Look who came to our pop-up shop at Tala Manila

Mavis Fuentebella, Patrice Ramos Diaz, Rita Nazareno, and I are very grateful to our friends and family, and even friends of friends, who came to the four-day pop-up event for dotcomme and Zacarias at Tala Manila last weekend.
Tala Manila is the brainchild of Mavis Manotoc-Fuentebella—the creative soul behind this hard-to-find shop which champions and promotes small labels from here and abroad.

Tala Manila
photo 4

Our latest collection for dotcomme includes the last designs of Penny Ong, our partner who passed away last June 15th. I’m proud to say her designs were received very well. :)

dotcomme at Tala Manila

Rita Nazareno is the creator of Zacarias handwoven bags which are usually sold in Europe and Japan.


From opening day (August 13) to closing on August 16, Patrice, Rita, Mavis, and I were overwhelmed by the support of people like Tweetie De Leon-Gonzalez, Irene Marcos-Araneta, Candy and Lucille Dizon, Monique Villongco, Dr. Tere Henson, Rhett Eala, Margie Duavit, Chiyo Tagami, Rajo Laurel, Dindi Gallardo, Cherish Garcia, Gabby Lichauco, Sevrine Miailhe, Pauline Juan, Isha Andaya, Ria Prieto, Gina Torres, Bea Ledesma, Malu Gamboa, Cai Subijano, Mia San Agustin, Christine Dychiao, Daryl Chang, Mano Lotho, Luis Espiritu and the SOFA students, Jappy Gonzalez, Pepito Albert, Yvette Fernandez, Eric Paras, Yu Hokazono, Tinay Villiamiel, Stenie Coyuito and Joseph Tay, Grace Velasco, Katrina Holigores, Daffy Morales, Denise Peralta, Mikko Sison, Tita Vicky Sales and the Nazareno family who came in full force.
They were only some of our guests who braved the heavy payday weekend/rain/Makati traffic to visit Tala Manila.

Tweetie Gonzalez
Tweetie Gonzalez in dotcomme

Patrice and Mavis
Patrice Diaz and Mavis Fuentebella wearing dotcomme

Nico LeChavalier
Nico LeChevalier

Tere Henson
dotcomme’s idol, Dr. Tere Henson

Monique Villonco
Monique Villonco

Grace, Led, Rem
Grace Velasco, Let Rosales, Rem de Vera

ava and melvin
Ava Yap and Melvin Mojica

gina and patrice
Gina Torres and Patrice Diaz

Rojo x Zacarias
Rojo Sison with Rita’s Star Wars bags

Spanish guests

Matteo, 11 months

Nazareno family
Nazareno family

Special thanks go to Jim Fuentebella and Yodel Pe (who did our dotcomme logo), Jasper Ong for the Magners and full support, Melvin Mojica, Ria Bolivar, Rem de Vera, Ann See, Jeramy and Shiela of Tala Manila, Preen, Don Papa Rhum and Portobello Bakery.

Don Papa rum

Everybody had fun trying on our clothes and Rita’s bags. Tiring but fun and definitely worth it. Can’t wait for the next pop-up store. Will let you know where and when.
Follow dotcomme on Instagram @dotcomme.ph and like us on Facebook.

dotcomme x zacarias
dotcomme x zacarias
dotcomme x zacarias
dotcomme x zacarias
Dotcomme x Zacarias
Dotcomme x Zacarias

To know more about Tala Manila, click HERE.

Lexus NX300H: Tried and tested

My boys have certainly grown up.
I’m not a car person, but when my boys—Ben (13), Markus (12), Jeroen (42)—found out that we would get to use a Lexus SUV Hybrid for a week, they were excited.

The Lexus NH300H at the showroom garage

Lexus is a luxury car brand I’ve known for a while since I was in art school. Since the mid ‘90s, my Dad has bought four Lexus (or should I say, Lexi). He likes its “quiet comfort and understated elegance.”
My brother Dennis has owned three Lexus, including a Lexus NX300h, which we would be test driving.
Dennis says, compared with other luxury brands, you get a better engine, sound system and interior finishing with the Lexus. “The best feature for me is the roomy cabin and timeless luxury,” he said.

Common sight in our office parking: Lexus cars

My cousin Dr. Gerard Henson bought the Lexus RX450h hybrid last June 2014. He loves “everything about the car—from the car itself to the after-sales and servicing.” He also loves the Lexus showroom lounge at BGC :)
Gerard says he drives the car almost everyday. What he loves the most: “It’s a very low-key car that has all the makings of a high-end luxury vehicle.”

As a rider, I love the back seat, including the great lighting it offers :)

I actually did some research before test driving the Lexus NX300h. Simply put, a hybrid car is one that uses two sources of power, which allow you to save on fuel to achieve cost and energy efficient. That said, if your car needs a full tank every week, driving this compact luxury SUV will save you two trips to the gas station every month. Amazing, isn’t it?

Apart from that, we are also doing the environment some good as the NX300h’s CO2 emission is just 116g/km. Truth be said, you’re not going to recoup the cost of the car (P4 million) with your savings on fuel. But I believe some people feel good about reducing carbon footprints.

Roomy enough to accommodate Jeroen’s long Dutch legs

Driving the Lexus Hybrid NX300h also makes a statement as there are less than 10 of this variant in the Philippines. I’d say it’s not your typical family SUV.
In Hollywood, where many stars are environment activists, the Lexus is a favorite. Among those that drive Lexus Hybrids are Paul McCartney, Ryan Philippe, Zachary Quinto, Matt Damon, Kim Kardashian, Charlize Theron, Jeremy Piven and Olivia Wilde.

