dad has/had a photo/clipping of his brother’s marriage to Caling’s older sister, Biling, with a very young Caling standing as Maid of Honor, and my Dad as Best Man for his brother. I think that was circa 1936-37 but last I saw the clipping, it barely held up.


  30. socialclimber said,

    July 9, 2007 at 6:33 am

    Mare*n Rom*aldez-Pom*idou’s wedding gown was made by Oscar dela Renta. Only after 2 to 3 years did he make a similar one (a dress this time) in Hollywood for Sarah Jessica Parker.

  31. taitai said,

    July 7, 2007 at 3:09 pm

    It is said that there are only about two thousand Haute Couture buyers in the world and only two hundred are considered regular customers. I wonder if any Filipina is still a member of this elite group of women.

    During the famous Sarrat wedding of 1982, was it Imeldific or Irene (or both) who had three gowns made – one by Renato Balestra, one by Joe Salazar, and one by Valentino Haute Couture?


  32. taitai said,

    July 6, 2007 at 3:58 pm

    Yes, the new generation of Chinese-Filipino ladies (and men as well) are more than willing to enjoy the good life.

    Many Chinese believe that the first generation builds the wealth, the second grows it, and the third squanders it. It is said that great wealth never goes beyond the third generation.


  33. taitai said,

    July 6, 2007 at 3:46 pm

    official haute couture member and invited member houses:

    Adeline André, Chanel, Christian Dior, Christian Lacroix, Dominique Sirop,
    Emanuel Ungaro, Franck Sorbier, Givenchy, Jean Paul Gaultier, Jean-Louis Scherrer, Elie Saab (invited), Giorgio Armani (invited), Valentino (invited)

    fashion houses who were once official haute couture members:
    Atelier Versace, Balenciaga, Elsa Schiaparelli, Guy Laroche, Jean Patou,
    Lanvin, Loris Azzaro, Marcel Rochas, Nina Ricci, Paco Rabanne, Pierre Cardin, Torrente, Yves Saint Laurent

  34. July 4, 2007 at 4:22 am


    I was focused on the tiresome, photographed, “visible” socialites [ the second and third tier ones ], and that’s why I said that.

    And their propensity to have copies of European designers’ works made by our local and very talented designers.

    But now that I have had more time to think… Yes, taitai, there are many rich Filipinas — and Chinese Filipinas — who do wear the creations of the European designers you mentioned. But more often than not, they are the “socially invisible” ones…

    You know as well as I do that we’ve seen really nice dresses by Zac Posen, Monique Lhuillier, Elie Saab, Martin Margiela, Nicholas Ghesquiere, Narciso Rodriguez, John Galliano, Alexander McQueen, et. al. at dinners and lunches around the city.

    Many low-key, younger [ and prettier ] ladies of the frightfully rich Chinese Filipino families have closetfuls of Paris, London, and New York designers with the shoes, bags, and haute bijoux to go with them. I’ve seen them firsthand. There’s more than enough to thumb their pink noses at Anna Wintour or “Miranda Priestley.”

    Toto Gonzalez

  35. taitai said,

    July 4, 2007 at 3:56 am


    I’ll tell that to Auggie Cordero!

    bwahahahaha!!! 🙂


  36. zippo said,

    July 3, 2007 at 8:40 am

    “Costurera” — that’s one word I haven’t heard in a long, long time. “Modista” is another one.

    Z 🙂

  37. July 3, 2007 at 6:58 am


    Don’t hold your breath…

    It’s more “Costurera” season here than anything else. *lolsz!*

    Toto Gonzalez

  38. taitai said,

    July 3, 2007 at 4:58 am

    So, it’s Haute Couture season.

    Which Filipina Grande Dames, socialites, icons, et. al. wore and/or still wear Haute Couture (Chanel, Dior, Lacroix, Valentino, Saab, etc) ?

  39. Paquito said,

    July 3, 2007 at 1:50 am

    toto G:

    You are absolutely correct in stating that Tita Conching’s mother was a Chuidian (I somehow forgot this and even overlooked your previous reference to this). As you mention, Don Telesforo Chuidian was one of the most prominent figures in Manila society during the latter part of the 19th century: one of the wealthiest entrepreneurs during that era, a leading financial backer of the Revolution, and first President of the Club Filipino.

