I chose to name this website M. Klara for 2 reasons. One, M. Klara is a tribute –or rather, anti-tribute– to the Filipino icon Maria Clara, the woman who embodied how the “ideal” Filipino woman is “supposed” to be: “an Oriental decoration,” “her eyes. . . always downcast,” “a pure soul” (1). Though the portrayal transpired from author and Philippine national hero Jose Rizal’s imagination via his novel Nolie me Tangere in 1887, Maria Clara’s legacy has pervaded through the centuries and has solidified stereotypes of Filipinas as demure, submissive and selfless creatures.
Two, M. Klara is a play on the American glossy, “Marie Claire.” As a consumer of fashion and pop culture in general, I’m not a fan of the limited view of the styles (and women) portrayed in these types of American fashion mags and am always looking for something that encompasses a broader, more meaningful perspective on style and self-expression.
In short, M. Klara is about challenging our current standards of beauty and style for women from all walks of life.