Patty Yap is celebrating her 13th anniversary as a stylist. And here to join her in marking this milestone are her celebrity muses Donnalyn Bartolome, Shanaia Gomez, Zeinab Harake, Alexa Ilacad, Jessy Mendiola, Yassi Pressman, and Vickie Rushton
When it comes to becoming the person that our younger selves always dreamed we’d become, there are two kinds of people. There are those who know what and where they’re destined to be right from the get-go, doing everything they can in their capacity to become that. And then there are some who get to where they are thanks to sheer grit and hard work, a natural curiosity and love for learning, and a good ol’ dash of luck.
For celebrity stylist Patty Yap, who entered the fashion, film, and TV industries as a young stylist during a time when it wasn’t yet the thriving profession we know today, the second scenario may be a bit more familiar. “Nu’ng time na ’yun, hindi ko pa talaga alam kung ano ’yung gusto ko sa life, bagets pa ko nu’n eh,” she recalls. “Hindi ko pa talaga alam kung ano ’yung gusto kong work.”
One of Angelica Panganiban’s long-time friends (the two go way back, having been friends since high school), Patty would accompany the actress to many of her shoots, where Patty would eventually meet Patricia Coronado, who was Angelica’s stylist at the time. This was back in 2009.
(Standing, from left) Zeinab Harake (in Carl Arcusa), Alexa Ilacad (in Jan Garcia), Patty Yap (in Jan Garcia), Vickie Rushton (in Jan Garcia), and Shanaia Gomez (in Jan Garcia); (sitting, from left) Yassi Pressman (in Jan Garcia), Donnalyn Bartolome (in Joseph Palma), and Jessy Mendiola (in Jan Garcia) | All shoes by Jojo Bragais
Patricia’s work was of immediate interest to Patty, especially as someone who was already into fashion and clothes. “Sabi ko, ‘Patricia, ano ’yung work mo?’ Stylist nga daw. Naging interesado ako, so in-interview ko siya: paano magsimula sa ganyan, paano pumasok, magkano ’yung TF (talent fee), magkano ’yung kinikita, so nu’ng nalaman ko ’yung kinikita, parang ‘Ay kabog, parang kaya kong gawin ’yan,’” Patty shares with a laugh.
Patty, a graduate of Mass Communication, initially dreamed of becoming an actress. She tried to pursue that at first, landing small roles in indie films. Though she’s creative at heart, she also did stints in call centers, both here in the Philippines and in Singapore, and even served as Angelica’s executive assistant for a time. At 16, she did stand-up comedy shows at Klownz, a famed comedy bar. But none of them really stuck—it wasn’t until she decided to give fashion styling a try that her career path began to unfold in front of her eyes.
Taking on her first-ever styling job for a Sunday variety program, Patty chose to skip the apprenticeship period that stylists—and other creatives—often start their careers with. She was able to dress Paulo Avelino, her first celebrity client. But this was not without its challenges. As a rookie stylist, with no big clients to her name, her pullout requests to borrow clothes for her clients would often get rejected by designers and brands. Patty also remembered a time when she would commute to shoot locations by herself, carrying all her stuff; one shoot in particular was inside an executive village, and she had no choice but to walk from the entrance to the house because she didn’t have a car then. Whenever she’s reminded of experiences like this, Patty is inspired to keep going, knowing how determined she was to get to where she is now.
Thankfully (and perhaps serendipitously), Patty met actress Kaye Abad through Angelica, who then introduced Patty to her next client: JM de Guzman. From there, she would become unstoppable. After JM came Xian Lim, then Angelica, then Kim Chiu. Patty would eventually go on to dress Kim for some of the actress’ biggest projects and red carpet moments: ABS-CBN Balls, for example (including 2018, with Kim in a custom Michael Cinco), as well as Kim’s 2016 concert at the Kia Theatre, which involved a whopping ten quick changes throughout the show.
With her growing list of clientele, both men and women, Patty also got the opportunity to sign with Viva Artists Agency as one of the stylists on their roster. This is what would lead to her gigs with Yassi Pressman and Donnalyn Bartolome, who are also Viva talents.
But it was with Kim’s trust in her that Patty felt she had finally made it into the industry. “Diyan ko talaga naramdaman na, ‘Oh my god, andito na ’ko,” Patty says.
Patty, who is also an entrepreneur with a food business called PattyLou’s Kitchen, has now been styling for 13 years. And she is celebrating this career anniversary through a Metro.Style special feature. Today, her lineup of muses also include Jessy Mendiola, Alexa Ilacad, Shanaia Gomez, Zeinab Harake, Vickie Rushton, and Maureen Wroblewitz.
