Sisters Paula Peralejo-Fernandez and Rica Peralejo-Bonifacio share quite a few things together: they've both appeared on the small and big screens, share a love for travel and now play the role of mom to their young sons.
When it comes to personal style, they both agree on the classic appeal and functionality of a button down top and accessorizing with statement pieces.
Here, they share with us how their styles have evolved since they became moms and some tips on how to become an expert in mixing and matching:
On personal style:
Paula: "My style is very basic. I’m not so much into prints unless it’s stripes or a certain type of floral print. I like basic tops and bottoms because I like to add more to my outfit through accessorizing such as jewelry, scarves and hats."
"For tops and bottoms, I gravitate towards neutral colors like gray, navy blue and white. I love white because it’s so easy to mix with anything and you always look polished even if you’re just wearing a button down polo. Then I use mustard as a complementing color."
Paula wears a blue top from Elin with (1) Zeta necklace complemented with (2) Frost stalactite necklace
Rica: "I would say functional Japanese. I gravitate towards boxy, breathable silhouettes that allows you to move and work but also without looking too plain or uniform-ish. My friends would tell me that my clothes don’t look like they’re related to each other but when you take a closer look, they’re really easy to mix and match. "
"I love turtlenecks because I have a long neck and I know that it makes me look longer. I also gravitate towards tight-fitting tops because if I wear loose tops, I look like I’m drowning in fabric or the clothes are wearing me and not the other way around. I tend to gravitate towards tops that accentuate my upper body or the leanest part of my body and then I just hide all of my secrets below with my boxy and loose pants."
Rica wears her red turtleneck with Uniqlo torn jeans, (3) Vause earrings and (4) Moira ring
On what she wears on a typical day:
Paula: "Right now, I’m nursing so I wear nursing tops that are also in neutral colors. I wear more pants in soft fabrics than jeans. On a normal day, I don’t really put on a lot of accessories but if I’m meeting up with friends or will be out for a while, I would usually wear statement earrings. I used to not leave the house without necklaces but I’ve shifted to wearing earrings with hooks so it’s easier to remove. Statement earrings are a great accent and you become more presentable just by putting them on."
Paula wearing a white button down dress with (5) Carina earrings
Rica: "I’m a jeans and pants person so I play around with bottoms. I have a very small waist and big hips so I capitalize more on the waist and would usually go for tops I can tuck in. I mix tailored pieces with more casual ones or something very stiff with something loose. I always like to mix things up to avoid looking too rigid."
Rica wears her Uniqlo jeans with a gray Gap knit vest, white long sleeve shirt, (6) Jin gemstone necklace and (7) sphere necklace (part of Ursa layering necklace)
On shoes, bags and jewelry:
Paula: "Scarves have always been an essential. For shoes, sandals and bags, I always end up choosing tan."
Paula's everyday essentials include a tan pouch, a printed scarf, classic shades and lippies
Rica: "I like to play around when it comes to accessories. My wardrobe is made up of pieces that I can easily put together and I make it a point for my accessories to add a certain kick to my outfit. I like colorful, festive and statement bags, earrings and necklaces. I will have statement earrings or necklaces or a very plain bag with an interesting strap."
Rica's essentials include a monogram leather zip pouch and a camera with a printed strap
On how her style has evolved:
Paula: "I now restrict myself to tops that are easy for breastfeeding like nursing tops and button down tops. What I really miss wearing are my tunics and caftans. I used to wear them all the time because they’re so easy to wear and can go from day to night. I was living in resort wear for a long time. Now they’re just in the closet and I can’t let go of them because I know I’ll return to them one day."
Rica: "I’ve always been more into comfort and function rather than being fashionable. I was always the type who would wear flats and sneakers because they allowed me to move. More than evolving, I found the right time or era that fits my style. I’ve always loved Japanese fashion since the ‘90’s and they found my style too quirky back then. Now it’s a global trend and people have accepted that kind of aesthetic."
