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Trad Cordi Info
Wednesday, 16 August 2006
Fashion Statements from the Cordilleras
Fashion Statements from the Cordilleras
By Maria Elena Catajan
Published in Malaya

BAGUIO CITY — In celebration of Cordillera Month, the distinct culture and heritage of the highlands was showcased at the SM City Atrium last week in a fashion show and exhibit
Featuring local fashion designers, a line of clothing and jewelry were added to the usual upland products displayed; proving local artists could indeed compete globally.
Highland products like coffee, tea, rice, local weave and wine were also presented.
The audience was witness to an array of collections from leading local designers, who have taken the path to international acclaim. Among them were Narda Capuyan of the Narda’s Fashion Collection and Evelyn Ibays from the Ibays Silver Collection, two of the companies who launched the Cordilleras in the fashion and jewelry international market.
The fashion show added a different twist as models were culled from different government agencies wearing the exclusive Narda Ikat collection made into stylish ponchos, blouses and wraps.
Capuyan’s story has been told and retold to encourage local weavers to perfect the skill and appreciate native color and materials. Inspired by an old Ifugao ikat blanket, Narda’s started 30 years ago in La Trinidad weaving blankets from recycled acrylic yarns.
From the blankets, she moved on to hotel furniture weaving bedspreads, draperies and upholstery. She expanded to bags, shawls, scarves, placemats and rugs.
Ikat has been circulating the globe attracting stores in New York, Europe, Canada and Japan. Her impressive technique of tying and dyeing segments of threads before actual weaving has captured a loyal international market.
Models then entered the stage-wearing top of the line silver products made by the internationally acclaimed Ibay Collection, the collection added glitz and glam to the night.
Baguio City has chosen marketed silver as the One Town One Product (OTOP), making products by Ibay’s led the pack of silver craft designers in the area, a favorite of residents and tourists alike, silver has been on the top must buys from the city.
Silver has become a favorite accessory for formal and non-formal wear, preferred by all age groups. The Ibay collection has produced earrings, bracelets, rings, and necklaces and expanded into making purses and evening bags.
The company started in 1974 as a home based business making silver filigree products and has since long established itself as the leading jewelry company in the area. The management of Ibays has also advocated for the production of quality silver craft and has proven the importance of quality over quantity.
Louie Aguilar, the show’s director has been producing a variety of shows for the city for years, utilizing local talent and products to boost tourism and advocating for the use of Cordillera products in the fashion industry "I only utilized six models from my personal collection, the models came from government line agencies," adding that the move made the celebration of Cordillera month more meaningful.
The designs of Local Khazzat Handicrafts by Melinda Castro were also modeled. Khasa, which is the Ibaloi term for destiny, displayed an array of bags and handicrafts.
The Mayat-an collection imparts a statement to preserve traditional ethnic design skills derived from the lifestyles of the people of Ifugao.
The celebration of Cordillera month has indeed proven that the region is a leading hub of arts crafts and fashion

Posted by tradcordi at 2:21 PM JST
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Friday, 26 May 2006
Don't travel With fake DVDs
Going Abroad?.... Know What Not to Bring.

by Art Tibaldo

During my travel to the US and Canada after the eventful 911 tragedy, airports including our very own NAIA have intensified their security measures to a point that almost every bits and pieces that a traveler carry are thoroughly checked and scrutinized.

In 2004, I learned from an email group portal that a Filipina who just passed her nursing here was immediately deported by immigration officials at a US terminal upon inspecting from her luggage pages of photocopied CGFNS reviewer originally published in the states.

Carrying pirated DVDs, VCDs, audio CDs, softwares or computer programs is strictly banned all over and this has caused the deployment of media forensic experts in many points of entries worldwide so that fake items can be immediately be checked.

As of this writing, I am not yet sure whether powerpoint presentrations in CD-ROM or optical media authored by a person other than the traveler are allowed at airport terminals without a written consent by its creator. "Content Creator" is a term or title used to identify the authors of the disc's contents.

In my case as a multi-media artist, I authored and "burned" my own powerpoint and video presentations into compact disks (CDs) and digital video disks (DVDs). Confident that my name appears in the file properties of my presentation as inscripted by my working software, I wonder if media forensic experts will go to the extent of verifying the true authors of such materials.

A question can also be raised with the mass use of USB flash drives or portable storage devices nowadays. These solid state media are small enough to be concealed in small bag pockets or used as a key chain. One or two gigabyte of storage capacity of a flash drive can accommodate as many files as that of two to five CDs.