As a stylist, Patty always goes for an “effortlessly chic” look, choosing simple pieces that are elegant at the same time, while still being on trend. She also knows that her work doesn’t end with just choosing the clothes and getting her clients and muses dressed—her philosophy as a stylist is one of collaboration, so she prioritizes really getting to know and befriending the celebrities that ask for her services.
“Kinakaibigan ko talaga,” Patty explains. “Inaalam ko kung ano ’yung mga insecurities nila sa katawan nila, ano ’yung mga tatakpan, at tsaka kung ano’ng klaseng personality sila—kung conservative ba—kumbaga, iniintindi ko sila. Ang pagiging stylist, for me, hindi natatapos sa pagsuot ng damit sa kanila. Kailangan din talaga hype girl ka nila, ’yung ibu-boost mo ’yung confidence nila.”
Ensembles by Maison Soriano, shoes by Tutum Shop and Jojo Bragais, and nails by Paint & Style
Patty always takes into consideration what her muses want, while still introducing them to outfits and looks that may be out of their comfort zone. “Trust the process,” Patty says, knowing that she knows her stuff, and that this is something she’s good at.
“Hindi madali ang pagiging stylist,” Patty says candidly when asked what advice she’d give to anyone interested in entering this industry. “Akala nu’ng iba madali lang ’yung pag-style. Mag-pu-pullout ka lang, kakausap ka lang ng designer. Hindi ganun.”
Patty continues, “Hindi ka nag-stylist dahil gusto mong sumikat or dahil sa money… Kasi ’yun ’yung iniisip ng ibang tao, kapag stylist ka, naku, madaming pera ’yan, or easy money ’yan. Hindi ganun, pinaghihirapan din ang lahat ng bagay. Kailangan mo talagang maging strong sa trabaho na ’to, kasi minsan nakakapagod din, lalo na ’pag everyday ’yung work mo. At tsaka kailangan hindi natatapos ’yung pag-aaral mo. Lagi kang nag-aaral tungkol sa styling. Kasi siyempre kailangan mong lume-level up. Ako nga sa edad kong ’to, nag-aaral pa rin ako. Kasi laging nagbabago. Yes, paulit-ulit lang ’yung trends, pero laging may bago ’yan. Aral nang aral, huwag maging kampante.”
Like everyone else in this life with a dream to be—or do—something great, or find out what it is that they love doing the most, Patty set out to find herself, to find where she’d thrive best in, and she found that in styling.
As a plucky young stylist in the entertainment and fashion industry, fast-paced and cutthroat, Patty knows what the hustle is like: making every single brave decision to get to where she is, and never losing her love for learning new things through it all.
“So kung gusto mo ’tong work na ’to,” Patty tells us, “kailangan bukal sa kalooban mo, mahal mo ’yung trabaho mo, para mahalin ka rin ng work mo.”
Check out the gallery below to read about Patty Yap's celebrity muses, and see some of the looks she has put together for them:
By Metro.StyleMay 31 2023, 3:50 AM
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Multi talented artist Yassi Pressman says her fashion style has evolved through the years from being “quite conservative” to “being more edgy and experimental.” The actress, singer, dancer, and host tells Metro.Style, “I’m a very moody dresser. Minsan gusto ko lang ’yung naka-T shirt, naka-jeans, sneakers. Super laid-back. And then sometimes I love dressing up, too, and bringing out my feminine side in heels and dresses.” The big pants that were huge in the early 2000s is a trend that she has taken with her today. Especially with her fitness journey, wherein she said she embraced a curvier body last year, she would always go for matching sweaters and sweatpants which she thinks are “cool-girl chill.”
Recently, though, Yassi launched a dance video called “Yassi On Air,” a Women’s Month tribute and her styling in it shows a lot of femininity and how she embraces the woman she is today. Patty Yap styled her for this project. The two met about five years ago, and they would work with each other for endorsement projects as well as Yassi’s personal shoots. When it comes to styling, Yassi is the type who takes cues from pegs, and she appreciates that Patty is collaborative and delivers on the requirements but with her own twists to the inspiration. Asked what her favorite outfit styled by Patty is, Yassi says, “I did a shoot last year, a photo shoot for my birthday, and I loved that, a silver outfit.” What’s next for Yassi? She’s returning to hosting duties for the second season of “Rolling In It Philippines,” a game show that originated from the UK!
