With a few months before spring comes, almost all designers from various countries have already showcased their spring 2012 collections in their respective country's fashion week. The Philippines is no different, launching various brands and designers' spring collections during this year's Philippine Fashion Week. With this being said, I am very excited to see that color blocking is still alive and kicking next spring. What I love most about color blocking is the fact that it shows one's creativity and style in mixing and matching certain colors. Anyone can wear an all-black outfit but only true Fashionistas can rock two to five colors in one look without looking like a clown or Rainbow Brite.

Color blocking can be very tricky, especially in college fashion. Everyone wants to look stylish and unique but no one would wants to be labeled as the Nicki Minaj or Lady Gaga of the campus. That is why color blocking should be carefully thought out and done with taste. A tip I learned from experience is to limit one outfit's colors to just three shades. This CollegeFashionista got it right with this sheer three-tone top. She wore this top on top of  a black dress and paired it with black flats and brown bag. Aside from the three-color rule that she got right, she was also able to pull-off my next tip. Another tip I have learned from the spring 2012 collections of different fashion brands and designers, like Peter Som, Vena Cava, Victoria Beckham and Yigal Azrouel's Cut25, is to wear color blocking pieces that are of horizontal stripes. It adds depth and style to one's outfit without looking too over the top. Get inspired by this CollegeFashionista's three-tone, horizontal striped, color blocking trend this coming spring.


Men's fashion has never been interesting for me. In my opinion, men's fashion has always been bland and, frankly, boring. Don't get me wrong, most of my favorite fashion designers are men and I beleive that men have the capability of dressing stylish and creatively. With this said, I believe the problem lies in how men aren't brave enough to test the waters and take risks when it comes to what they wear. This is why I was surprised to see this CollegeFashionisto wearing a white tee, khaki pants, black Sanuk Shunami surfers and, of course, his outerwear. What made his outfit interesting was his purple, gray and blue striped cardigan he bought from Bangkok. There are two great things about his cardigan. First, cardigans are the best piece of clothing for this fall's bipolar weather (yes, for both men and women); they are not too thin for those hot days and not too thick for the windy or rainy ones. Second, stripes are a man's best friend because they are simple to pull-off, yet make a graphic and bold statement.

Not convinced that this CollegeFashionisto and his look got an A+ in style? Maybe GQ's most stylish men of 2009 and 2010 could push you to try this fashion staple for men. Lebron James in his own Paul Smith gray with pink stripes cardigan, Ryan Gosling in a light-shaded nude Ferragamo cardigan with gray and peach stripes, T.I. in a Burberry multi-shade gray stripes cardigan, Kanye West in a graphic black and white stried cardigan and Justin Timberlake in a sexy, cool white cardigan with thin multi-color stripes of blue. Remember, stripes plus cardigan equals CollegeFashionisto!


From my previous entries, any one can see the important role color plays in an outfit. Though I love bright and bold colors, there are times I'd like to dial it down as well. This CollegeFashionista wears a perfect example of an outfit that has a simple, yet refined color pallete. With a white button-down and a black bandage skirt, she looks chic and classy. Pulling the outfit all together is a brown braided belt, black ballet flats, and black quilted sling bag. With her tan skin, dark brown hair, and red lips, this CollegeFashionista evokes the classic Filipina beauty with an updated and casual style.

Black and white has always been the classiest and easiest color combination to pull off, but sometimes, with a lack of a little creativity or imagination, a black and white ensemble could look bland, or worse, look dead. To be able to wear a black and white outfit with style, first is to get some inspiration from the queen of the classic B&W outfit, Coco Chanel. Second is to know your personal style. Aside from black and white being classy, it is also the most versatile color combination fit for any style. Make black and white edgy like Rihanna, bohemian with an edge like Olivia Wilde, rocker-chic like Kate Moss, and casual chic like January Jones. Third is to keep accessories to a minimum, either go with one piece that pops of color or pieces in the same black and white shade. Lastly, make sure skin is glowing and healthy-looking like this CollegeFashionista to avoid looking like a corpse that just dug itself out from the grave.


The color red has always been associated with love, passion, and vigor. Though seen mostly in the Valentine season, another interpretation of this “bloody” color is that it is glamourous, hot, and sexy. Case in point is the relation of this shade to Hollywood's red carpet events. But my all-time favorite color meaning of red is that it symbolizes luck and prosperity. Being an Asian nation that was colonized by other western countries, the Philippines has both Eastern and Western influences. Red as a color that symbolizes luck is one of the Eastern influences Philippine Fashionistas picked up on. Whether one is a believer of good or bad luck does not really matter, because a color that evokes romance, glam, and prosperity, and looks beautiful at the same time, is already as good as it gets.

