Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Jeans by Viktor

Angelo Comsti
Metro/November 2005

Why buy ready-to-ear when there’s made-to-order? Victorino “Ino” Caluza, 29,asked himself that same question after buying three pairs of Diesel jeans and paying P12,000 on a single purchase. After much thought, it prompted him to make his own pair from scratch and eventually launch his own line – Viktor Jeans.

With only a P1000 capital, he bought fabric at Divisoria, went to a tailor and had his favorite jeans duplicated. It became an instant hit among his friends, and soon they were asking for their own pair of Viktors. He researched the how-to’s on the Internet, learned different aspects of fabric making and, in November 2003, officially opened his customized jeans business. The one-time CD cover graphic artist has become a sough after designer with a prestigious clientele that now includes Lucy Torres, Korina Sanchez, Danding Cojuangco, Celine Lopez, Josephine Knox and even fellow industry designer Randy Ortiz. He’s made over a thousand pairs so far.

What can made-to-order jeans give that RTW can’t? For the most Filipinas, RTW can address problems in the butt and leg area. Men’s major concerns are the belly and length of the pants.

“The design of the jeans is very important. If a girl is bottom-heavy, she should avoid wearing straight-cut jeans because it will only show off her big hips. Instead, she should go for boot cuts to give silhouette to the lower part of her body and achieve balance between the hem and hips. If she is pear-shaped, she shouldn’t be seen in baston pants, as they will make her seem more round. Going for the semi-boot cut or boot cut type can give shape to her body. And when she has long legs, low-rise jeans can make her look short. It’s all about illusion,” he says.

Designing the perfect pair of jeans isn’t just about the cut, he says. The fabric and color play big roles, too. “If the woman has full butt, she should choose a harder fabric to hold her bottom and darker shade to give her a slim silhouette. Plus, some denim fabrics have striped ‘characters’ because of the way it was sewn. Fabrics with ‘characters’ that run vertically also help in shaping the legs.”

The minute details matter, as well. “Somebody who’s petite can project longer looking legs by having smaller front pockets. Seams that have the same color as the jeans enable someone to hide their big hips.”

There is more to discover once you setup an appointment with Ino. Within the half an hour he allots you, he takes your measurements and suggest a design (accessorized back pockets are what’s trendy now), fabric (he has over 100 samples to choose from) and even the outfit that will match your customized pair of jeans. “It’s a consultation in a way. And I want out talk to be very open and casual and not too formal so they won’t hesitate to discuss their physical flaws with me,” he confesses.

There are tailors who can replicate your favorite jeans, and then there is Ino. “I do not make an imitation of an RTW pair, but I come up with an original.

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