The humble rattan plant has long been used as a material for furniture, basket, and accessory making in the country. Its stems and lightweight core can be treated like wood for furnishings, while its skin and inner layers can be split into strands for weaving.

One of the most popular types of rattan weaves is solihiya. You can’t miss its distinctive pattern, which is composed of a repetitive grid of sunburst weaves with a hole in the middle. The holes allow air to flow through, which is essential in our tropical climate.

Solihiya first became popular in the 19th century, when it was woven to form an airy, flexible, but durable panel. These panels were used as seating and backrests for the intricately carved wooden loveseats from Bulacan, the butaca (a long-armed wood lounge chair), and the simple papag (a wooden daybed without a mattress).

This weave has come a long way since its formal and ornate Spanish-colonial days. With Manila FAME’s theme of “Heritage Reimagined,” the solihiya pattern has been reinvented through new forms, applications, and materials by designers and manufacturers for a fresh, 21st century look.

A cool color for an old weave

South Sea Veneer is known for their solihiya insets, but in a natural finish.
Their pendant lamp that was launched in April 2019 features the classic weave, but in youthful, pastel blue tint.

Breezy bags

The solihiya seats of retro 1980s wooden chairs ae the inspiration for the light and easy style of the bleached white
Theo bag and leather bag with solihiya insets by Island Girl PH.

Light geometry

Pampanga-based Albero reissues traditional Filipino patterns and methods into accessories with streamlined shapes,
like these pendant lamps which have a tropical vibe but in a modern form.

Minimalist storage

This cabinet of shelves, also by Albero, was designed for condo living.
Instead of the expected double cabinet doors, a sliding single panel of solihiya was added for a
minimalist touch.


For tropical doggos

This whimsical Irooo dog house designed by artist Patty Eustaquio for E. Murio is the most stylish doggie hideaway ever.
Irooo was featured in the September 2019 edition of Maison et Objet in Paris.



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