EXCLUSIVE: The Curtis-Smiths—Anne and Jasmine Are The Ultimate Style Sisters
On Jasmine: Silk button-down by Joseph at SM Aura (P27,985) and trousers by Walk of Shame at Distinqt in Shangri-La (P23,480) | On Anne: Jumpsuit by Mango at Power Plant Mall (P3,995)
Bound by blood and united by style, Anne and Jasmine Curtis-Smith are local fashion's favorite sisters who are unlike any other.
Anne dreams of Dior, while Jasmine's heart beats for Chanel. Anne has embraced fashion for all its funky possibilities, whereas Jasmine is happiest with dependable pieces. Extraordinary vintage finds get Anne's pulse racing, while practical purchases are right up Jasmine's alley.
At first glimpse, these sisters appear to be a mismatched duo, seemingly at odds when it comes to beauty, fashion, and all things stylish. But it would be wrong to assume this; rather than contradict and counteract, they complement and harmonize, loving the other for everything she is—tastes, quirks, best qualities, and all.
And when it comes to Anne and Jasmine, there really is a lot to love—they're the complete packages, and then some. These women have mastered the art of weaving together beauty and brains, always making sure that a wealth of knowledge and kindness adds depth to a pretty facade.
These sisters who are rightfully leading today's local fashion scene walk us through what it means to be meaningfully stylish, revealing how fashion has played a role in their lives and, ultimately, helped them grow as sisters and role models, too.
In the beginning, there was mom
Corduroy blazer (P6,495) and trousers (P3,995) both by Mango at Power Plant Mall
Like most fashionistas, Anne and Jasmine's love for dressing up was a product of influence. In their case, it was their mom, Carmen, and her closet brimming with in-vogue 80s pieces and the occasional pair of daisy dukes that first piqued their interest—and which they constantly raided.
Yes, Carmen was the kind of mom who dressed up her daughters in matching outfits. Yes, she was kikay and fashion-conscious, and always happy to be in her own skin. Hers was an attitude that fostered individuality in the Curtis-Smith household, and over time, her girls slowly but surely also came into their own, infusing bits and pieces of her preferences (and dad's, too!) in their developing senses of style.
By the time Anne was in her early twenties, she had rows and rows of high heels lined up at home, while an elementary age Jasmine who wasn't quite old enough to experiment with clothes would secretly try them on—then get into trouble by throwing them out the second floor window in an attempt to conceal evidence. ("Anne called me to her room and she asked me what I was doing. I told her that I just wanted to try on heels because I saw how many pairs she had!" Jasmine reminisces).
Come adulthood, Anne found the confidence to move on from the noughties' staple combo of Havaianas and Roxy t-shirts to more sophisticated picks and curated looks like mom's, while Jasmine figured out that she felt most like herself in fuss-free, relaxed outfits, thanks to dad who emphasized that there was nothing wrong with wanting to wear the same dress twice.
Mid-conversation, Jasmine was quick to tease Anne that she's definitely more maarte with dressing up and makeup, often overpacking for trips and events but wearing something totally different anyway from what was planned. But Anne is also quick on her toes; she fires back with hilarious comments about Jasmine being less picky, but making up for it by taking months and months to decide on a new haircut and color and rarely giving borrowed clothes back. The sisters laughed out loud at the truths revealed by the other, looking absolutely cute while they're at it.
A beautiful Sunday and a relaxing & indulgent Mother’s Day to all mamas out there! Whether you are in a marriage or single, female, male, lesbian, gay or any other sexual orientation... being a mama is one crazy ride for all. ???????? It all calls for undivided love, care and attention which I will forever embrace from my mama. She truly can capture the real me. As a mid 20 something in this world I often have self doubts and existential crisis episodes.. but she knows how to reel it all in back to my core. To who I really am, from our mornings in, midnight deliveries, mood swings and all that jazz. There’s no bond that can compare to what I have with you mama @carmcurtissmith! I love you bff ?? Love Jazzybb #HappyMothersDay #OPPOF7
Carmen's daughters might have grown up to have opposing style philosophies, but they're definitely still two sides of the same coin. Besides, opposites attract, and when side by side, Anne and Jasmine are truly a sight to behold.
Much time has passed since their mom's wardrobe was their sole source of inspiration, and now both Anne and Jasmine have found their own style icons to emulate: the bold and brave Anne is in love with the Olsen Twins' boho looks as well as the consistently classy outfits of Olivia Palermo and Olivia Culpo, whereas a comfort-over-trends Jasmine is into Suki Waterhouse, Alexa Chung, Zoe Kravitz, and is on the constant lookout for the newest Filipino designers to follow (Neon Island and Nami jewels from her stylist Cath Sobrevega are her favorites).
Mustard turtleneck top by H&M and denim jeans by Fiorucci at Univers in One Rockwell (P17,198)
Now grown women and successful models and actresses in their own right, they've graced countless magazine covers, posed in many fashion editorials, worked with the country's top stylists and fashion designers, walked many a red carpet, and have been recognized as two of the metro's most stylish women to watch out for.
Yet, at the end of the day, each other's insights about what shoes to pair with which dress, which haircut to try, or what color looks best on them proves to be the most important of all.
Jasmine reveals, "Anne gives me a lot of style tips—what looks good on me, what to wear, what I should try so I can take advantage of my current fit... Sometimes, she also sends me pictures of herself in outfits and I get to pick which she’ll post."