Rica: "More than any other time in my life, motherhood made me realize that my style fits all kinds of lifestyles and life moments. Being a mom also allowed me to wear more polo shirts. When I was breastfeeding, there weren’t a lot of choices when it came to clothes and that’s when I saw the value of a button down shirt."
Paula: "You can always start with the basics like pieces in neutral colors and stripes then try experimenting with accessories little by little so you can find out what your style is and what suits you better. For new moms, I can’t recommend nursing tops enough. Stay away from necklaces at this point because your child will definitely grab it. Stick to hook earrings because they’re very easy to take out once your baby starts playing with it."
Paula wearing a white polo with (8) Cassian tassel earrings and (9) Tinsel bracelet
Rica: "Start with who you are in terms of personality, lifestyle and body type. The truth is, I only know as much as I know of myself. Even fashion experts are probably geared towards a certain style or personality and they can never know exactly what feels right for someone."
Rica wears a mustard top with (10) Samara necklace set
Rica: "In anything in life, you have to know yourself really well. The base when it comes to style and fashion is yourself. Look at people who have the same body type as you and take notes from them. Train your eyes to see what can work for you."
Follow Paula on Instagram: @mama_the_explorer
Follow Rica on Instagram: @ricaperalejo
Photography by Sheila Catilo (@sheilacatilo)
Make-up by Tamara Pineda (@tamarapineda_)
(1) Zeta necklace
(3) Vause earrings
(4) Moira ring
(5) Carina earrings
(6) Jin gemstone necklace - exclusively available at Aranaz
(8) Cassian tassel earrings - coming soon!
(9) Tinsel bracelet
(10) Samara necklace
If you’re pregnant, nursing a newborn or raising a toddler, chances are you’ve attended a class or bought supplies from The Parenting Emporium, a social enterprise that specializes in products and activities that help parents in taking care of their little ones.
TPE founders Beng Feliciano and Maricel Cua believe that parenting is a legacy and that parenthood is a journey best shared with a community.
When it comes to style, the dynamic duo shares a penchant for neutrals but have contrasting tastes when it comes to accessorizing. Read on to know more about their style and their tips on building a chic and child-friendly wardrobe:
How would you describe your personal style?
Beng: "Classic with occasions of flexibility. I like clean cuts and basic pieces in neutrals and hues of blue. I love stripes and slip-on-and-go dresses. I find certain lacey pieces very soft and feminine."
Beng wearing a white drape top from Crisp with (1) Nave tassel earrings and (2) Flow infinity necklace
"There are times when I get so busy that I just don whatever is quick and comfortable without any regard to looking classic in any way. Flexible can also mean that I like trying something I don't usually wear on rare occasions."
Beng wearing a striped top with (3) Catalina bracelet set and (4) Rein earrings
Maricel: "I go for wearable items that are timeless because who knows when I can find the time to go shopping again! And, it's always fun when I can create different looks from the same piece of clothing through layering or accessorizing or just mixing and matching items in my closet. Taking an old piece and turning it into something new and different appeals to my creative side. I have to admit, I still have pieces from when I was in college! Unfortunately, the whole Mari Kondo style of organizing has not reached my closet yet! I do practice keeping some pieces in storage for when I feel like they fit me well again. So sometimes I end up "shopping" in our own storage room!"
"Most of my clothes are in darker colors - black, blue, gray, brown. I like A-lines because I don't like fabric that hugs the lower part of my body. Now that I'm pregnant though, I appreciate clothes that show off my baby bump - this is probably the only time that I would go for dresses that stretch and hug me."
Maricel wearing her printed dress with (5) Florets necklace and (6) Rein earrings
On what they wear on a typical day:
Beng: "Jeans, shorts, shirt and white shoes."
Maricel: "Now that I'm pregnant, the most comfy outfit for me is a flowy dress. I prefer simple ones versus those with prints because I love accessorizing according to my mood that day. When I'm not pregnant, what I wear depends on the weather as well. I would most likely be wearing jeans on cooler days or a dress if the temperature is warm that day. I'd also wear more sleeveless tops than I do now."
