Rajo Laurel is one of the most respected and highly celebrated fashion designers in the Philippines. He has been in the fashion business for almost 10 years. He has numerous clients from all over the country. Many brides-to-be choose him to be the designer for their wedding dress.
His major galas are: Asya, The Leaf, Optical Illusions, Four Seasons Bridal Fair, L'Oreal Trend Show 2003, Tease de Boda and Rajo Red.
Early life and career
He first experimented in fashion designing at the age of 11 by making clothes for his sister's Barbie dolls. He would spend days daydreaming about beautiful women drifting by, dressed in elegant gowns made of rich fabrics. More often than not, these daydreams would end up in notebooks and his mathematics notebook would be filled with sketches.
He received his formal training from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York. His talent for design allowed him to bag important fashion awards from abroad.
- 1993 - introduced to the public by being a finalist in Mega Magazine's First Young Designer Competition and winning 2nd place in the Asean Young Designers' Competition.
- 1994 - received the Air France Designer of the Year Award
- 1995 - won 3rd place in the Smirnoff Fashion Design Awards
- 1996 - voted Most Promising Designer of the Year
- 1997 - received a Special Award for his collections in Tokyo, Japan
- 1998 - received the distinction of The Loop’s (Editor’s Choice Award) Favorite Designer
- Rajo Laurel Enterprises (RLE) - specializes in quality made-to-order couture clothing.
- House of Laurel (HOL) - specializes in ready-to-wear couture clothing. It offers free personal styling by trained in-house stylists, and its website is tooled for online shopping Laurel is president of HOL, which consist of the following:
- Rajo - designer ready-to-wear clothing for women.
- Nine - hip maternity fashion collection for expecting mothers.
- Rajito - fashion for children as well as accessories like bags, jewelry and shoes.
- Laurel et Ross (LER) - is focused on creating and manufacturing stylish corporate uniforms.
This social project that recycles old rags into usable and fashionable bags started when the Ateneo Jesuits approached Laurel for advice on how to help underprivileged women from a certain town earn a living. After seeing that they were making old clothes into rags, he advised them that they could earn further by using their sewing talent and raw materials to make fashionable items. Hence a bag cottage industry was established for them. RIIR is the designer series of Rags2Riches. It is the limited edition fashion collection that upholds style and elegance and advocates for the environment and the marginalized.
- Official Website. (accessed on June 21, 2008).
- Rags2Riches. (accessed on November 06, 2008).
- Rajo's blog. (accessed on November 07, 2008).