Everything You Need To Know About Styling Silk Dresses—There’s A Perfect Piece For Each Body Type!
Silk dresses have come a long way from the bedroom, to the wedding aisle, to the runway, and finally, to the streets. This ‘90s comeback can take a fashionista anywhere from casual to sophisticated—so we’re welcoming the trend back with open arms. They’re comfortable yet chic, light and airy yet polished.
While they may seem like daunting wardrobe pieces, believe it or not, silk dresses can actually work on any body type—you just have to know which cuts and colors flatter and accentuate your assets. Don’t be intimidated—in an exclusive interview with Metro.Style, designer Patricia Baligod, founder of local style label SYNE, breaks down the Fashion 101 on wearing silk!
‘It girls’ like Jessica Wilson, Ava Daza, and Tricia Centenera have landed on Patricia’s roster of clients. Known for creating sophisticated custom silk gowns, Patricia established pop-up stores for SYNE in Retail Lab and Lanai Manila. She also recently opened her atelier at Bonifacio Global City, where she meets her clients for fittings and consultations.
Keep scrolling for tips, tricks, and your dose of fashion fix!
Metro.Style: How did you begin your career as a designer?
Patricia Baligod: Fashion has always been my interest. My mom is a fashionista, and she loved to play dress up with us when we were kids. I also grew up with a lot of girls in the family, and I liked styling my sisters’ outfits.
In college, I took up Fashion Design and Merchandising in De La Salle College of St. Benilde. Afterwards, I pursued Fashion Business at London College of Fashion. This led me to become a branch manager at SM; I was assigned to handle Suiteblanco Mall of Asia. Later on, I handled Forever 21 in SM Aura.
I was very into retail business, but after ending up with a 20% sales growth and launching a styling consultation service at my branch, I still felt that there was something missing. I still saw myself sketching during my break, reading fashion magazines, and scrolling in my Vogue app to keep myself updated on runway trends. That was when I decided to take a risk: I quit my managerial position to pursue my passion in designing. I had a solid retail background and a passion for designing, so I thought of combining them both—hence, SYNE was born. It was originally just a women’s RTW brand, but now it has become a luxury line and a bespoke service.
SYNE showroom located at Bonifacio Global City
MS: Describe your style as a fashion designer.
PB: I make sure that my designs are timely and straight forward, elegant yet sultry. There is always a touch of sophistication in every dress. I experiment with necklines and silhouettes—I want my pieces to look unique and different from each other, so I inject subtle intricate details, like drapes and cut-outs, to differentiate.
SYNE also takes pride in good fittings and fast custom turn-around. We do a lot of math in measuring—silk is very tricky to cut and sew, so it’s important for my team and me to measure our clients exactly how I want certain style specifications to fall.
MS: What inspired you to use silk in creating your dresses? Why silk?
PB: Silk is versatile—you can wear a silk cami top as a a sleepwear, and also wear it as a casual top. No matter how simple the cut is, there is a luxurious feeling that comes with it.
My very first ready-to-wear collection in SYNE featured a silk piece in red pin stripes. It was the bestseller in the collection, and I had to restock it twice in two weeks. That gave me an idea of a trademark, and from there, I released a second collection that is full of silkwear. People loved it! Since then, I always get tagged as my clients’ go-to silk designer.
MS: What’s a style tip to make silk dresses look flattering on women with fuller figures?
PB: Fuller figures come in different shapes, so there is no standard look that will fit all women. The design will still depend on the client’s body type. We take into consideration the specific areas the client wants to emphasize less, and of course the assets she wants to flaunt. Usually, to create an illusion, I add fabric manipulations like draping, ruching, and pleating in areas the client wants to de-emphasize. For areas she wants to accentuate, there will be less conservative details.
Silk gowns on fuller figures will not look their best if they are too tight or too loose. That’s why we make sure we get the exact measurements right. There should be enough allowance to allow the fabric to fall freely on the body.
Proving #SYNE is not just for the young but also for the young at heart, #jolinamagdangal is sophistication personified in our suede collection. Thank you @chinobrownleeaguilar for the feature. ?? This ensemble is still available at our pop-up store in Mercer Street, Uptown Mall, BGC and of course, our website, synelabel.com, so shop now! ?
MS: How can women wear silk in summer?
PB: We use comfortable premium silk. It doesn’t stick to the skin—even when you sweat! A silk slip dress with a slit paired with sandals, or a silk cami paired with denim shorts are summer OOTD must-haves. Less is more. When you have a nice fabric, especially in the summer season, just wear it as it is.
MS: What designs or cuts would you recommend for professionals?
PB: For professionals, a silk blazer or cover up is a must have! It allows you to maximize day to night outfitting without looking boring. For a more conservative look, silk pieces with sleeves give an instant formal look.
MS: What colors would you recommend for morenas (tan-skinned women)?
PB: I would recommend shades that are not too light and not too dark. Avoid shades of brown to avoid looking flat. Neutral colours or medium shades of pink work best.
MS: What colors would you recommend fair-skinned women?
PB: There is not much restriction—anything that is not too close to the skin color is good. In my experience, jewel tones such as emerald green and ruby look the best.
MS: We heard that SYNE will be launching a silk bridal line soon. What can clients expect from that upcoming collection?
PB: Contrary to the fully beaded ball gowns that are so popular in the bridal industry, our vision for the bridal line is classic and effortless design. Our designs will turn the people’s focus on the bride, and not solely on the dress. We will definitely focus on silk; however, we may also inject a heavier satin finish for more variety. We envision our bridal looks as soft, feminine, and minimal. We want to enhance her assets and add to the bride’s glow, and not entirely take away the attention from her with excessive design details.
MS: What is SYNE’s signature look?
PB: Our signature look is mostly anything that we make in silk. A lot of clients are drawn towards our draped/ cowl neckline designs. It’s really made to fit an individual's chest measurement. Most of the time, we personally drape it on the client’s body so that the fabric will fall right in the middle of the chest. This gives a perfectly draped look to show off a woman’s upper body figure. Aside from that, our signature design is also anything that shows off the luxurious effect of silk! We have A-line skirts in bias cut, and draped low back detail.
Slay your style du jour like @keishaaalao in her #CustomSyne silk coordinates with our signature cowl neck top which drapes perfectly on the body. #SYNE now has a showroom located at Morgan Residences, McKinley Hill, BGC, Taguig City. For custom inquiries and appointments, DM or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. ?
MS: Finally, how much are your rates at SYNE?
PB: Our ready-to-wear line ranges from P1,500 to P2,000, while our luxury wear line at Lanai is at P3,500 to P7,000. For bespoke pieces, tops are from P3,500 to P4,000 and bottoms range from P4,000 to P5,5000. Short dresses and jumpsuits are at P6,000 to P8,000. Finally, gowns have a base rate of P8,500, and can go up depending on how intricate the details are.
It’s exactly one month away from Christmas.??Are your holiday outfits ready yet? If not, stand out in unique pieces from our first ever upscale luxury wear collections like Natalia Zobel, exclusively available at the #SYNExLanai shopping event. Shop today, from 11AM to 8PM until tomorrow, 11AM to 6PM, at @lanai_manila Lanai Manila is located at C-4 The Alley, Karrivin Plaza, 2316 Chino Roces Avenue Extension, Makati City. See you there!
For inquiries, visit synelabel.com.