Zeinab Harake is an influencer with more than 4 million followers on Instagram, more than 12 million subscribers on YouTube, and more than 12 million followers on Facebook. Her fans not only love her authenticity and look forward to her good-vibes content, she has become a style inspiration for many of them as well. With her slender figure, Zeinab’s looks range from sexy and feisty to laid-back cool and street-style chic. Her fashion style on most days is cool and casual, which is perfect for her no-fuss personality. She doesn’t like to overthink what she’d wear. But more so now that she’s a mom, Zeinab likes to keep her outfits laid-back and comfy yet still fashionably on point, never letting her mom duties get in the way of looking fabulous.
Zeinab credits stylist Patty Yap for her recent favorite fashion moments. It was in 2020 when the two started working with each other. Zeinab shares, “Preggy na ako nu’n pero gusto niya ako maka-collab sa shoot. And nu’ng ginawa namin ’yun, isa ’yun sa mga best shoots ko kasi talagang iba ’yung effort ng buong team. And hanggang ngayon, nagpatuloy ’yun.” Patty would go on to style Zeinab for her maternity shoot where she donned stunning goddess-like dresses, and her Sagittarius-themed birthday shoot in December last year. “Alam na alam niya ’yung personality mo. Alam niya kung ano ’yung bagay sa’yo… Kada style na nilalapag niya, wala kang regrets. Hindi ka magkakaroon ng any doubts,” Zeinab says of Patty and her aesthetic.
Donnalyn Bartolome is unapologetically herself. And her fun personality and refreshing candidness are elements of what make her a social media goddess, as one of her songs’ title goes. With 6.5 million followers on Instagram, almost 9 million subscribers on YouTube, and 15 million followers on Facebook, Donnalyn is a digital content creator whose goal has always been to make people happy one trending vlog at a time. Apart from being a vlogger, she’s also a singer, and during the lockdowns, she had written several songs. It’s now her goal to release an album this year. She tells Metro.Style, “I’m really excited about that. I think it’s going to make a huge impact ’cause it’s gonna talk about a lot of things that we don’t normally talk about publicly. I just realized my new purpose this year… it’s to make an impact, so I’m looking forward to that.”
On a lighter note, when it comes to fashion, her style formula is simple: “I usually just wear jogging pants and a tank top. I always go for the tank top ’cause it’s hot here in the Philippines, but at the same time I don’t want to show too much skin, so jogging pants; it’s balanced that way.” Donnalyn is into street style, and she loves it whenever stylist Patty Yap gets to mix that with a touch of femininity. She’s been working with Patty for about five years now, and she’s grateful that having her around helped her be more experimental with her wardrobe. A trend she loves and is happy that’s still around is the high-waist pants style, which she finds sexy yet comfortable. On working with Patty, she says, “Patty is collaborative when it comes to dressing me up… Honestly, I dont think I’m good at dressing up that’s why I have Patty in my life, but I think I explore more now.”
In Anthony Ramirez (dress) and Manny Halasan (crown)
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In Anthony Ramirez
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Vickie Rushton is known for her stint in “Pinoy Big Brother: All In” which ended with her as the 4th placer. She would eventually make a name for herself again as a beauty queen when she joined Binibining Pilipinas in 2018, a journey that ended with a 1st Runner-Up victory. She would join the same pageant again the following year, and made it to the Top 15. Although Vickie and Patty Yap knew each other way back in her post-PBB days, it was only when Vickie dabbled in pageantry that they started working with each other. She recalls, “I met Patty in 2012 after I joined PBB pero hindi pa ako ’yung ini-style n’ya nu’n, ’yung friend ko na kasama ko rin sa PBB. Pero nagka-work kami ni Patty sa Bb. Pilipinas na. Siya ang stylist ko for the pageant.”
Vickie admits she’s not the trendy or fashionista type, and that she finds it a bit challenging to dress up well because she’s top heavy. That’s why she appreciates Patty’s expertise in styling, as the latter knows how to dress her body shape and play up her assets in a sophisticated manner. “’Yung style ni Patty is very feminine and dainty, and fit siya sa personality ko,” Vickie shares. Among all the red carpet-worthy looks Patty has put together for her, Vickie’s favorite is a pink ensemble she wore in a shoot as a muse for designer Francis Libiran. Vickie, who last appeared in the 2015 movie “The Breakup Playlist,” hints at wanting to make a movie comeback. But apart from that, she’s also excited to venture in a business soon and continues to use her platform as a Down Syndrome and inclusive education advocate.
