In a world dominated by tall and thin models, a few stars managed to steal the spotlight at the Philippine Fashion Week runway.
On May 12, 2011, the Function Rooms 2 and 3 of SMX Convention Center vibrated with applause as Carla Abellana, Iya Villania, Geneva Cruz, Cesca Litton and Nikki Gil walked the ramp wearing the creations of Michelle Sison.
"It was fun!" described Carla and Iya about their first-time modeling experience.
The 24-year-old Kapuso actress added, "Hindi ko inisip na mangyayari ito. Nakakatuwa!"
For Nikki, "It's so nakaka-tense... Ang main issue namin, hindi namin alam kung mag-i-smile kami or magmo-model."
Iya threw in, "Actually, you are torn between being a model or being the person that you are na wanna have fun, smile."
These ladies are used to being in front of so many people so the task was not really nerve-wracking. Cesca related, "Maingay kami sa backstage," and her only main concern, "Ang iniisip ko lang, sana hindi ako mapatid."
Nikki interjected, "Iyan ang prayer nating lahat."
THE MOMENT. Each one of them was given less than a minute to walk and make an impression.
It was a no-sweat stuff for Geneva, who's not exactly a newbie on the catwalk.
"Out of my co-artists, ako lang yung naka-shorts, so medyo ok lang naman kasi I've done na fashion shows na naka-bra 'tsaka underwear. It also helped na I've been a client of the designer for a long time, since the '90s pa, so I'm really proud to be a part of this," the singer narrated.
Iya was smiling when she emerged onstage. "Hindi lang halata, may effort naman na mag-model. Nagawa ko pa nga mag-interact sa kakilala ko sa ano, e," she beamed.
Moving on with her story, the bubbly Filipino-Australian Kapamilya said, "I just wanted to be myself kaso nung nag-U turn na 'ko, 'tapos nakita ko si Danica Magpantay [2011 Ford Supermodel of the World], tumiklop na 'ko.
Nikki joked, "In fairness, nakapaglakad ka with an international model."
Iya quipped, "Oh sorry, my claim to fame!"
Joining in the banter, Geneva said, "Baka tumiklop...yung damit mo."
THE CHEERERS. Their fan clubs were not invited to the event, but some of the girls managed to bring "mga taga-palakpak sa audience," as Cesca put it.
Nikki said her boyfriend Billy Crawford didn't make it, but her mom was present. "Yung mother ko, akala niya Sex and the City, so nag-bring siya ng friends niya at puma-fashion week sila diyan sa labas. Buti na lang at nandun sila at merong pumalakpak."
Iya thanked their managers. She and the other three ladies are under the talent management group of Arnold Vegafria.
Geneva spotted her good friend and fellow singer Rachel Alejandro, but when asked if she had a male cheerer, she replied, "Madami sa tabi-tabi diyan. I don't know..."
Cesca had some cager-friends watching her modeling stint, but she underscored, "Mga friends ko lang yun...Support-support lang."
Carla's boyfriend Geoff Eigenmann also missed the show, "not tonight...may gagawin," while Iya's beau Drew Arellano, "My lovey is in his dreams. Tulog na siya dahil maaga pa siya bukas."
FASHION TIPS. Lastly, all four stars gave pointers on how to pull off a "pagrampa."
Iya quickly answered, "Chest out! Fierce look," a tip which supposedly came from Drew.
Laughing, Geneva exclaimed, "Parang marathon lang 'yan, e."
Then turning a bit serious, Iya added, "Sana man lang, maganda ang fit sa 'yo."
Nikki's rule when it comes to her clothes, "Basta nilalabhan yung clothes niyo at fresh yung smell niya, that's fine. Dapat comfortable ka."
Referring to Nikki's tip, "Oy, anong comfortable ka diyan kung tiis ganda ka din."
Carla elaborated. "The shoes [of Nikki], hindi siya comfortable pero maganda siya."
For Cesca, style is important. "Dapat tignan mo kung bagay sa 'yo–color, cut, design, lahat."
Carla has only one word, "Confident!"
Before the interview ended, the jokey Iya said, "Ito yung hinihintay niyong interview sa amin."
Nikki cut in, "Sana may makuha kayong matino!"