Category: Design Commune

Top design and lifestyle brands take center stage at Manila FAME October 2018 Edition

Now on its 68th edition, the country’s premiere trade platform for exports and design, Manila FAME, will gather the country’s best micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) on October 19-21, at the World Trade Center Metro Manila, Pasay City, Philippines.

Limitless possibilities abound in Manila FAME 2018

The bi-annual trade show will continue to stand as a blank canvas for the country’s skillful artisans, providing a platform that nurtures creative freedom among entrepreneurs. It showcases the distinct design imprint of the Philippines to the global audiences.

For its October 2018 edition, Manila FAME will anchor on the shades of off white and ivory, the palest pinks and skin-toned hues. These soft colors are basic, discreet, timeless and classic. The perfect base that leaves plenty of freedom to add more.


                                  CITEM Executive Director Paulina Suaco-Juan

“To emphasize the teeming ingenuity of local designers and entrepreneurs, Manila FAME serves as a springboard where they can explore their imagination. This will help us take Filipino craftsmanship to the next level,” said Paulina Suaco-Juan, the newly appointed CITEM Executive Director.

Manila FAME will put together exporters, designers and retail brands from all over the country under one roof to highlight Filipino artistry in the global marketplace. It will gather the best products from homegrown MSMEs in the home, furniture, lighting, holiday and gifts, fashion, visual arts and “food as gifts” sectors.

Organized by the Center for International Trade Expositions and Mission (CITEM), the export promotions arm of the Department of Trade and Industry, Manila FAME aims to strengthen the country’s position as a viable source of high-quality, and design-forward home décor and houseware products.

Design forward special features to behold in Manila FAME


Design Commune

The upcoming edition of Manila FAME will feature the third edition of Design Commune. This special setting was conceptualized to establish a steady designer-manufacturer relationship where designers understand the skills of manufacturers, and manufacturers recognize the significance of product design and development.

This collaboration will conceive a constant output of well-designed products, creating an extensive showcase that meets the buyers’ expectation of a sourcing destination. The products to be developed will be segmented towards various markets including Europe, U.S. and Japan.

The main special setting will be designed by award-winning artist Tes Pasola who previously worked as a co-curator in the Product Design Consultancy Program during the April 2018 Edition of Manila FAME. During the same period, she was commissioned to make paper art collages for the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Manila.  She is part of Movement 8, a group of the country’s finest and choicest designers that seeks to establish the Philippines as a serious player in the international high-end consumer market.

Artisan Village

A staple of Manila FAME, the Artisan Village is a venue for masterfully made handcrafted pieces designed by Filipino MSMEs to be introduced in the international market. As part of CITEM’s commitment to promote the participation of local communities in Manila FAME, handicrafts from Antique, Bohol, Cagayan de Oro, Cebu, Negros Occidental and Negros Oriental, and Marawi will be displayed to showcase the artistic capabilities and product selection of local artisans.

Bamboo Extreme

Taking after the youthful energy of today’s generation, the Bamboo Extreme program pushes the use of bamboo as a raw material for high-end lifestyle pieces. It seeks to provoke and renew interest in the local resource, veering away from bamboo’s reputation as a “poor man’s material.”  Spearheaded by the Design Center of the Philippines, the program is a disruptive, conceptual presentation of the bamboo material as it speaks of adventure, exploration and experimentation through the application of bamboo into product collections that capture the millennials’ way of life.

Home and Wellness Pavilion

Another returning special feature for this edition is the Home and Wellness Pavilion. This special area will showcase a wide range of gourmet gifts, health & wellness products and services, and other fiber based goods manufactured by select grassroot communities supported by the Department of Agriculture-Agribusiness Marketing Service (DA-AMAS).

KATHA Awards

To continue the tradition of giving recognition to design-forward local enterprises, Manila FAME will also hold the annual KATHA Awards, the hallmark of product design excellence and innovation. It will distinguish the most innovative local fashion and lifestyle industries among the Manila FAME exhibitors who continue to develop and redefine the prestige of Philippine design.

