Roche Bobois x Piopio Founder Paloma Urquijo-Zobel: An Iconic Mah Jong Sofa In Inabel
During a trip to Ilocos, Paloma Urquijo-Zobel first laid eyes on an inabel, a colorful and printed handwoven textile that is distinct to this region. Discovering this traditional Filipino textile arts further inspired Paloma to promote local craftsmanship and celebrate our country's rich culture.
Her chic and clever idea of making inabel relatable to the society today is by launching a brand called Piopio that's fun, youthful, dynamic, and most importantly, bursting with Pinoy pride. The traditional "funky Filipino" woven fabrics are now utilized in modern silhouettes and styles that appeal to just about anyone who appreciates unique and well crafted everyday wear.
It is Paloma's dream to keep the weaving tradition alive, proving through Piopio that there are plenty of ways to reimagine, reinterpret, and repurpose these fabrics to suit more contemporary tastes and lifestyles.
"Honestly, as long as I live, having inspired more people to keep on weaving, that for me, would be a dream come true," Paloma tells Metro.Style.
At the Roche Bobois’ exhibit Interactions where 10 artists have collaborated to reimagine the iconic Mah Jong chair. Here with former Metro Society cover girl Paloma Urquijo-Zobel and her Mah Jong chair. . . . #rochebobois @rochebobois @rocheboboisph @p.u.z #palomazobel #mahjongchair
Tapped by French furniture brand Roche Bobois to do her own take on their iconic Mah Jong Sofa, Paloma's design direction for this collaboration naturally revolves around inabel, which is the core of her brand's design DNA.
Initially, Paloma and her team planned on just using one type of inabel to dress up the chair with. But then, true to Piopio's vibrant and bold aesthetic, they decided on working wth their master weaver named Cora, to mix and match various inabels, for a more fun and brighter approach.
Photo from Metro Society
Paloma shared, "We said, 'Let’s have a bit of fun. Let’s make a neon pink, neon green—stay true to the old techniques, the old designs but just give it a kind of oomph color-wise... Let’s just go for it and just make it fun and bright.'" The final product is absolutely a visual treat, as it combines different prints and patterns in an artistic whole, notably with edges in bright pink fabric made from retaso.
Watch Paloma share more about this amazing collaboration below:
Produced by Marie Francia
Videography by Paperlens
Video editing by Jason Roque