Rhett Eala returned to his roots last night at the third day of Bench Fashion Week. The last time the designer came out with a collection, it was a parade of pageant dresses in light of Binibining Pilipinas Maxine Medina’s bid for the title of Miss Universe. It was uncharted territory for Rhett but now he conquered it, he let his inspiration take him where it went, showcasing both a menswear and womenswear line yesterday.
“I was inspired by so many different films for the women’s line. I have been watching a lot of YouTube and a lot of period pieces. There were dresses [in tribute] of Princess Diana, dresses about the medieval times, dresses [inspired] by the ’70s,” says the designer. There was a black off-shoulder tiered dress fit for a big ball and a cocktail dress with puff sleeves and feather details. Thrown into the mix is a reference to his previous work like the emerald green fringe dress and a piece featuring a sheer top adorned with crystals. Rhett claims that the first dress with embroidery that featured puffed collar and sleeves was his Princess Diana look.
For his menswear line, Rhett went back to his Japanese-inspired designs. “It’s more laid-back and earthy. It’s not a suit.” He thought about the men’s pieces before the women’s collection. “That’s why it looks like two separate collections.” He didn’t find going back to his aesthetic hard but the range of inspirations were hard to reign. “It was difficult to find cohesiveness.” He laughed also when he mentioned that the collection had no name. It was just what it was and it was great because it was Rhett doing what he liked with excitement. “The shoes were mine. I collect them but I can’t always wear them so I let them use them,” says Rhett referring to the leather sneakers that the men wore down the runway.
But he isn’t about to rest on his laurels just yet. He wants to make another jump out of the usual to spice things up. “I might just do another collection all about gowns again.”
Click on the slideshow to see all the looks from Rhett Eala’s latest collection!
Photos by Arvin Artates
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