Maricel wearing a red Elin dress with (7) Bloom necklace and her own Heyjow hoop earrings from the Rekindle collection
Beng: "I used to be a big bag type of person but because of my back concerns, I go for smaller bags these days."
Beng's collection of bags include a functional blue shoulder bag and a couple of smaller bags with embroidered details. What's inside her bag: a trusty notebook, Chimes Ginger Chews, and her favorite Doterra essential oils.
Maricel: "Medium-sized shoulder bag or casual totes, bags with comfortable straps because I tend to load my bags so if they have skinny or chain straps, they will dig into my skin."
Beng: "I find white pieces very attractive."
Beng tends to gravitate towards neutral colors even in accessories. Seen here are her favorite pieces with her collection of Heyjow accessories.
Maricel: "I like dainty pieces and gravitate more towards stones versus metal, feminine versus exotic, individual pieces versus layers."
Maricel's bag collection include a yellow tote and gold weave clutch. Also seen is her collection of Heyjow pieces mostly made up of single necklaces with stones and crystals.
On how their style has evolved since they became moms:
Beng: "I have a preference for clothing with pockets – pants, dresses and tops. It's very practical! I go for fuss-free pieces, which means not a lot of buttons, complicated zippers, straps or layers."
On Beng: (8) Sunna charm necklace and (9) Prisma necklace. On Maricel: (10) Corazon necklace
Maricel: "I actually think that I dress better now that I am a mom simply because I pay more attention to the wearability, quality, and overall cohesiveness of my outfits. Also, since you are running about all the time, the realization is there that it is very easy to look awful and stressed out! I have become pickier when I shop and I also have become more critical with what suits my body type because if you have children that you carry, hug, and play around with, fabric can hug you in the most unflattering ways! Also, because your activity level reaches dizzying heights, you have to ensure that what you wear will not hamper movement, become a hazard to you or your children, and will still feel comfortable even if you sweat."
Maricel wearing a cut-out top from Details with (11) Corazon necklace and her own Heyjow white druzy drop earrings made exclusively for Aranaz
Style tips for moms:
Beng: "Go for basic colors and simple cuts. Never compromise comfort. For those with very young children, you should put on clothes that will make you accept a splutter here and a drool there. Also, accessorize appropriately which means anticipating situations (a child who likes to sleep while being carried by mommy will find certain necklaces bothersome)."
Beng's white-on-white ensemble is easy to put on, comfortable and exudes classic chic
Maricel: "I'd say to be open to trying on a lot of things and experimenting. I'm an advocate of individual style and comfort so whatever works for one mom will most likely not work for another mom. Enjoy the process and observe what other people wear. If you see someone wearing something you would like to try, don't be shy to ask them where they got it from!
Maricel wears her red dress with: (12) Bloom necklace and her own Heyjow hoop earrings from the Rekindle collection. Beng goes all white and tops it off with the (13) Cirrus teardrop pearl necklace
Maricel: Bring a trusted partner/friend/family member with you when you shop. You may be comfortable in something you have chosen but others may see something unflattering when you turn, bend, or even just from your back view. Above all, have fun and don't despair, your personal style is out there somewhere. Might as well enjoy the search!"
Follow The Parenting Emporium on Instagram: @theparentingemporium
Photography by Sheila Catilo (@sheilacatilo)
(1) Nave tassel earrings - coming soon
(2) Flow infinity necklace - coming soon
(4) and (6) Rein earrings - coming soon
(5) Florets necklace - part of Garden Party collection (exclusively available at Aranaz)
(7) and (12) Bloom necklace - part of Garden Party collection (exclusively available at Aranaz)
(8) Sunna charm necklace - coming soon
(9) Prisma necklace - coming soon
(10) and (11) Corazon necklace
(13) Cirrus teardrop pearl necklace - coming soon
Cat Juan Ledesma’s style is bigger than her personality – it is a movement in itself. Cat’s love for thoughtfully made Philippine products led her and her friends to create Try Local PH, a community that promotes quality local finds and concepts.
We caught up with Cat one afternoon at 190 Artists Gallery where she talked about some of her favorite brands and shared the best style advice she got from her mom.