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In Francis Libiran
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In Francis Libiran
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In Lulu Minx
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Gaining popularity as the “Rising Darling ng Quezon City” in “Pinoy Big Brother: Kumunity Season 10,” actress, singer, and host Shanaia Gomez is one of the fastest-rising young stars in local showbiz today. A part of Rise Artists Studio’s roster of talents, she’s also currently making waves as a new cast member of the second season of phenomenal coming-of-age drama series “He’s Into Her.” With her promising career, it was inevitable for her to explore a fashion upgrade to go with her brand. To help improve her style, Shanaia was introduced by her management to Patty Yap just last year, and she says it’s been nothing but awesome working with her.
Shanaia shares, “One thing that I love about Ms. Patty’s style is that it’s so in... Gen Z style, and I love that. She knows how to style my body, like which things make my body look good. The outfits make me seem chic, and they’re super fun. I look good without trying hard.” Shanaia’s favorite ensemble that was styled by Patty was her Korean-inspired, schoolgirl-chic look for her fellow ex-PBB housemates KD Estrada and Alexa Ilacad’s digital concert early this year. “I guess, growing up, I thought that whatever I saw on Instagram or Pinterest, that was the style I needed to follow, lalo na when I was a pre-teen. I learned to stop dressing to go with quick trends… I learned to really dress with what works for me and my body.” With Patty’s pieces of advice, Shanaia has also realized that she feels better wearing timeless, classic, and comfortable fashion pieces that are still fun and age-appropriate.
Follow Shanaian on TikTok, Lyka, and Kumu:@Shanaiagomez
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Alexa Ilacad is one of the most sought-after young stars in local showbiz today. She’s an actress, singer, songwriter, vlogger, honor student, and recently, she’s becoming more of a fashionista. “I don’t think my style has changed that much. Ever since, I’m just into shorts and into everything comfortable. But I’ve been into blazers a lot recently. Siguro I’ve turned into a minimalist, more on neutral colors. I try my best to make an effort now, nag-aayos na ako. And I now wear dressy stuff.” A part of the reason for Alexa’s more adventurous take on fashion is her stylist Patty Yaps’ influence on her outfit choices. While they’ve known each other years back, it wasn’t only when Alexa ended her “Pinoy Big Brother: Kumunity Season 10” stint last year that they started working with each other.
“I really like how she dresses her muses... And I felt that she’d be a perfect fit for my body type as well,” Alexa shares. “What I really like about working with Patty is it’s always a collaborative effort… She really finds pieces that will suit me… She really goes out of her way not to make me wear just anything. She really designs it, and she has a vision all the time, and she can execute it really well… It’s so easy to work with Patty.” During Alexa’s virtual concert with her love team partner KD Estrada, she wore a baby blue spaghetti-strapped dress, and it’s by far her favorite outfit styled by Patty. She adds, “Actually, for that whole concert, for my first prod, she had something custom printed. I didn’t know that was possible, but that was so cool.” Alexa and KD are starring in an upcoming series titled “Run to Me,” and we’re excited to see what Alexa’s look will be for all her promo gigs for the show.
Jessy Mendiola and Patty Yap started out as friends, before they established their stylist-client relationship. They met around 2010, and the first time Patty styled Jessy was in 2014 for an “It’s Showtime” guest appearance. “Ang daming bumati sa look ko. Ang daming nag-praise… It just started there, and until now, siya pa rin talaga ang naging stylist ko,” Jessy says. The actress, who’s now dabbling in vlogging, admits she’s not that style savvy, that’s why she’s thankful to have Patty who she would often consult even for what to shop for. Jessy tells Metro.Style, “Her style is, for me, fresh. Always evolving. And very, very flexible si Patty… She has this charm na kahit ayaw mong suotin sa una, ’pag sinabi niyang bagay sa’yo, maniniwala ka na. Tapos ’pag suot mo na, ‘Oo nga no!’”
One thing Patty convinced Jessy to do in terms of fashion was to wear colors. Jessy was so used to wearing dark colors on the red carpet for Star Magic Ball and ABS-CBN Ball until Patty suggested she change up her look and wear a lighter color. Jessy recalls her favorite outfit styled by Patty, “That was for the ABS-CBN Ball in 2018. My gown was designed and made by Patricia Santos. It was a mermaid embellished gown. Para siyang rose gold pink, ombré. Sobrang ganda ng gown… When I wore it, I felt so beautiful… Ever since nu’n, hindi na ako scared to try different colors.” Jessy is also not scared of trying different things career-wise anymore. While she hints on wanting to make a comeback in TV or film this year, after transitioning to married life with Luis Manzano, she also expressed how passionate she is about vlogging these days. She also shared that she will be studying again and tapping into her entrepreneurial self.