The Philippine's Optical Media Act of 2003 states that t he Optical Media Board shall prescribe source identification codes or SID codes for all persons, establishments or entities authoring and mastering optical media. As for me, I'm not yet sure whether to secure one since I haven't heard of someone having such.
I also see a grey area from the provisions of the Act when it comes to USB drives. Since it is always best to be sure, one should not carry a drive with copied contents especially original movies from Hollywood.
Hawai'i Consul General Ariel Abadilla whom I have met during my cultural diplomacy as ethnographer-in-residence at the East West Center issued a warning to Filipino-Americans there that visiting relatives carrying pirated items can spoil and jeopardize their travel.

Abadilla also reported that the US Embassy's Consular Section recently received a report that the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) searched the bag of a Filipino on NW 72 in Detroit. During the said search, 70-80 compact discs, 30-40 empty DVD jackets and 10-20 DVDs were found. Abadilla added that since the travelers were not American citizens, their visas were cancelled and they returned to the Philippines. Had they been Americans according to Abadilla, they could have been subject to arrest and criminal prosecution in addition to civil fines and penalties.

When I went to Honolulu this February, I actually brought three Ilocano Karaoke VCDs and I saw to it that it bears the hologram of the Videogram Regulatory Board which is now the OMB. To ascertain that my travel to US is trouble free, I even carried with me the receipt of the VCDs.

My Friend Gabby Ruliva of Pinsao, a retired US navy felt sorry to his relative who refused to carry a DVD containing my coverage of the successful 2006 Lang-ay Festival in Bontoc for fear of a possible problem that they might encounter upon reaching a US Terminal. By the way, traveling with a laptop with an unlicensed operating system (OS) like the latest Windows XP and upgrades may also pose a problem so think again before bringing an item out of the country.

Posted by tibaldoarts at 11:54 AM JST
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Friday, 17 March 2006
Trade Talk by Art Tibaldo

5S and Productivity

TBR March 19-20 2006

Last Thursday during the Alay Sa Kalinisan Hour TV talk show at Mountainview Cable TV, we discussed productivity in relation to a healthy workplace and the environment as a whole. Dean Leonarda Aguinalde of the College of Business Administration of the University of the Cordilleras discussed the often heard about 5S (five-S) which UC as an educational institution is very much into. The discussion stemmed on the query why Japan can be as clean and at the same time progressive as an industrial nation.

So what is this thing called 5S? Based on Japanese words that begin with ‘S’, the 5S Philosophy focuses on effective work place organization and standardized work procedures. 5S simplifies your work environment, reduces waste and non-value activity while improving quality efficiency and safety.

Sort – (Seiri) the first S focuses on eliminating unnecessary items from the workplace. An effective visual method to identify these unneeded items is called red tagging. A red tag is placed on all items not required to complete your job. These items are then moved to a central holding area. This process is for evaluation of the red tag items. Occasionally used items are moved to a more organized storage location outside of the work area while unneeded items are discarded. Sorting is an excellent way to free up valuable floor space and eliminate such things as broken tools, obsolete jigs and fixtures, scrap and excess raw material.

Set In Order (Seiton) is the second of the 5Ss and focuses on efficient and effective storage methods. In Japan, almost everything is compact and every space is maximized. While I was there during my JICA scholarship, we recycle videotapes used by former scholars to (would you believe?) save on space.

You must ask yourself these questions:

1. What do I need to do my job?
2. Where should I locate this item?
3. How many of this item do I really need?

Strategies for effective Set In Order are: painting floors, outlining work areas and locations, shadow boards, and modular shelving and cabinets for needed items such as trash cans, brooms, mop and buckets. Imagine how much time is wasted every day looking for an item such as a broom? The broom should have a specific location where all employees can find it. "A place for everything and everything in its place."

Shine: (Seiso) Once you have eliminated the clutter and junk that has been clogging your work areas and identified and located the necessary items, the next step is to thoroughly clean the work area. Daily follow-up cleaning is necessary in order to sustain this improvement. Workers take pride in a clean and clutter-free work area and the Shine step will help create ownership in the equipment and facility. Workers will also begin to notice changes in equipment and facility such as location of cleaning detergents, pails and buckets, misalignment of certain machine parts etc. These changes, if left unattended, could lead to equipment failure and loss of production that can cause impact your company’s line of service.

Standardize: (Seiketsu) Once the first three 5S’s have been implemented, you should concentrate on standardizing best practice in your work area. Allow your employees to participate in the development of such standards. They are a valuable but often overlooked source of information regarding their work. Think of what Sony, Toyota, Fujitsu, and and even Jollibee would be without effective work standards.

Sustain: (Shitsuke) This is by far the most difficult S to implement and achieve. Many organizations that had problems with their waste management program had problems implementing 5S. Their tendency is to return to their old habits and primitive ways of doing things. The fifth S focuses on defining a new status quo and standard of work place organization.

