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PIA Press Release

Bohol weavers innovative on patterns, mixed media

Tagbilaran City (27 May) -- With raw materials in its handicrafts easily obtainable by China where cheap labor can churn products flooding international niche markets, how would Bohol crafts fare?

The Department of Trade and Industry says the keyword is innovation.

And in its recently formalized their collaboration with the European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines' (EECP) Materials Research and Development Program, a Business Accelerator and Materials Innovation (BAMI) program is now being studied with the raffia weavers of Bohol, particularly in Inabanga and Tubigon.

The Program, which kicked off last January is conceptualized by Materials R&D Project Manager Ingrid Haufe and assisted by freelance designer Doro Barandino, has the key personalities immersed in weaving communities to try on new design patterns and media on locally made crafts, a DTI Bohol source revealed.

"They are currently assisting the raffia weavers in coming up with new design patterns and mixed media applications based on the newest trends," the source who wishes to remain unnamed said.

By mixed media applications, the weavers are experimenting recycled materials such as newspapers and old plastic twine mixed together with raffia, she shared with the characteristic excitement of a scientist discovering a new product for the market

Other indigenous materials like buri and abaca are also being experimented, she added.

From these hand-wovens, select exporter companies convert them into actual products, and these companies who will have exclusivity on their chosen materials for at least a year.

Other areas of experimentation include the pattern development, and the most recent patterns developed are set for display at the Materials Library at the Cebu Furniture Industries Foundation (CFIF) building.

The first material output will be showcased in Bohol's raw materials fair in July, while the first products by the companies will be presented in Bijoux Cebu in September and Manila FAME in October. (PIA-Bohol) [top]

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