Since I spend more than half of my time on or by the beach, having sturdy flip-flops is essential. I’ve been a loyal user of Havaianas since high school (which was 7 years ago WHUT!). My closet has probably held more than 20 pairs, give or take. I’ve lost a few pairs along the way–naiwan sa resort, hiniram ng kaibigan na hindi na binalik, pinamigay kasi bigay ng ex-boyfriend… (Uy. Joke lang yung last.)
When I received an invitation to go to the launch of Make Your Own Havaianas (MYOH) at a time and place I would be in Manila, I rearranged my schedule. I’ve been wanting to go to this annual event for years, but I was always out of town or doing something else. Last night, I finally got to go, and with one of my favorite people in the world, Ma.
Upon entering, we were given our press kits and the You + Havaianas design template. The latter is a nationwide contest inviting people to draw their own designs. The winning one will be part of the next collection.
Since I have no artistic talent whatsoever, I skipped the drawing part and explored the venue. This year’s theme is “imagination,” so the venue had the following details:
A hot air balloon made of Havaianas
And lots of cupcakes by Sonja (which I think were only available during the launch).
The eco geek in me noticed that they used paper straws, wooden forks, and glass cups/bottles for the drinks. I wonder if it was a conscious decision to go for biodegradable/recyclable materials. Nevertheless, I thought that was very cool.
The procedure for making your own Havaianas is to open the guide and 1) check the color of the soles, 2) check the color and style of the strap (metallic, slim, regular), 3) check your size, and 4) add charms (optional). The charms this year were adorable: sun, stars, rocket, owl, hot air balloon, bike, etc.
Then you proceed to the counter where there are assemblers waiting and ready for your design. The Havaianas assemblers Ma and I ended up with were hilarious. The young, gorgeous girls were Richie and Shane. Since Ma and I are pretty talkative, we quickly discovered that they were on their third year of being assemblers and that they were incoming freshmen in De La Salle University. At this point, they started singing the school hymn that Ma and I sang for a good 13 years of our lives as Lasallians!
For my first pair, I chose the Dan Matutina-designed soles, as part of my advocacy to support Filipino designers. This is the first time that Havaianas collaborated with a Filipino designer, so this is a must-have! This design is available only in the MYOH 2013.
For my second pair, I wanted something more basic. I lost my gold pair a few years back. Ma got brown ones, since she lost hers too. (What is BURARA?) We ended up getting matching charms of the astronaut and the rocket!
I strongly recommend going to this event with a friend, so you can keep each other company for what goes next: lining up to pay! I think it took more than 10 minutes. There’s a short hallway leading to the cashiers that has no air-conditioning. Luckily, we ran into Thysz, a good friend, marketing genius, and Deputy Mermaid. We talked and laughed and brainstormed until we got to the cashier.
That’s one of the bonuses of the event — running into familiar faces and long-lost friends! I ran into Monique of TRAVEL, Toff of Chalk, and the forces behind the New Media Factory. Seeing Rissa Artadi always leaves me a little bit starstruck.
After paying, our flip-flops were slipped into these bags, which I absolutely loved. Gave me ideas for future events, hihi. These will be my shoe bags for traveling from now on!
Make Your Own Havaianas runs from Thursday, May 2 at the Rockwell Tent and until May 5, 10 AM onwards. Don’t miss it!