January 24, 2022
MANILA – Despite the erratic delays in production due to the pandemic, one innovative entrepreneur pushed on with her dream: to produce vegan shoes to empower the ever-evolving Filipina.
Kat Padilla, 24, established Sebastian & Savannah (@sebastianandsavannah on Instagram) as “a conscious label as passionate about reshaping modern fashion as it is about sustainability and local production.”
With her emerging brand, Padilla aims to provide stylish footwear at an affordable price point for the everyday woman’s wardrobe, all while utilizing vegan leather, a plant-based cruelty-free sustainable material that mimics genuine leather.
It was not a smooth journey, however. The Slim’s Fashion and Arts School alumna and Fashion Design and Merchandising major at De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde encountered various production difficulties, owing to the lockdowns.
But she quickly adapted. She learned to switch gears at the snap of a finger. “Always observe what works for you, to easily swerve to the right direction. Time and money are really important these days.”
Today, the brand carries several styles, such as The Pilot, The Krokodille, The Ofélia, The Ingrid, and a selection of heels.
Coming from a creative and entrepreneurial household, Padilla’s biggest inspiration is her family, who provided unconditional support.
“Another thing that drives me is my passion and love for my craft. I get so excited when my designs come to life. It’s fulfilling feeling to see your work out in the world.”
She enjoys the development process the most. “It takes so long to get it right—from designing, sampling to manufacturing—and it’s so gratifying when we really nail a project.”
Her advice to aspiring designers: “Create something different. You won’t stand out if you offer the same as everyone else. And you can’t just focus on one aspect of the business; you need to be knowledgeable in all. Build connections with inspiring people and be an inspiration yourself.”