Haute Couture is evolving: from designers like Teuta Matoshi Duriqi and Valdrin Sahiti, and now, Mak Tumang, these designers are proof that you no longer need to be apart of the largest fashion houses in the world to produce exceptional couture. While ateliers have particular craftsmanship, it’s the name brand that no longer needs to stand as a signal for quality: designers who are not affiliated with a large design house can make it. Filipino designer, Mak Tumang, is a testament to this. He designed the winning gown at Miss Universe this year.
Catriona Gray, representing the Philippines, wore her gown with great pride for her country, but beyond the opportunity to give recognition to the gorgeous designs of her country, this also allowed for her to be more confident by wearing Mak’s lava gown while she made her now famous “lava walk” down the runway at Miss Universe! Catriona showed the world that great couture doesn’t need to come from a famous design house, great couture is designed by designers with talent, and not always a famous design house behind them (yet!).
You can search far and wide for astonishing couture, and Mak Tumang, after designing the winning gown for Miss Universe is surely going to have an incredible career ahead of him. Fellow Filipino-American designer, Monique Lhuillier, was on the selection committee for this year’s Miss Universe competition, which I hope helps him expand his reach: I hope to see these designs on the red carpet at the Oscars this year. Congrats to Mak and a what a wonderful way to highlight the designs of the Philippines!