  40. Paquito said,

    July 3, 2007 at 12:09 am


    Yes, Mr. Lagdameo was Ambassador to the U.S. during the Marcos presidency.

    Toto G. and Garganta Inflamada:

    My memory has started to fail me in my old age, so many thanks for reminding me that Mrs. Ernesto Lagdameo’s full name is Pilar [Revilla] Lagdameo! With the assistance of younger, more technically-inclined family members, I have been saving copies of our albums and scrapbooks to the computer. The challenging part for me has been trying to remember who’s who for some of the photos, as not all of them were originally mine or labeled/annotated.

    Along these lines, I have a photo that is not too old (dated 1961), but it is one that was taken by someone else and includes people that I have neither met nor seem to recall (nor do we know the location of the photo):

    I think that I recognize some of the people in this photo. The gentleman standing in the photo is Don Emilio Abello, Sr., I am fairly certain. I am not very confident, but I think that the lady seated to the right of him (his left) is Doña Trinidad Legarda (it is hard to tell from this angle). I do not know the others in this photo. Someone told me that the lady at the head of the table (at the far left) is Doña Luisa Lorenzo, the wife of former Zamboanga mayor Don Pablo Lorenzo. Does anyone else know? Unfortunately, I never met any of the senior members of the Lorenzo-Lobregat family and cannot recall any other pictures of them from this period (other than Don Pablo). Any help in solving this mystery would be greatly appreciated!

    Oh yes, please do note the pre-war-style panuelas being worn by the ladies.

  41. July 2, 2007 at 4:41 pm


    Yes, there was that first party in 1990 when Te*et dressed his maids in vintage P*toy evening gowns fished from high society “amigas” and “Bailey Banks & Biddle” [ Bangkal Street, Makati ].

    But then, those became the official uniforms of the household staff during receptions at his opulent Pacific Plaza pied-a-terre…

    During an interesting, small dinner he gave for Brother Andrew Gonzalez’s [ President of the DLSU De La Salle University ] appointment as the Secretary of Education in late 1998, his maids were dressed in P*toy bridal gowns and his valets in P*toy barong tagalogs, a fact that he stated comically just before dinner.

    That dinner was memorable because all kinds of Italian pasta were served, which exasperated Madame Marcos, who wanted “Real Food.” First, noticing that big people were sitting awkwardly on Te*et’s teensy-weensy, black-lacquered, French Second Empire salon chairs, She ordered her guards to transfer her own antique English chairs from her adjacent pied-a-terre to serve as the dining chairs. Then, She ordered her guards to bring in “Real Food” from her kitchen, in particular, a newly-arrived “Lechon” which had been sent as a gift to Her that evening. Also other dishes, and many desserts. It became a splendid meal because of Her intervention. The evening ended past midnight at Madame Marcos’ adjacent pied-a-terre with Her explaining the origins and difficulties of the Marcos Wealth to an awed, open-mouthed, and sleepy Brother Andrew. Amidst the splendors of Madame Marcos’ “palais” in the sky, what impressed Brother Andrew the most was a pile of expensive Belgian chocolates that were on Her dining table [ characteristically enough 😛 ]!!!

    The last time we were at Te*et’s opulent “manse” in the sky, the maids were, as usual, dressed in vintage P*toy evening gowns…

    Toto Gonzalez

  42. divina said,

    July 2, 2007 at 2:38 pm


    do tell us about that banquet hosted by T with servants in M gowns! 🙂


  43. zippo said,

    July 1, 2007 at 9:17 am


    I think Mr. Lagdameo was Ambassador to the U.S. during the 1st Marcos Term… Remember that Tito Lagdameo is married to Rory Cojuangco while Maritess Lagdameo is married to Manolo Lopez.

    Z 🙂

  44. Garganta Inflamada said,

    July 1, 2007 at 8:07 am

    Toto asked: Wasn’t Old Mrs. Ernesto Lagdameo’s maiden name Pilar Revilla?


    Yes, I think it was.