Once fully implemented, the 5S process can increase morale, create positive impressions on customers, and increase efficiency and organization. Not only will employees feel better about where they work, the effect on continuous improvement can lead to less waste, better quality and faster lead times. A telltale sign of a productive organization aside from the profit generated from its operation is the good image that it projects. When constantly practiced and eventually become a work habit, 5S will definitely contribute to the growth of its stakeholders. After all, it is an investment.

Posted by tibaldoarts at 11:53 AM WST
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Friday, 9 December 2005
Where Are Our Creative People? by Art Tibaldo
Mood:  amorous
Now Playing: Let's Animate
Many of us Filipinos are naturally creative. We excel in many fields of art be it in the visual, performing, music, fashion, you name it, we Pinoys have remarkable achievements. Pinggot Vinluan Zulueta was my classmate in UST College of Fine Arts. While we were still in college, he became the Varsitarian’s Editorial Cartoonist. About ten year’s after our school days, he ended up as a beat photojournalist of the Manila Bulletin. I later found out that Pinggot migrated to New Zealand and this is due to the high cost of living in Manila and the low income that the industry dictates. Pinggot is now an aerial photographer living with his own family and his artworks can be seen through the internet. If you missed the sarcastic but politically correct caricatures in one of our national dailies, it is because, Jose Tence Ruiz whom we fondly call Boogie way back in UST days is now gainfully employed in Singapore as an artist cum creative director. Cesar Asar, a popular comic strip is no longer seen in circulation. Its creator Roxlee who was my co-scholar in MOWELFUND is now doing well as an animator in a Japanese based animation studio. Over the past years, we have learned that the distinctive elements that we Filipinos provide to the global market like creativity, artistry, craftsmanship, and innovativeness, are becoming more and more apparent and these are valuable factors that differentiate us from our neighbors in the global community. In September this year, DTI Secretary Peter B. Favila said that the Department of Trade and Industry is continuously seeking ways to reinforce the country's creative infrastructure. The DTI Chief added that the department remains upbeat about the prospects of the Creative Industries as a driver for economic vitality. The DTI is confident in the value and strength of our human resources and their capacity for economically rewarding endeavors. Grace Dimaranan, the CEO, of Top Peg Animation and Vice President of the Animation Council of the Philippines who was here for a DTI organized IT forum e-mailed me saying that the industry needs new batch of 2D animators. Dimaranan said that a course where students can learn the basics & principles of animation in the Industry-level standards can be offered by her organization in Baguio. The course will require a 3 to 4 months training with per month evaluation of the capability of student basing on drawing skill, technical skill, attitude & creativity. The animation executive said that although their company will provide the trainor’s fee, It would be best if we can get sponsors, funding and assistance from LGU's to pursue this. If there's a private organization or businessmen willing to provide assistance, the training cost estimated to be about 18-24 thousand per participant will be greatly reduced. Those interested in the basic two-dimensional and 3D computer based animation may get in touch with this writer at the DTI-CAR office at 3rd floor, Jesnor Building, Carino Street or email me at: Let’s animate.

Posted by tradcordi at 9:50 AM WST
Updated: Friday, 9 December 2005 10:26 AM WST
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Tuesday, 6 December 2005
Trad Cordi Notes
Mood:  amorous
Now Playing: From ORD

Posted by tradcordi at 2:54 PM WST
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Wednesday, 23 November 2005
1st Bamboo Sestival
Bamboo Booms in Abra
Abra Celebrates 1st Bamboo Festival

The entrepreneurs of Abra have more than one hundred one (101) uses of Bamboo.
The world’s fastest growing plant is not only used as a construction material, plant guard, fence, and fish cage but to the Abrenios, bamboo is a big business.
The recent launching of the first ever bamboo festival in the lowland town of Bangued again showcased the ingenuity and creativity of local folks engaged in the trade.

Visitors to this festival that opened from November 10 to 12 had an assortment of bamboo products ranging from hats, baskets, table mats, chairs, tables and novelty items to choose from. Food products such as pickles and noodles made from bamboo shoots added variety to the display items. New designs in fashion accessories, ladies bags, trays, home furnishings, roofing and flooring materials are additions to the trade exhibit.

Various activities such as skills Olympics, sports competitions, musical rendition, food exhibit and an investment opportunity seminar added variety to the festival.
Organized by the Provincial Bamboo Industry Cluster Committee (PBICC) through the sponsorship of the province’s leadership headed by Governor Vicente P. Valera and Mayor Ma. Zita C. Valera of Bangued, the festival also drew local and national support from the DENR, TESDA and the DTI with its attached bureaus such as the Small and Medium Enterprise Development Group (SMEDG) and the Cottage Industry Technology Center (CITC).

