Veloso: Malu and Letlet

In retrospect of Philippine fashion since the 1930s and 40s, the Veloso name certainly has left a mark among an older generation of designers and likewise a lifetime following of patrons. From names like Malu Antonio-Veloso, to her daughters Letlet and Vicky, the clan had become pioneers in ready-to-wear during the 80s. They also have built careers on bridal wear and bespoke design.

Letlet Veloso, Marina R. Antonio, and Malu Veloso. Photo from house archives.

They were of a family of designers – following the footsteps of the matriarch, Marina R. Antonio, and getting inspired by the built sites of Pablo Sr. himself. The Pasay residence has been their venue for creation and presentation. Hence, the works from thread and fabric worn by clientele around the country and even the world are products from the ancestral home.

Today, Malu and Letlet Veloso continue to run the fashion label.

An ensemble of pastel pink dresses by Malu Veloso at Tesoros. Photo courtesy of Letlet Veloso.
Ingrid Adams models a designed by Malu Veloso. Photo courtesy of Letlet Veloso.

Malu Veloso

The eldest child and only daughter of Pablo Sr. and Marina, Malu took inspiration from her mother’s career growing up. She began with children’s clothes then ventured into christening and Filipiniana as her clientele expanded. Her designs embrace simplicity in shapes and cuts, dainty details in little flowers and beading, and mellow colors like pastels and creams.

While seeing her mother’s works as bold and vivacious takes on the Filipiniana, Malu sees her style as lighthearted, shedded, and let’s the form and color shine without the need of heavy detailing.

A black tube gown with embroidered white flower by-hand detailing by Letlet Veloso at the Yellow Room. Photo by Joshua Barrera.

Letlet Veloso

Being a daughter of Malu, a grandchild of a design couple, and a niece of many designers and architects alike, Letlet entry into fashion was simply by growing up within its scene. She started her career with her sister Vicky who is now an author, culinarian, and chief researcher behind her grandfather’s architectural works. Their first store and atelier was in a Protacio garden home built by Antonio – which was nearby the 2650 Zamora home.

For the designer, her career has long been all about timeless and romance in dress-making. By permanence, she designs to follow trends but maintain a visual identity and provide comfort and confidence among women for all ages and sizes. She places emphasis on embroidery and print – often using floral and insect motifs like the works of Elsa Schiaparelli. Aside from womenswear per se, she further creates jewelry, shawls, and designer masks as well as dabbling in merchandising.

Necklaces, handbags, and shawls for sale at the Pablo S. Antonio Home. Photo by Joshua Barrera.
Models pose in the garden wearing dresses by Letlet Veloso. Photo courtesy of Letlet Veloso.

For the mother and daughter team, the Pablo S. Antonio home has been an ongoing source of their creativity. Drawn from the patterns of flowers blooming and plants stemming from the ground up, their love for the home and garden is woven into clothing.

Their recent notable fashion shows were held at The Podium mall in Mandaluyong in 2008, the Manila Polo Club in 2010, and smaller, intimate salon shows at their very home like Love, Marina in 2017.

In 2019, the Veloso fashion house launched their collaboration with Tesoros Handicrafts Store.

Featured Article

Something Old, Something New. by Joseph L. Garcia, Business World, October 28, 2019.

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