    They were quite close to the Macapagals but somehow he managed to snag the US ambassadorship post sometime during the 1st or 2nd legitimately elected Marcos years.


  45. July 1, 2007 at 5:21 am


    That’s a fantastic bit of history. Please regale us with more!!!

    Toto Gonzalez

  46. June 30, 2007 at 3:48 pm


    Of course, you know that “Tita” Conching was not only a Sunico, She was a Chuidian on her maternal side, the daughter of Dona Pacita Chuidian de Sunico. “Tita” Conching was a granddaughter of Don Telesforo Chuidian, one of the richest men in Manila during the late 19th century. Her ancestry was a shoo-in to the highest ranks of Manila Society.

    Wasn’t Old Mrs. Ernesto Lagdameo’s maiden name Pilar Revilla?

    Toto Gonzalez

  47. June 30, 2007 at 3:41 pm

    Comment1 coming.

    Toto Gonzalez

  48. Paquito said,

    June 30, 2007 at 4:05 am

    Oops, I forgot to mention Chito Madrigal-Collantes. The second caption should say:

    “Former First Lady Eva Macapagal greeting guests at the Manila Hotel, including (L-R): Luis Araneta, Enrique Santa María, Mrs. Ernesto Lagdameo, young Jose “Pitoy” Moreno, Chito Madrigal-Collantes, the First Lady, former Ambassador to the U.S. Ernesto Lagdameo, Antonio Delgado, Conching Chuidian Sunico (ah, years later — this was a very subtle hint), and Mauro Prieto.”

  49. Paquito said,

    June 30, 2007 at 3:58 am

    zippo & toto g:

    Yes, that is indeed former Miss Philippines (1935) Conchita “Conching” Sunico! As you know, the Sunico family was one of the more prominent Chinese mestizo families in those days. You may recall that old Don Eduardo Sunico was one of the leading businessmen of the early 1800s, along with Paris-educated financier José Dámaso Gorricho (grandfather of T.H. Pardo de Tavera y Gorricho), Antonio Rocha (of the famous house of Rocha that built Malacañang Palace and namesake of the late co-founder of the modern C.F. Sharp Group), Basque merchant Eugenio de Otadui, Ignacio Cagigas Varela (of the prosperous Spanish Varela clan), José María Jugo (leading member of the Real Sociedad Económica de Amigos del País de Filipinas), and Domingo Roxas y Ureta (entrepeneur and founder of the modern Roxas-Zóbel-de Ayala-Soriano dynasty, of course).

    Anyhow, here is the complete answer (L-R): Elvira Ledesma-Eduque, Conching Chuidian Sunico, Helen Dosser-Zulueta, and Chona Recto-Ysmael (daughter of Claro M. Recto and Aurora Reyes-Recto, of the well-known Reyes mestizo clan originally from Cádiz, Spain).

    Former First Lady Eva Macapagal greeting guests at the Manila Hotel, including (L-R): Luis Araneta, Enrique Santa María, Mrs. Ernesto Lagdameo, young Jose “Pitoy” Moreno, [ ], the First Lady, former Ambassador to the U.S. Ernesto Lagdameo, Antonio Delgado, Conching Chuidian Sunico (ah, years later — this was a very subtle hint), and Mauro Prieto. What memories this brings back for me!

  50. June 29, 2007 at 4:41 am


    I think it is “Tita” Conchita Chuidian Sunico. The “IT GIRL” of Manila during PreWar.

    Toto Gonzalez

  51. zippo said,

    June 29, 2007 at 12:38 am


    If it isn’t Chito Madrigal-Collantes, could it be Conchita Sunico?

    Z 🙂

  52. Paquito said,

    June 28, 2007 at 5:44 am


    Jeje… Actually, she’s not your Tita Chito [ Madrigal-Collantes ]. I do have a later photo of her (Chito Madrigal-Collantes) with Eva Macapagal at the Manila Hotel, just for you! 😉

    I’ll post the complete answer later tonight (and list the people in this photo too). I want to see some others give it a try first. 🙂

  53. zippo said,

    June 27, 2007 at 2:06 am

    You can see the painting at:

    Z 🙂

  54. zippo said,

    June 27, 2007 at 1:57 am

    Sometimes, rather most of the time, Te*et should just keep his mouth shut.