In Bucay, Abra, Undersecretary Zorayda Amelia Alonzo of DTI-SMEDG, Governor Valera, Mayor Rudolfo Bernardez IV and DTI-CAR Regional Caretaker Marites F. Damian inaugurated and opened the town’s Bamboo Production Center. The facility is equipped with bamboo slizing and ripping machines provided by CITC to boost the productivity of the local cooperatives engaged in bamboocraft.

During the Investment Opportunity Seminar, Philippine Bamboo Foundation Vice President Romi Santa Ana discussed the potentials of the bamboo industry in the global market.
With the use of appropriate technology, fine craftsmanship and innovative designs, Santa Ana said that bamboo can generate more employment and raise revenues to both local and national government. During the fair, Santa Ana presented different bamboo products that are mostly made in China to provide local entrepreneurs an idea of what kind of products can be made out of Bamboo. “The Chinese are now manufacturing beer out of Bamboo extracts and it tastes good” Santa Ana added with a regret of not being able to bring a sample.

Fatima Tangan of the Ecosystem Research and Development Service of DENR-CAR discussed the ecological role and economic benefits of bamboo as a potential resource for the agriculture and trade industry. Saying that there are about sixty eight (68) bamboo species available in the Philippines, Tangan encouraged the farmers and manufacturers to plant more bamboos especially the giant species in Abra’s vast land. There is a constant demand for poles and the Bayog bamboo plantations must also be expanded to meet the growing market Tangan added.

Also during the seminar, Entrepreneur Romeo Balbin narrated his experience with bamboo saying that before the total log ban was imposed by DENR, wood furniture was his main line of business. After few years of make or break with bamboo, Balbin’s products finally took off owing it to the various trade fairs and market encounters coordinated by the DTI.
Today, Balbin is considered one of the successful businessmen of Abra having marketed his products to Europe, US, Canada and elsewhere around the globe.

All considered… with the soaring cost of lumber, the total log ban, a traditional craft deeply rooted in Filipino culture, the technological advancement in bamboo processing, a renewable resource that matures in a span of three years, high value products and proven successes of Asian neighbor’s bamboo industry…what more can Abra or Filipino farmers and traders ask for? The organizers and participants agreed to a response made during the seminar…”plant more bamboos today and reap the benefits tomorrow and perhaps launch another festival.” Art Tibaldo/DTI-CAR Info

Posted by tradcordi at 9:34 AM WST
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Thursday, 22 September 2005
Barangay CAPT
Trade Talk by Art Tibaldo

Tinimbang Ka Ngunit Kulang, Tubog Sa Ginto, Kastilyong Buhangin: these may be typical titles of Filipino films but same are lecture headings of a forum conducted in Baguio by Gateway East and Department of Trade and Industry Region 2.

The forum was dubbed Barangay Consumers Assistance and Production Team or Barangay CAPT participated by about three hundred Kagawads and Punong Barangays from the Cagayan Valley area.

Atty. Willy Clemente of DTI-CAR discussed what the buying public should do in "Tinimbang Ka Ngunit Kulang" and how buyers can detect and report opportunists who do not follow weight standards.

The topic Anak Ka Ng Pirata presented by a speaker from the Optical Media Board outlined how pirated products in VCDs, DVDs and softwares destroy our economy and steal the rights of intellectual property owners.

The OMB speaker says that legitimate companies spend on research and development, quality control, royalties and government taxes while pirates ride on the efforts made by others.

Ex Cop Reynaldo Jaylo who is now a Director of the Presidential Task Force on Illegal Recruitment explained how to detect and fight illegal recruiters in Ang Nilokong Bayani.

Jaylo with his self styled presentation explained the causes of illegal recruitment as; Disfunction in society, Employment scarcity, Value distortions, Ignorance and Liar recruiters and traffickers completing the acronym DEVIL.

In Patay Kang Baka Ka, the speaker from the National Meat Inspection Committee explained how one can detect fresh meat from double dead meat.

The NMIC speaker illustrated condemnable meat products as having tell tale signs such as inflamed and swelling body parts, signs of hemorrhage, pale soft exudative and severed liver or lungs caused by larva or roundworms. Meat buyers should check for normal meat color with no blood splashes and unusual odor.

One topic discussed what consumers need to know about the price tags and labels in 'The Price is Right". The speaker from DTI Region 2 quoted the Price Tag Law which states that all consumer products shall bear an appropriate price tag, label or marking indicating the price of the article.

Posted by tradcordi at 12:01 AM JST
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