Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Balara San Antonio Fiesta 2014: Dressing the Chapel Images


June 2014, counting down till the Feast Day of St. Anthony; another opportunity for my family to give thanks and to celebrate the life of this much beloved saint. Balara is a small community, and families come together once a year (both current and past residents) to pay homage to St. Anthony who for more than 50 years has watched over us. My family since the time of my Lola Choleng has been dressing the image and now, my mom and I are continuing the tradition. Every year, St. Anthony must have something new to wear which is how it has always been. This is our contribution to the fiesta while other families take charge on floral decorations for the church and for the carroza's, for the fireworks, for the fiesta mass and for the overall management of the event (the fiesta committee.)

Dressing San Antonio

This year, I decided to move away from the traditional brown velvet material used for St. Anthony's Franciscan vestment. I have seen other images of St. Anthony in gold and I have long since wanted to copy that for our image of St. Anthony. However, I am also very much cautious since I am not sure how the devotees of Balara will receive this thus I decided to make it "two-toned". The front and back part of the vestment is in traditional brown (this time I used Shantung fabric) and the sides are of muted gold. My initial design is more modern, a rectangle within a rectangle as I imagined it but looking at the fabrics I have bought, I thought otherwise.


For the Santo Nino image St. Anthony is carrying, I decided to add a jacket, similar to an English prince of the 17th to 18th century. No particular reason, I just thought it would look nice.

Close-up of the dress of the Santo Nino. Initially I wanted to add a red ribbon around the waist but I changed my mind when we have dressed the image. My Tita (Gina) actually suggested not to add it anymore because the color sticks out, in short it's too much (in contrast to my actual intention why I want to add it, the vestment is predominantly brown and gold so I am adding a touch of red to break the monotony...anyway it did not push through)...

San Antonio unofficial portrait shot... = )

New clothes for San Antonio and the child Jesus for Fiesta 2014

Dressing the other images of Balara's Chapel

As time passed, families of Balara come and go...some choose to return (even at least during fiesta's), some completely move on. This includes families who once dressed the images of the Holy Family. In the spirit of the Fiesta I decided to intervene...partially though...

The Immaculate Conception, a favorite Marian image of mine

L: San Antonio back at his altar; R: Sto. Nino

St. Joseph and Mama Mary

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