With the many interpretations of the color red meaning, there are also millions of ways to wear red. One can go sophisticated but edgy like this CollegeFashionista, who pairs her red dress with black heels, clutch, and metallic jewelry for her Commencement Exercise in DLSU-M. Another way is to channel a hippie vibe with a sheer red maxiskirt  from Forever21 and an embelished lace top paired with white tassel sandals, both from Tophop. Go vintage with a red wrap dress with white polka dots from Topshop paired with gold sequined ballerina flats by Forever21. Most, if not all, styles or personalities can incorporate and enjoy the wonderful shade of red with just a pinch of creativity and sense of style.


In Manila, there are only two types of weather — sunny or rainy. For some, the lack of the other seasons limits fashion creativity and, in turn, the fashion industry. Trench coats, boots and scarves are just some of the sacrifices the Philippine Fashionistas face everyday.

With this said, of course when there are negatives, there are also positives. The greatest advantage of enjoying just two seasons is that one can wear color everyday. Because with the constant heat of our climate, summer lingers all year round. This gives Philippine CollegeFashionistas an excuse to wear floral pieces, summer dresses, Daisy Dukes and almost any summer staple, like this colorful dress this CollegeFashionista is wearing. With her fair and light skin, the color of her dress pops out and is eye-catching with no effort at all. Aside from her bright dress, her smile and down to Earth personality also draws you in and make you wonder if a dress as colorful as that could brighten your spirit unconsiously. With a bright and busy dress, this CollegeFashionista was smart to pair it only with tan sandals and her beautiful smile because additions of accessories could seem like a cry for attention.

For those of you who have forgotten the wonders of last summer, get inspired by the sun, the flowers and the colors once again, like this Fashionista, by looking through some old pegs of fashion inspiration from last spring/summer — Furla candy bags, Mara Hoffman's swimwear,  Rodarte summer dress, and D&G spring/summer ad campaign.

STYLE ADVICE OF THE WEEK: Remember the Culottes

Most every girl enjoys her skirt and shorts, whether its just around the campus, in a party or in almost any other occasion. If I had to choose between these two pieces of clothing, it would be close to impossible for me because I love these two pieces for very different reasons. The skirt exudes femininity and classy elegance, while shorts are more functional and allow the wearer to jump and run and twist and twirl on the windiest days. Though both fashion staples are different in many ways, they are agreeing in one aspect — they show some leg! I'm glad I never have to choose between a skirt and shorts because I could always get the best of both worlds with a culottes. Culottes originated from the French — they were the tights kings, princes, and dukes used. Fortunately for the fashion world, it was later reincarnated to "skorts" (a portmanteau of a skirt and shorts) or, in other words, a pair of shorts that is draped or hangs like a skirt. At earlier times, women wore these kind of shorts to go horseback riding, to clean or garden.

Luckily, modernization came and fashion was never the same. Nowadays, culottes are worn as a fashion statement and there's no one who can atest to that more than this CollegeFashionista. She kept her mom's vintage culottes the center of attention by pairing her statement piece with a black dress used as a top, light pink platform heels and black accessories. She kept the vintage feel of the culottes by picking colors that brought out the pattern of the bottom, but she was also able to make her look modern by pairing it with a trendy pair of shoes. If you are not lucky enough to have vintage treasures lying aroung your mom's closet or can't find any good thrift stores around your area, then take a look at these options of culottes available in the market today. They come in different shapes, sizes, and colors. To get a vintage, but trendy feel try polka-dot, ankle length, pleated, or floral culottes.


Every once in a while, a girl, of course pointing at the direction of another girl’s possession, has a not so innocent "I want that" moment. Well, in my case, it has happened a number of times, especially after accepting the Style Guru writing job in CollegeFashionista. A perfect example of that kind of green with envy moment was when I saw this CollegeFashionista. Amidst a large group of students in their corporate attires was this joyful, exuberant Fashionista wearing a little black dress with black pumps from Forever 21, polished off with a blazer with the perfect shade of green. Keeping her accessories minimal to just her chunky stone necklace, it kept my eyes focused on her statement piece, which was her green blazer. Taking a break from her conference (that's why she had a name tag on), she looked polished and fashion-forward as she was buying herself a refreshment. To be honest, a part of me wanted to approach her more for the knowledge on where she bought her blazer than for getting a picture of her for my weekly post. But, fortunately, I was sane enough to get a picture for this week's STYLE ADVICE OF THE WEEK post. 

With green appearing in almost all the runways this fall, this CollegeFashionista is channelling with so much confidence and finesse the “go green” trend our favorite celebrities are wearing. With combinations of Selma Blair in Roland Mouret fall 2011, to Jennifer Lopez in Emilio Pucci fall 2011, Lady Gaga in Valentino fall 2011 and even, the First Lady Michelle Obama in Laura Smalls fall 2011, green is definitely a difficult, but trendy color to pull off. Though these "green" celebrities may seem to be way out there for the corridors of your college (especially Lady Gaga's green hairdo that might even get you in trouble), this CollegeFashionista show us that it is possible to wear a jade colored piece of clothing without looking like a giant leprecon around the halls. Take it from this CollegeFashionista, green pieces paired with classic colors like black or white and accessorized with minimal accessories will keep your outfit look unique, but chic around the campus.

