Mayari was the daughter of Bathala, the king of the gods, born to a mortal woman in Tagalog mythology.
In Gabbie Sarenas’ accessories line, Mayari is the occasion wear designer’s facemask line, fittingly named after the goddess of combat and war (as we fight against the invisible coronavirus), revolution (overcoming social injustice), hunting (as we pick up our food and grocery deliveries to restock our pantries), weaponry and strength (which we derive from the wearable protection), as well as beauty. Mayari is the most beautiful deity in Bathala’s court.
Beautiful is what Gabbie’s reusable, non-medical grade masks definitely are. First released in July in piña shifu, the material made of piña with abaca served as a natural canvas for playful hand embroidery, her brand’s savior faire, meticulously completed by her embroiderers for one whole day before it is sewn into a mask by her seamstress.
“I don’t have a green thumb but these hand-embroidered delicates are the closest I can be, for now,” she has told YStyle. The embroidery patterns started out as a quarantine project called Retreat Petites, a series documenting the quarantine plants and florals of her friends while providing livelihood for her embroiderers while the industry was in limbo.
Brides have worn her Mayari masks to their pandemic weddings. There’s no stopping you from pairing piña with your protective outerwear, but for practical everyday wear, Gabbie releases a casual special edition of the Mayari, superimposing masks on the humble and nostalgic printed cotton panyo, “like those dainty panyos we had back in kinder,” she describes.
“This one is nice for errands and more color,” she notes.
Like the first release, every mask is one-of-a-kind. “It’s hard to make editions of this since one side is different from another. It’s the start of a new technique for us,” Gabbie clarifies.
Apart from the thoughtful embroidery, each mask has interchangeable secures, with options for ear loops or ribbon ties, making it easier to be less disheveled in our masks. Protected yet beautiful is the look.
Shop Gabbie Sarenas at www.gabbiesarenas.com. Photos from Gabbie Sarenas