bea_valdes.jpgBea Valdes’s fascination with embellishment began early in life. After pursuing studies in design, she began an accessories workshop. What started as an experiment landed her consignments for beaded bags. In 2005, she presented her collection in the US, prompting Vogue to dub her pieces the year’s “must-have evening bags.” Her creations are carried by Barneys, Saks Fifth Avenue and Harvey Nichols. Hollywood wears her creations, and her work continues to be featured in major fashion titles. Bea has worked with the Philippine Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM) as design consultant for accessories. To Bea, each of her creations not only celebrates traditional techniques, but testifies to the process and people behind her enterprise. Her greatest achievement is “being able to work the way we do—slowly, carefully, guided by the fact that we are trying to improve a craft. And being able to work with people I love.”

(First published in Marie Claire, November 2008; Photo by Sara Black)

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