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ArteFino Festival 2022: A Celebration of Culture, Craft, Community, and Conscious Lifestyles

ArteFino has always been more than just a selling event. It is a movement that inspires an elevated yet responsible lifestyle. It is a shared experience that binds like-minded brands, makers, and consumers. ArteFino is also a community that honors craft, culture, and conscious living. Since its first artisanal trade fair in 2017, founders Susie Quiros, Marimel Francisco, Mita Rufino, Maritess Pineda, and Cedie Lopez-Vargas, have always believed in creating an inclusive platform for local brands to tell their inspiring stories.  

150+ Brands in 5 Weeks

Cedie Vagas and Marimel Francisco reminisce, “Since we launched in 2017, ArteFino has taken on a life of its own.” Throughout the years, they’ve launched countless local labels and designers. “We’ve worked with many emerging brands and designers, all of whom have grown with us. We’ve followed their journeys and evolved with them,” shares Cedie. Even then, Marimel maintains that, “We are constantly on the lookout for new talents to showcase.”

For this year’s ArteFino Festival, more than 150 brands will be showcased in a span of five weeks. Each week will introduce a new roster of labels across the categories of fashion, accessories, fine jewelry, home, and children’s wear. A special section called Barracks will also be set up as a curated space for men to lounge, shop, and sip on local artisanal brews. Marimel shares, “We wanted to cater to an underserved mens market.” Cedie adds, “Barracks has been around since 2018 and was created to invite men to be part of this movement. This year, the theme for Barracks will be easy living.”

The Festival will also introduce 44 new designers and brands, each one hand picked by the ladies behind ARTEFINO. Brand narratives, purpose, and links to community, are considerations that factor into the selection of vendors. Cedie elaborates, “We want our vendors to succeed and we want them to be prepared for a global market. This is why apart from the product, we also look into their purpose, vision.” 

Marimel continues, “Almost 40% of our vendors this year are new. It speaks of the emergence of social enterprises and a deeper understanding of what sustainable living is all about. This year’s roster will show the many layers of responsible retailing that include going hyperlocal and employing fair trade practices.” 

The ground floor of the Powerplant Mall was deemed the ideal venue for a gathering of this scale. The team explains, “We wanted to create an experience this year that would celebrate the community–its spirit of sharing and collaboration.” Among organizers, vendors, patrons, buyers, ArteFino has always been an exercise in building bonds and forging partnerships. The expanded iteration of this year’s artisanal fair reflects this mindset for community and inclusivity. “The movement has always been inclusive,” says Marimel. “Through our diverse range of brands and products, everyone is represented.” 

Let’s Meet at the Festival

After two years of navigating the new normal, and pivoting through unprecedented times, the was no better way to reunite with the  community than within a festival-like setting. The team drew from the challenges, milestones, and breakthroughs of the past to come up with a five-week long celebration. “We wanted to bring this bond together in a shared space where we could all shop, learn, and connect,” explains Cedie. 

The shared feeling of wanting to reconnect helped bring together elements that would define this year’s festival. “We wanted to capture the youthful energy that comes to life when you connect again with like-minded individuals,” says the team. Apart from the well-curated range of brands, designers and products, ARTEFINO Festival will also set the stage for creative engagement and exchange. 

More Reasons To Keep Coming Back 

Interactive programs at the ARTEFINO Festival were intended to amplify the movement’s call to “renew, repurpose, and recycle.” The Maker’s Challenge, for instance, focuses on the innovative ways by which creators can upcycle everyday materials otherwise discarded. “It is an open call for anyone who wishes to create–vendors and non-vendors alike,” clarified the organizers. 

The ARTEFINO Festival will also set the stage for pocket events and workshops. These open more doors and avenues for both creators and consumers to connect. Five senses are awakened through other festival highlights that round up the ArteFino experience. Eats by Artefino, a collaborative effort with The Seven Pantry, will whet appetites with the best local flavors. A dedicated soundtrack curated by Tarsier Records will bring a piece of the ArteFino festival to everyone’s personal playlist.

More activities at the ARTEFINO Festival will be unveiled in the coming days. Cedie and Marimel conclude, “As in the past, we always aim to bring something new to the community. This being that year that we step out again, we hope to create an experience where everyone can immerse with the community.”