A Beautiful Merge: Bridging Old Hollywood Flair with Modern Filipina Edge by Chris Nick


Powerful, independent, sleek, and wearable. These are some of the main themes at the core of this fashion designer’s classy label as he sets out to change the look of fashion in the Philippines.

One of the names that have quickly sealed a rightful place in the competitive world of Philippine fashion is Chris Nick Delos Reyes, more known as Chris Nick, a young designer who, from the get-go, completely knows what he wants and who he wants it for.

Forging an inimitable brand to cater to a demographic of the redefined modern Filipina, the “Chris Nick look” speaks of a refined style that merges masculine and feminine elements with the beautiful melding of both old and new—an ensemble generally decked out in black or white with structured silhouettes fit for the most exclusive parties of high society.

Photographed by Advan Ramirez

Photographed by Advan Ramirez

As an Export Management graduate, he had his eyes set on a different branch of fashion, but life had a different path laid out for him. “I’ve always known I would be in fashion, but not necessarily fashion design. But it’s always been a passion. Ever since I was young, it’s really something I dreamt of doing. [It] fascinated me. But I never really thought it would be my main career,” delos Reyes shared with Rank Magazine.

A custom white tuxedo for former Miss Universe queen Catriona Gray’s homecoming back in 2018 catapulted the brand, he recalled, with no inclination nor big ambition of launching a label at the time. The look would then become so iconic that it granted him the attention of the country’s tight-knit fashion community, and the pieces that followed would not just define but cement a distinct aesthetic to the world—from Manila to New York City.

Photographed by Advan Ramirez

Photographed by Advan Ramirez

“I had no idea people would take notice of me very quickly. The women I’ve dressed have undoubtedly helped me a lot in building the brand, mainly because [they] really embody what I envision the ‘Chris Nick woman’ to be.”

And who is the Chris Nick woman, exactly? She’s independent, very opinionated, and has a strong personality. The fashion tour de force has his eyes set on dressing Filipino women who embody this personality, and provide them with beautiful creations designed to make them feel powerful and confident. The pioneers of a new era of fashion across the country.

Photographed by Advan Ramirez

Photographed by Advan Ramirez

Among the roster of empowered women that the brand has dressed, who have ultimately personified this look and his label are Nikki Huang, Heart Evangelista, Bea Alonzo, and Marie Lozano, to name a few. For men, he takes pride in dressing the likes of Tim Yap, who are unafraid to push the boundaries of norms when it comes to “masculine” fashion.

“Since it was something I loved doing, I never really thought of it as difficult. I’ve always known and I’ve always had a grasp on my aesthetic so it was never really hard for me to look for my identity as a designer. It just keeps evolving, but you have a firm hold on that foundation by which you stand on. And I think that if it’s something you really like doing, it should come naturally.”

With this brand and creative ethos, he notes the importance of staying true to one’s brand as a designer, especially as each client piece is a reflection of your own aesthetic and style. Working closely with his clientele for custom pieces, calls for a creative dynamic and a healthy relationship with the client, without compromising his brand identity. And so much of the Chris Nick look harks back to old Hollywood films, a nod to Paris, and the luxurious and glamorous looks of the past.

Photographed by Advan Ramirez

Photographed by Advan Ramirez

In fact, his very first collection for the Panasonic Manila Fashion Festival in 2018 was inspired by Studio 54, an iconic nightclub from the ’70s where old Hollywood glam was in full swing. “[It was] just for me to try fashion out. I had no studio, I didn’t have that much staff. It was all just me, and I wanted to try it out,” he shares.

These days, as quarantine in the Philippines continues, he opens up about how everything was affecting his own mental health, and in effect, his work. But, he shares that it is also a time where he allows himself to indulge in his favorite films, and books, which ultimately refuels his passion to create more: “My brand is actually sort of my lifestyle, so it’s not something that comes out of nowhere. It all merges to one.”

Currently, he just dropped a new collection for 2021, inspired by the 1920s and the unexpected parallels between these decades and how this translates to our ever-evolving look of the modern Filipina.

Portrait by Advan Ramirez
Additional text by Leo Balante

Keep Chris Nick’s stunning designs in your radar. Follow him on https://www.instagram.com/_chrisnick/ and http://chris-nick.com/.

Produced and Interviewed by Leo Balante

Photography by Advan Ramirez

Makeup by Elle Lubigan

Model: Elle at Dream Talent Management

Location Partner: DHQ Studio at THE PARC