Echoing the same sentiment, Anne adds, "Sometimes [Jasmine] would send me outfits, and ask, 'Ate, what’s bagay? What shoes are bagay with this dress?' Then she’ll keep on changing it, so I would always tell her to [wear] whatever she feels comfortable in."
Their cute back and forth exchanges might not seem out of the ordinary for sisters who grew up together, but in truth, it's a bond that both Anne and Jasmine have only recently discovered.
Photographs by Mark Nicdao | Additional photos from @annecurtissmith and @jascurtissmith
They admit that they weren't always this close; being almost 10 years Jasmine's senior, Anne had to wait a while for her to catch up before she could be more open with her. Just the same, Jasmine had to do some growing up of her own before she learned to fully appreciate Anne's presence in her life, only recently valuing the wisdom of an older sister who's experienced more of life and could pass on valuable lessons.
Reflecting on her current relationship with Jasmine, Anne shares, "She’s at that age when you just let them learn by themselves. I used to be that ate who would always be in your face, but then I learned that there’s this certain age where you just have to wait for them to come to you with their problems, instead of just dictating what [they] should be doing."
They first noticed the (welcome) difference in their relationship at Anne and Erwan Heussaff's wedding held in New Zealand last November. There, Jasmine admired Anne in her favorite outfit of hers to date: her Monique Lhullier wedding gown inspired by details of their mom's. The admiration got this stylish pair talking more and more, and eventually, grew to realize that there was more connecting them than just their names or childhood memories.
Fashion was one of the things that first got them to open up, not just as an ate and a bunso, but as mature women able to see each other eye to eye and live life better with the other right by their side. As it seems, fashion was the catalyst needed for their relationship to go into full bloom.
"It’s been closer. There’s somehow a door that opened that allowed us to talk about certain things that we opted not to [before Anne got married]. We leveled up! It feels weird, but it’s good," Jasmine smiles.
These days, it's not just clothes and makeup that get these two talking; love and relationships, relatable work concerns, trending shows and movies, and everything in-between have become reason for them to enjoy each other’s company.
The substance behind style
Despite the differences that Anne and Jasmine might still have to manage from time to time, there seems to be one thing that they can agree on, no matter what: a woman can't just be beautiful without a good head on her shoulders.
"It’s so important. If you’re maganda, pero wala ka dito..." Jasmine starts, while gesturing to her head.
"I can’t even talk to you. It’s a waste of time. Sayang naman!" she unhesitatingly continues.
As a rising talent carving a name for herself in showbiz, her opinion is drawn from personal experiences of being surrounded by more senior peers who assumed incapability or ignorance on her part, only for them to be proven wrong by her strength of character and vocality. When she says that a pretty face needs to be backed up by an even more impressive mind, she means it, and she's definitely one to walk her talk.
Her passion to prove that looks aren't the be all and end all of a person extends to defending those made to feel unhappy with themselves. She's a staunch supporter of self-love; planting seeds of doubt in a person's heart based on physical qualities is a huge no-no for Jasmine.
She explains, "I’m very vocal about individuality and people having their own thing going on. When people give compliments, I’m very fast to react when it can bring someone down. That’s not what it’s all about... Let’s uplift those who are insecure and make them feel comfortable. Let’s teach them how they can be confident too, so they can exercise that muscle."
On the other hand, Anne's take on the matter focuses on the ability to step back from the daily grind and separate one's professional persona from the personal. She acknowledges that what's seen by the public on TV or on social media might not always be the same once the cameras stop rolling.
She expresses, "You need to have two different worlds for that, or else you’ll go crazy. Especially in a time and age where work is such a big factor, you’ll lose substance—who you truly are as a person—if you don’t make time to have your own little world away from all of that."
It's the same when it comes to not allowing herself to be pressured by others about how to dress to impress; be satisfied being you, regardless of what trends are in or out. Or in Anne's words, perfect "the art of dedma" when someone is out to get your goat for how you look.
For these sisters, confidence is a woman's best accessory and most important piece of apparel; it may be invisible, but it will show, bright and clear, when worn proudly. To them, it's clear that looks and keeping up appearances might be important first lines of defense, but can never be everything; it's the stuff they're made of inside that gives the glow to their smiles, their genuineness that lends the twinkle in their eyes, their desire to be overall good individuals that puts the spring in their steps.
By just being themselves, they embody what a fashion-forward woman really is: she's a leader rather than a follower, a setter rather than an observer, but both in the stylishness of appearances and in the goodness of hearts.
Photography by Mark Nicdao
Creative direction by Chookie Cruz
Sittings editors: Kate Paras-Santiago and Judy Arias
Set Styling by Flourish and Frills
Fashion Styling by Danae Dipon for StyLIZed Studio, assisted by Aia Tabuzo
Makeup by Robbie Piñera (Anne) and John Pagaduan (Jasmine)
Hairstyling by Raymond Santiago (Anne) and Kierlo Velasco (Jasmine)
Video producer: Joan Ko
Videography by Berwin Coroza, assisted by Marnie Giron
Shoot assistant: Cara Tirona
Shot on location at Luxent Hotel, Timog Ave., Quezon City
Special thanks to Betchay Vidanes, Warren Dimen, Francis Simeon, Michelle Nuñez, Greenwich, and The Butterhalf