    I remember being in Hong Kong a few years back. I was honored to see the auction of an Amorsolo painting which was being sold by the very low-key widow of a distant relative. During the pre-auction show, just because Te*et did not like the widow, he started spreading gossip that the painting was not really done by Amorsolo and that the painting was “heavily touched up”.

    It was a good thing that the art enthusiasts came to the rescue of the widow and the price paid for the painting was a record for an Amorsolo.

    The widow whispered to me the reason for Te*et’s tirade: apparently in the 1970s, the Amorsolo family was selling the painting to cover for the medical expenses of Fernando Amorsolo himself. Te*et wanted to buy the painting for a song (in other words, “binabarat”) but the Amorsolo family sold it to the widow’s husband who offered a fair price for the painting.

    Oh, by the way, the painting was one of Amorsolo’s greatest masterpieces: The Portrait of Fernanda de Jesus.

    Z 🙂

  55. Gino said,

    June 26, 2007 at 4:21 pm

    *****************************************************************************************************************************************************!!! LOL

  56. zippo said,

    June 26, 2007 at 2:59 pm

    The 2nd lady (from the left) has got to be Tita Chito [ Madrigal-Collantes ]!!!!

  57. socialclimber said,

    June 26, 2007 at 1:42 pm

    From what I heard, Te*et made a comment about P*toy just copying designs from I forgot where and this made him really mad. I don’t know how true.

  58. June 26, 2007 at 10:38 am


    Very nice picture!!! Thank you very much for posting the link!!!

    Unfortunately, I was born twenty years after that picture, so I don’t know any of the elegant ladies there.

    Please identify!!!

    Toto Gonzalez

  59. June 26, 2007 at 10:36 am


    That is really a lingering question.

    I have a suspicion that it had something to do with Or*stes. Did you notice that the Te*et-P*toy fallout happened at exactly the same time Or*stes left Te*et???

    More later…

    Toto Gonzalez

  60. Paquito said,

    June 26, 2007 at 6:33 am

  61. Paquito said,

    June 26, 2007 at 6:33 am

    At the first ball held in the Fiesta Pavilion of the Manila Hotel after the liberation in 1945, Ramon Valera’s post-war, bare terno was modeled by a number of leading socialites. Here’s a photo:

    How many of these lovely ladies can you identify? I know the complete answer. 😉

  62. zippo said,

    June 25, 2007 at 12:13 pm

    This has never been answered and I’ve always wondered why…….

    What really caused the fall-out of the former best friends The Fashion Czar and Te*et P.? It was reportedly so bad that they demanded I O-C to choose sides and she chose P*toy.

    Info please Toto….

    Z 🙂

  63. June 25, 2007 at 3:20 am


    Of course, the legendary Ramon Valera remains the highest point in Filipino couture.

    Of course, “The Czar of Fashion in Asia” has his loyal clients, foremost is the Dowager Empress.

    It is interesting to know the various goings-on in a Manila couturier’s salon and atelier. Oftentimes, the snippets are fragments of a larger and more interesting story.

    Toto Gonzalez

  64. zippo said,

    June 25, 2007 at 1:49 am

    My late lola used to tell me that in the 1950s and 60s, ladies often went to Slim’s (Salvacion Lim-Higgins), the New Yorker, and, of course, Ramon Valera. Valera, of course, was the favorite (My mom’s eternal complaint was that when she got married at the age of 19, lola had my mom’s wedding gown made by Slim’s while lola had her own terno done by Valera).

    Anyway, Valera apparently did the gowns and ternos of all post independence (post-1946) to pre-martial law First Ladies from Trinidad De Leon-Roxas to I.R.M. with the sole exception of one First Lady whom he truly despised: Eva Macapagal. Story was that no matter how much Mrs. Macapagal courted Valera to do a gown for her, he refused. As such, Mrs. Macapagal had most of her gowns and kimonas (she apparently didn’t wear ternos because of her height) designed by an up and coming young designer named Jose “Pitoy” Moreno.

    Z 🙂

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