The evolution of Patis Tesoro

The woman who brought the terno back is still designing and embroidering. But she spends most of her days communing with nature in her farm in San Pablo, where she gets to continue doing her passion and explore other mediums to express herself, like Instagram.

Patis in her garden. (Photo by Ayi Conde)

For artists, historians, and maybe those who are avid readers of lifestyle magazines (or alumna of Maryknoll College, now Miriam College, back in the ‘90s), Patis Tesoro is a name synonymous with the Filipiniana. And why not? It was her who made the ternoand the use of pineapple fabric relevant once again to Filipino consciousness.

Many know the story of Maria Beatriz Pamintuan-Tesoro, the celebrated designer and artist. She grew up from her humble beginnings as a dressmaker’s daughter in Iloilo, where she developed her love for embroidery while attending an all-girls school. She then moved to Manila and married Tito Tesoro, the theater actor.

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“Tito and I were living in an apartment complex near his family where food was centralized so even if Tito was only earning 500 pesos a month and I was just a housewife, I was still able to pursue my passion,” Patis recalls in an interview with Lifestyle Laguna. “I was lucky.” The secret, she says, is to have a firm grasp of one’s roots — and a whole lot of discipline.

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