On personal style: “My wardrobe is mostly made up of basics with a splash of bohemian. I’m very drawn to embroidery and local textiles as well as accessories that are either layered or have stones, especially turquoise. I’m not very much of a fashionista. I’m not even going to attempt wearing a certain trend if I know it will not work for me, which is something I learned from my mom. She would always tell me that what’s important is to know what fits my style and body.”
Cat wearing an embroidered skirt from Kaayo with (1) Luneta necklace set in dark green
On what she wears on a typical day: “These days, my everyday outfit for school are often skirts and shift dresses. What I like about shift dresses is that you don’t have to think about a top and a bottom; you just pick your print for the day, put it on with your accessories and you’re out the door. I’ve also been putting a lot of statement skirts into my wardrobe lately.”
Cat wearing a skirt from Anthill Fabric Gallery with (2) Catalina bracelet set and (3) Costa hoop earrings
On jewelry: “I used to raid my mom’s huge treasure chest filled with things she bought from her travels and her collection of costume jewelry. Now I have my own little chest and I’m slowly building my collection.”
Cat's picks (from top, left): (4) Panama tassel earrings, (5) Catalina bracelet set, (6) Costa hoop earrings, (7) crescent necklace and ball chain from Luneta necklace set, (8) Sierra beaded necklace, (9) Mariana bracelet set, (10) Rama leaf necklace and (11) Vuelta bracelet
Cat's closet is full of pieces that have a story to tell just like this canvas tote made for Danjugan Island and Emthunzini hat from South Africa
On shoes: “I love local craftsmanship when it comes to shoes. Some of my favorite brands include Zarah Juan and Suelas. My suede mule pair from Suelas is one of my favorites. If you check out Try Local PH, you’ll see that there are so many wonderful shoe brands in the country that you can support.”
Cat wearing an emerald dress from Better Basics with (12) Mariana bracelet set, (13) Vuelta bracelet bangle and (14) Rama leaf necklace
This embroidered pair by Zarah Juan is one of Cat's favorites
On bags: “I’m very partial to leather bags. If a bag is done well with high-quality leather, it gets better with time. Local brands that I love include Katre. They have a line called Camden, which features tourist bags made with buttery soft leather that are great for travel. I’m actually collaborating with them to create a travel bag that will hopefully be launched in December. Outside local brands, my one indulgence is the half-moon A.P.C. bag that develops a very pretty patina over time. My Cuyana leather tote is another favorite, which I’ve had for almost two years and it still looks brand-new.”
Cat is very drawn to bohemian details like the playful colors of this travel towel from By Fini and this wooden bag with leather accents by Charming Baldemor
Style tips: “Rather than purchasing new fast fashion items, buy pre-loved items instead. This way, you’re helping the environment by giving clothes more wear-time. There are a lot of stores online and you can go to my little store where I sell pre-loved clothes and bags from my closet as well as from my friends.”
Cat wearing (15) Sierra beaded necklace and (16) Avila ring with her teal Mich Araullo dress
“One useful tip that my mom gave me is to find a good and reliable kusturera (seamstress). Buying something off-the-rack doesn’t mean you can’t alter it. A kusturera can accommodate your preferences and make your clothes fit your body better, which makes a world of difference. Cutting even just an inch from a dress will change the way it looks and the way you carry it. There might be a number of items in your closet that would benefit from that and you’ll probably find yourself wearing them more often. When you see that they fit better, you feel better as well.”
Follow Cat on Instagram: @catjuanledesma
Photography by Sheila Catilo (@sheilacatilo)
Shot on location at 190 Artists Gallery (@190artistsgallery)
(1) and (7) Luneta necklace set in dark green
(2) and (5) Catalina bracelet set
(3) and (6) Costa hoop earrings - coming soon to Lanai
4) Panama tassel earrings - coming soon
(8) and (15) Sierra beaded necklace - coming soon
(9) and (12) Mariana bracelet set
(10) and (14) Rama leaf necklace
(11) and (13) Vuelta bracelet
(16) Avila ring