5 Mindanaoan Fashion MSMEs Who Stood Out at the Mindanao Trade Fair Expo 2023

5 Mindanaoan Fashion MSMEs Who Stood Out at the Mindanao Trade Fair Expo 2023

g.spot goes to this year's Mindanao Trade Fair Expo to celebrate local craftsmanship and support local businesses.

August might be the most vibrant month in Davao as it marks the Kadayawan Festival. Hailed as the “King of Festivals,” Kadayawan is a celebration of life and thanksgiving for the bountiful harvest, rich culture, and harmonious living amongst the diverse groups in Davao.

But aside from being a celebration of rich culture, this season is also the perfect time to support local businesses and celebrate local craftsmanship, especially with the continuous post-pandemic recovery of the business sector. As part of the week-long festivities, the Mindanao Trade Fair Expo 2023 was organized at the Abreeza Ayala Malls wherein over 150 exhibitors lovingly entertained customers (I was one of them!).

Here are some local MSMEs I’ve had the chance to visit (and even buy from) at MTE 2023:

Gayak PH (Davao City)

Literally translating to “ornament” in English, Gayak’s accessories are indeed the absolute fashion regalia. These freshwater pearls and rare semi-precious stones make any outfit stand out without making it look overpowering. 

Follow Gayak on Instagram

Toping Zamora (Davao City)

Toping Zamora’s woven pieces of clothing pay homage to the handcrafted textile industry. He is a homegrown artisanal fashion designer and his creations have since been making headlines in the local fashion scene. 

Follow Toping Zamora on Facebook and Instagram

Hininang Tu (Cabadbaran City, Agusan del Norte)

These authentic handmade products were intricately made by Manobo artisans from Agusan del Norte. What sets Hininang Tu’s apart is the use of block stitching embroidery called ‘Suyam’ in its apparel. 

Follow Hininang Tu on Facebook

Sulu Handicrafts (Sulu)

Sulu Handicrafts not only has a collection of textiles, but also offers a beautiful variety of bags, clothing (including hoodies), and hats inspired by the Tausug arts.

Follow Sulu Handicrafts on Facebook

Paper Plane Creations (Cagayan de Oro)

If you’re on a quest to add dainty handmade jewelry to your collection of accessories, Cagayan de Oro-based Paper Plane Creations might be the one you’re looking for. They offer a wide range of earrings, necklaces, bracelets, and rings made from clay and stainless steel. 

The Mindanao Trade Fair Expo 2023 was an avenue to embrace the spirit of Kadayawan by championing local businesses. With these kinds of events launched more in the near future, we can certainly build a stronger community of support for the arts and small businesses in the hopes of uplifting our local economy.