The boys took the NX for a spin around the village on the first night and they looked forward to using it in going to school the following day.
My jaded boys loved tinkering with the different high-tech features that the NX comes with.
One of them is the electronically adjustable cooling feature that allows us to adjust the temperature of the two front seats. My boys liked so much, they didn’t want to leave the car. They even asked if they could sleep inside.


The Qi Wireless Charging Tray came in handy when we were on our way to Shangri-La Mall and my phone was running low on power. All I had to do was put my phone on the tray to fully charge it. No need for cables at all.
Most of all, what the boys loved was the panoramic sunroof, especially when we were on our way to Estancia Mall as they enjoyed watching the rain fall on it. Can imagine how energizing it must be to have sunshine come through it as well.


We found the safety features very thoughtful for families: eight airbags, full LED headlights, 360-degree monitor and more. The 360-degree monitor is extremely useful to any driver, regardless of skill level. Find out more about the NX’s cool features here.


The Lexus Hybrid NX300h has a four-cylinder engine, electric motors and automatic transmission. The seats are comfortable for four people, but (let’s be honest) not for a tall person.


Since the NX300h is a hybrid, we were concerned about charging the car. I mean where are the charging stations in the Philippines? To our amazement, the NX charges its own battery whenever the driver steps on the brake.

Lexus Hybrid Drive is known as a full hybrid system, which means that its two power sources—a battery-powered electric motor and a petrol-driven combustion engine—are separate from one another. Lexus Hybrids run on Normal, Eco, and Sport modes but the NX 300h adds the “EV” mode that keeps it running on electricity at speeds below about 30 mph as long as the battery holds out.


We loved how smooth the Lexus Hybrid NX300h ran and how quiet the engine was. As for the boys, they were quite sad when it was time to return the car. Can’t even begin to tell you about the drama that ensued. I guess Lexus love really runs through their veins.

To know more about the Lexus Hybrid NX300h, go to http://www.lexusasia.com/.

dotcomme and Zacarias pop-up shop at Tala Manila this weekend

Tala Manila presents Zacarias and dotcomme in a three-day pop up event on August 14-16, 2015.
Zararias is a handbag line created by Rita Nazareno that combines progressive design and the art of hand-weaving.
They reflect the creator’s wit and appreciation for design and architecture. Zacarias bags utilize natural leather in combination with wicker and chaircane.

Tala Manila
Tala Manila

Dotcomme is a hobby clothing line started by Patrice Ramos-Diaz, Cecile van Straten, and Penny Ong—a group of friends who share a common love of the colors grey, black and baby blue. The collection is for women who are tomboys at heart and prefer boys’ clothes to form-fitting clothes.
“We’re not sexy and we’re not sweet,” said Cecile.

Tala Manila
Tala Manila

“It’s always a pleasure for us to showcase world-class talent that is homegrown,” said Mavis Manotoc-Fuentebella, the entrepreneur behind Tala Manila.
Nazareno will also be speaking about her work and influences behind her designs on August 15, Saturday at 4 PM.

Tala Manila

Tala Manila is located at Unit 103, Three Salcedo Place,121 Tordesillas St, Salcedo Village, Makati City.
For more information, visit Tala Manila at Facebook.

Share Assumption love/pride with pretty totes for a cause

Each year, Assumption girls celebrating the 25th year anniversary of their batch graduation get together in a grand reunion called velada (Spanish for evening party).
Aside from the performing at the main event, it’s a tradition for alumni to raise funds for Assumption mission schools, such as St. Martin’s School in Baguio City; San Juan Nepumoceno School in Malibay, Pasay City; Assumpta Technical School in San Simon, Pampanga; Socio-Educational Center in Barrio Obrero, Iloilo City, Assumption Grade School in Passi, Iloilo; Sta. Rita Academy in Sibalom, Antique; St. Vincent Academy in Kauswagan, Lanao del Norte; and Xavier de Kibangay High School in Lantapan, Bukidnon.

Assumption tote

This year, Assumption High School Class of 1990 is selling the Like An AC Girl tote bag at Php 1,500 each.
Made of natural heavy weight canvas, the stylish tote also features a distinct red AC plaid luggage tag.
Size: 17.5”W x 15”H x 4.5”D.

Assumption tote

To order, contact Maja Gamboa at +63 917 530 0866.
The tote and other AC items are orderable or sometimes available at Pops Candy Store, G/F Milky Way Building, 900 Arnaiz Road, Makati City. Shipping available upon request.
Email: majaqgamboa@yahoo.com

Winners: Chuva’s baby giveaway

965 entries later, here are the winners of my latest giveaway for moms and babies.
Eight winners were selected via random.org.

My creation

Dannette Fernando of Quezon City gets the Cuddlebug bed from Youji & Me

Cuddlebug crib
Cuddlebug crib

Jennifer Wong of Cavite gets the yellow Capella stroller, while Khrishia Anne Sedenio of Quezon City will get the blue Capella stroller—both from Youji & Me

CAPELLA Cony Premium - yellowCapella stroller

The following will receive the diaper bags filled with Mustela products and vitamins from Vizcarra Pharmaceutical:
Charlyn May Wuthrich of Iloilo
Sunshine Fariñas of Taguig
Roanne Certeza of Cainta
Angel Harris of Taguig
Krystle Tiu of Tondo

Mustela giveaway
Mustela giveaway
Vizcarra vitamins

Winners will be emailed on how to receive their prizes.
Thank you sponsors and to everyone who joined! Watch for my next giveaway soon.

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