I spent most of my life in the South–South of Metro Manila, that is. It was only in the early 2000s that I decided to leave the comforts of home – part circumstance, part want – and moved in to my first shared apartment in Mandaluyong. That to me meant moving North even though it’s hardly as far out as Bulacan. When you need to cross a highway to get out of the suburbs, that meant you were leaving familiar territory, and anywhere past that highway is considered the other side…”Mordor” as some of my friends would call it.
Fashion-wise, I’ve seen and lived the steady south way. I absolutely do not dress up on weekends unless needed; I’m comfortable wearing flip flops in the mall; I hardly wear make up. My uniform to Alabang Town Center or “Town” as residents call it was a grey tee, ripped denim shorts (the non-hipster fit and cut) and Havaianas or flat sandals. I’m more Roxy Chick than Doña at the beach and only started wearing real cover ups (caftans, robes, dresses) in my late 20s. It’s always been a long tank top or t-shirt over my suit. For traveling, it was sneakers all the way with comfy track pants and yes, a t-shirt. For nights out, however I made more effort but still kept the southern twist: tank tops with skirts and heels or jeans with a dressy top.
I was familiar with how the northerners dressed because most of my friends lived there. They were more into brands and flashy colors and logos, all dressed up even to a trip to the mall on sem break. You could always tell the city girls in the beach; they wore silky caftans in vibrant colors, sometimes with a sprinkle of gold eye shadow and bronzer. At airports, they’re the ones in boots and a jacket; a tailored shirt and riding leggings. Nights out meant the time to whip out that LDB and pair it with killer sexy heels.
I’m now in my 40s and getting more and more aware that I have to make a conscious effort to dress my age. I’ve come to embrace the normcore way, maybe because I was around the first time it was en vogue. I haven’t outgrown my love for t-shirts and ratty shorts on Saturdays though, or traveling in sneakers which, ironically is THE way to go these days. I’d like to think I’ve grown into a combination of both districts, more balanced in my mature sartorial choices. Or at least I’d like to think so!
I thought it would be fun to show the differences in style in photos of Hollywood celebs, who if lived here, would fall under either place. Funny how some of them sometimes cross over in their choices. Raise your hand if you can relate.
All photos from Pinterest.com
MALLING Alabang Town Center
MALLING Greenbelt / Power Plant
BEACH Boracay Station 2 & 3
BEACH Boracay Station 1
NIGHT OUT Bank Bar
NIGHT OUT Drive by Taco Shop