Fashion

Style Shouldn't Sacrifice Function, Says Architect

Architect and property developer Rona Torres-Tan's wardrobe is a mix of classic pieces and bold modern prints.
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Earliest Fashion Memory
Going through my grandmother’s closet and trying out her clothes. She had the most amazing antelope and cashmere coats and I couldn’t wait to travel to a cold place to borrow them.

Describe Your Style
I like clothes that are streamlined utilitarian classics, sometimes a bit edgy. I normally gravitate toward solid neutral colors, but sometimes I go for bold colors and graphic prints. My uniform when I’m not working would be jeans and tailored long-sleeved shirts, tunics and shorts, or loungey dresses.

Favorite Brands
For bags, Loro Piana and small artisanal brands from Italy. For shoes, Prada, Tod’s, Jil Sander, Marni, Superga sneakers, and Brooks and Newton running shoes. I love jeans by G-Star and 7 for All Mankind; tailored shirts by Thomas Pink; dresses by Jil Sander, Costume National, Diane von Fürstenberg, Muji, Uniqlo, and small Japanese brands; jackets by Loro Piana and Barbour; and running and tennis wear by Adidas and Tonic.

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Loro Piana bag

Favorite Shops
In Manila, my sister-in-law Richie Ortega-Torres’ shop, Bridal, for wearable everyday and office dresses with flattering cuts and beautiful graphic prints. Mavis Fuentebella’s shop, Tala, for her loungewear and dresses. Mavis also carries Japanese brands that have the most amazing unusual designs for daily wear. Univers, Homme et Femme, and Aura Athletica. Abroad, I like going to artisan stores.

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Fashion Philosophy
Style should always be personal and suit your body type. It should never sacrifice comfort and function.

Fashion Influences
I think my fashion sensibilities are very much influenced by the designs of my favorite architects: Mies van der Rohe, Tadao Ando, Ed Tuttle, Kerry Hill, SCDA, and WoHa. Streamlined, timeless, functional with hints of vernacular.

Style Icons
My grandmother, Carmen Lopez-Rizal Consunji. She always looked elegant whether dressed casually, while traveling or at an evening function. She invested in good quality, timeless pieces of clothing with just the right cut and in jewelry pieces that were perfect for her body type. She always insisted on dressing appropriately and made it a point to know the details and dress code for a function beforehand. A lot of her clothing and jewelry would still look very stylish today.


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Signature Accessories
A large bag and chunky cocktail rings with Byzantine designs.

First Big Splurge
Gucci loafers.

Prized Possessions
Loro Piana bag and a jacket from my husband.

I Can’t Live Without…
It used to be my sunglasses because I love being outdoors. Now I can’t live without my eyeglasses.

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Carole Cuasay-Tagle
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