Interested buyers and exhibitors can check out the official Manila FAME website at for more details. You can also follow Manila FAME on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for the latest updates.


Conquering Design Trends at Manila FAME

Internationally renowned designer Tony Gonzales explores PH aesthetics as MF creative director


Playing between the lines of marketability and aesthetics, Manila FAME, the country’s premier lifestyle and design event, continues its exploration on design trends, the Philippine design identity, and product salability on April 19-21 at the World Trade Center Metro Manila, Pasay City.

Multi-awarded and internationally acclaimed designer Tony Gonzales will take the helm for the show as its creative director and product development program lead.

“The show’s 67th edition will put emphasis in the infusion of mainstream design trends in Philippine products and aesthetics as a means of raising the marketability of local products to international buyers,” said DTI Undersecretary Nora K. Terrado.

At the frontline is Design Commune: Patterns and Palettes, the highly successful show scenography launched in the Manila FAME October 2017 show that paired designers with local micro, small, and medium enterprises to develop new products that fit identified material requirements, techniques, and price points.

“Trends influence the overall product selection and demand in the market and we want to utilize that in our products. But we will not simply follow trends, we will establish that when it comes to fulfilling market demand, the Philippines is at the forefront of it,” said Gonzales.

“This will then cause a cascading effect. As we help our artisans and manufacturers to embrace new trends and apply them to their products, we support their sustainability and standing in the international scene.”

Philippine aesthetics meet design trends

The second installation of Design Commune will be an extensive exploration of the design trends that were introduced during its maiden edition and their subsequent evolution.

Ethnic Nomad takes inspiration from a variety of ethnic cultures, patterns, and colors ranging from South America to Philippine tribes. For this edition, Ethnic Nomad will include Spring and Autumn variations, showcasing light and pastel colors for the former and warm and homey tones for the latter.

2017 saw the rise of warm metals and this continued on to the first quarter of 2018 without any signs of dying down anytime soon. Continuing on the neutral trends of last year, Neutral Metals incorporates gold, bronze, and silver as elegant accents to home décor and furniture to give a blend of earthy sophistication.

A classic, Neutral Blues explores the versatility of the color blue having been a constant in ceramics and crafts in Asia and Europe. The theme will include a wide variety of products crafted after the theme’s palette that includes warm and cool-toned blues alike.

Lastly, Tints of Green gives a more subdued look into the green trend that has swept 2017 and the better half of 2018. The theme takes on a cooler tone, shifting away from bright greens to deliver a more relaxing natural feel.

“We are excited to showcase the adaptiveness of our artisans as we showcase a contemporary collection that merges the distinct Philippine aesthetics with mainstream design trends and we are looking forward to see the buyer’s reception when they see Design Commune,” said Gonzales.

A total of 75 MSMEs will be working with Gonzales and his team of designers Tes Pasola, Detleft Klatt, and Reine Shih for the project. The maiden edition included 60 companies from across the Philippines and was a major factor in the launch of more than 1,300 new products during the show.

Platform for New Products

As a collective show, the themes of Design Commune will cascade to other special settings of the upcoming Manila FAME show, including the GREAT Women Project 2. Gonzales will also lead the product development sessions with 30 MSMEs under GREAT Women in partnership with the Design Center of the Philippines.

More than 200 product development workshops were conducted in 56 locations across the country last edition, which resulted in nearly 1300 new products developed and launched exclusively in Manila FAME October 2017.

The 67th edition of Manila FAME looks to exceed the number of products launched in the October 2017 show with more partner MSMEs.

The Center for International Trade expositions and Missions (CITEM), the export promotions arm of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is the proud organizer of the Manila FAME – the second longest-running trade show in the Asia-Pacific, and the only trade event in the Philippines approved by Union des Foires Internationales, a Paris-based association of trade fair organizers founded 90 years ago in Italy.

Manila FAME is a bi-annual business sourcing platform of export ready and finely crafted furniture and home furnishings, holiday gifts and décor, and fashion accessories. It showcases the best of Philippine design and craftsmanship. For more information, please visit