STYLE ADVICE OF THE WEEK: Fur Your Information

If someone told me a week ago that I would be writing about fur on my next STYLE ADVICE OF THE WEEK post for CollegeFashionista, I would roll my eyes and say how silly the idea would be. With Manila's hot and humid weather, wearing fur, whether how luxurious it looks or feels, is close to suicide. Hot and sticky are just some words that used to pop into my head when thinking about fur in Manila. Fortunately, this CollegeFashionista proved me dead wrong. Watching Lissa Kahayon wear this long sleeve top with fur details made me feel light and breezy, which are not the feelings I used to associate fur with. Maybe it was because the top was of a light material or maybe it was because she paired it with shorts of the same shade. Whatever it was, she made fur look comfortable and easy to wear. With aquamarine earrings, a black belt and metallic shoes and accessories, her look had a balance of edgy and tough and sweet and cuddly.

This CollegeFashionista has either been studying the 2011 fall/winter runway trends from Paris very well or just has an innate fashion ability and sense of style. But, maybe even both because being able to make fur look this effortless is a pretty difficult challenge. Fur definitely exudes a sense of luxury and sophistication with a punch of fantasy. Case in point, these fur looks from Gucci, Alexander McQueen and John Galliano's 2011 fall and winter collection. Luckily, this CollegeFashionista has taught us that the weather nor the avant-garde feel of fur should not scare us away from owning and trying out the fur trend.

Hint: To be able to pull off the fur trend like this CollegeFashionista, first, pick a top with fur details like this one from Topshop. Second, pair it with a lightweight and high-waisted cotton shorts like this one from Forever 21. Third, accessorize with metallic pieces to add a bit of an edge to it or add some simple gold jewelry to keep it clean and simple. Last, wear a smile (like how this CollegeFashionista's flashes her pearly whites) to complete your look for the day!


As I have mentioned in my previous posts, I am a fan of anything colourful. I find outfits that have bright, eye-catching and sometimes even eye-harming colours the best and most interesting pieces of clothing out there. That is why when this CollegeFashionista walked pass me while I was on the lookout for this week’s post, I had to have a double-take moment to really appreciate this look. Because I did not react fast enough, I had a good look only at the back of the outfit. With only little time to decide and a big chance of losing this look forever, my guts said the back was good enough and my legs chased after this CollegeFashionista. When I caught up to her, it was fortunate to see that the front was even better than the back of the outfit. This CollegeFashionista was so charming and cute with her casual look that included her striped top with lace details, black Tory Burch flats, pearl earrings, black Prada bag and, of course, the piece that made it all make sense, her cream chino trousers.

Chino trousers have been the new “It” item since last summer and still it has not ran its course. It has been the current piece every Fashionista or Fashionisto has been pulling out from their closets on those casual and lazy days. On the contrary, these types of trousers may evoke a laid back feel, but never, ever does it look lazy or sluggish. In my opinion, chino trousers have a polished and cool look to them that screams effortless chic style. What made the piece even more stylish is that it was in the colour cream, which is the ideal shade that complements most skin tones.

Hint: To get that casual yet polished look, first is to get a pair of chino trousers like this one from Zara or this one from Topshop, both in the shades of cream. Second, pair it with a classic white shirt or any top with a slightly lighter shade from your trousers. Third, add some black accessories (try a cute black ribbon as a belt like this CollegeFashionista). Voila! You’re effortlessly chic look is ready for a comfy and busy day in school.


It was a rainy day, when I saw this CollegeFashionisto walking through and owning the campus. His confidence and, of course, his style was what caught my eye. After eyeing him like a vulture searching for his prey, I noticed how well he was carrying his statement piece of fashion — his black cape. Because of Manila’s bipolar weather, where it’s sunny one minute and rainy the next, I find it very challenging to find an outfit that fits into both a warm and a wet setting. This does not seem to be a problem for this CollegeFashionista. Reminiscent of the 2011 fall/winter runway of fashion houses like Chanel, Dior and Jean Paul Gaultier, this CollegeFashionisto was able to take the runway floor length, over the top cape trend and made it easy, breezy and very ready-to-wear. With a great ALDO silver and gold statement belt, sunnies, black oxford shoes and black doctors bag, this CollegeFashionisto completed his fashion-forward and practical look fit for any season or weather.

One might say that it is difficult to pull off a look with a cape as the vital element of the whole outfit, but let us learn from our CollegeFashionisto’s bravery and what I call “fashion guts” and take chances with the way we dress and the way we present ourselves. Here are some options for some great RTW black cape pieces: a Mango hooded cape and an ASOS spring cape. For those who are not as comfortable in making fashion risks à la Lady Gaga, tops and dresses that are cape-inspired could be as stylish. This sheer cape shirt in silk chiffon from Staple and this crinkled cape shirt by Minkpink are great pieces that could easily be styled and worn out on a busy day of college life. Some final words, as we learned from this CollegFashionisto, capes are very trendy this fall, but make sure to carry this trend with flair and confidence and not let it carry you.