I’m back home in the Philippines and am so inspired by tropical wear and Filipino craftsmanship. There is so much creativity and talent in this small archipelago, and every time I come home, I get so inspired by the local brilliance.
Whenever I am home, I make it a point to meet with many of the individuals my family’s non-profit organization, The Andres Soriano Foundation, has touched. Hearing about the livelihood of the resilient Filipino people has such an ephemeral effect, and their smiles and positivity about life are constant reminders to count blessings and give gratitude.
One of the components of ASF is to help small island communities help themselves. Essentially, we try to teach residents how to improve upon their particular craft, whether it be seaweed farming, fishing or weaving. Because, I’m fascinated with artistry and craftsmanship, I love to spend hours with the weavers, speaking to them about their passion and dexterity for their art.
The ladies gave me a ton of woven banig beach bags (one can never have too many bags, right?!), some with intricate designs and some more plain, and I thought, why not jazz up one of the more simple designs?
I took a can of silver aerosol paint and sprayed both sides, the bottom and handles of the banig bag. I tried to give even light coatings by keeping a bit of distance between the can and the bag.
Once dried, I made a bunch of colorful pom poms (nothing screams tropical like some neon pom poms) and casually tied them to one of the straps. Here’s how I did them:
2 toilet paper holders
To make the smaller pom pom’s:
Wrap the yarn around the prongs of the fork until thick. Cut apart from spool.
Cut about a 12 inch piece of yarn and tie it exactly down the middle of the fork. Pull tightly and tie with a knot.
Remove the wound yarn from the fork and cut both ends off.
Once all bits are loose, trim the ends a little more. Fluff edges and shape to a circle.
To make the larger pom pom’s:
Wrap the yarn around two toilet paper holders until thick. Cut apart from spool.
Cut a 12 inch piece of yarn and tie it between the two holders. Tie a loose knot and then release the wound yarn off the rolls.
Tighten the knots and secure with additional ties.
Cut both ends. Once all bits are loose, trim the ends a little more. Fluff edges and shape to a circle.
Since I’ve made my super glam straw bag, I haven’t stopped wearing it. I’m delighted not only in the story and craftsmanship behind the bag, but that the straw is light yet durable and that I’ve added fun, happy and whimsical design elements too. The best part is, I can’t stop wearing it with a smile!