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Nueva Vizcaya ‘parol’ made of discarded carton boxes wins PaSTARan grand prize

27 December 2018

The winning parol with designer Analoren Torio



By Vir B. Lumicao

It took Analoren Yadao Torio one month to brainstorm the design that the United Nueva Vizcayanos submitted as entry in the Consulate’s “PaSTARan 2018” lantern-making competition,  and another month for a dozen group members to execute her concept.

In the end, their patience and attention to detail paid off: in the judging held on Dec. 24 just before the annual Misa de Aguinaldo in Chater Garden, the entry was adjudged the grand champion in the contest and awarded the $5,000 cash prize.

Clinching the first-runner up slot was Samahang Ilokano, which won $3,000 in cash prize; while Marinduque Group was second runner-up with $2,000.
 
Ilokanos celebrate their second prize win in the lantern contest
Torio, from Bayombong, said that she spent a month of sleepless nights thinking of a winning design using materials never before used in the lantern competition.

Then it came to her mind to use carton boxes, the ones that domestic workers lay down on, along pavements and pedestrian walkways in Central on their days off. How to turn the ubiquitous material into an exemplary creation was another thing.




Torio decided to peel off a cardboard box to get its corrugated midrib, then cutting this into thin strips using a photo paper cutter. Next, using a spaghetti roller, she rolled each strip into tiny rings that formed an intricate latticework when glued together.

The group used pistachio shells to build a flower garden in front of the manger where Mary and Joseph were watching over the newborn Jesus, which they then used as the parol’s centerpiece . 



Torio said she and a dozen of her group members put the lantern together in one month, working about 8 hours each Sunday to finish the entry. They spent about $300 for the materials, mainly for the glue.

At home, Torio would spend a few more hours tweaking her work, retouching here and there until she achieved the desired result.



Every detail of the lantern, including its fine lacework, was so intricately done that the masterpiece kept most beholders in awe.

The judges obviously saw the skill, effort and creativity that went into the parol that they unanimously adjudged it as the winner.

The first runner-up entry, submitted by the Samahang Ilokano, was made of about 200 soda cans cut into strips, with the ring pull tabs and star-shaped cutouts of strips combined to cover the rays of the Christmas star.



The can bottoms were strung together to form a broken halo around the star, and in the middle was a Nativity scene.

The designer, Mary Jeane Galicto, said it took four Sundays for six members of the group to build the lantern.    

The group, made up of Ilocanas from the Ilocos provinces, Cagayan, Isabela, Nueva Vizcaya, Nueva Ecija and Pangasinan, said this was the first time they joined the contest.

The second runnerup, an entry of the Marinduque Migrant Workers Association, was made of onion and garlic skins, cut grass stalk, pine cones and ipil-ipil seeds also meticulously glued together to cover a “parol”.

The contest was sponsored by the Consulate and LBC Hong Kong.

















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