Designer Benj Leguiab IV Defends Controversial National Costume Concept

June 2 2019 – “The bangga concept was inspired by the Lady who (is) selling bangas on (sic) their house yard, placing the banga on the banig which (is) one of their source(s) of income,” says Benj Leguiab on his design.

(c) Benj Leguiab IV
Miss Masbate Hannah Arnold’s National costume drew two main yet opposing reactions from pageant fans online. Filipino supporters laud her impressive national costume and choreography while Indonesian onlookers spit harsh comments online accusing the statuesque beauty for allegedly copying an ex-Indonesian beauty queen’s national costume.
Arnold, in a statement published as a comment in her Instagram post, made it clear that neither she nor her team were aware or have seen the Indonesian costume nor have they watched how the ex-beauty queen performed on stage.
In the comments section of  The Qrown‘s Facebook page, pageant followers wanted to hear the designer to address the controversial design. Sympathetic to Hannah’s cause, supporters hope for the designer to speak up and straighten the issue.

Designer Benj Leguiab addressed the issue in a Facebook post reiterating the design inspiration in an earlier post.
“The National Costume was inspired and conceptualized purely from the heritage and rich culture of Cordellera”
(c) Benj Leguiab IV
Leguiab said that he designed the train of costume with banga at the hem as an allude to the  “1860 woman in Kalinga (who) started to make their (sic) own way to help their(sic) families even they (sic) are at home like selling bangas, abaniko, banig and other tools for daily lives.”

“The highlights of which was the traditional banga as a powerful tool in their daily lives. Bangga is used to fetch water and commonly used as water storage in Luzon. It also became a national symbol in the entire archipelago.”
Leguiab hopes “to inspire everyone to appreciate our heritage.”
Designer: @enj Leguiab IV
Stylist: Patrick Henry Mergano
MUA: BryanCuizon
Hair: june Balagtas
Choreography : Juanito Romero Novencido
Photo: Qel Hernz

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