Joanna Ongpin Duarte Speaks At Crate And Barrel With Host
Joanna Ongpin Duarte Speaks at Crate Conversations at Crate and Barrel 

The first Crate Conversations! Joanna Ongpin Duarte shares her knowledge on the real estate industry as well as her various learnings from life and from being a mother. 

I read recently at a magazine that architecture is what makes the shell of a place, but it is interior design that gives it its soul. As a business that works to give soul to tons of homes and offices, Crate and Barrel has been working towards giving hope and the means to provide more meaningful lives to various charities. This is why they started their Crate Gives Back series. Of course, we all need to learn from different people to nourish our souls, eh? This is why Crate Gives Back is often accompanied with Crate Conversations, where they collaborate with the who's who in the upper echelons for value adding life talks. As for customers, on Crate Gives Back days, you can enjoy 20% off on originally priced items.  

This first one was at Crate and Barrel SM AURA last February 28, 2018. I know, I'm so sorry, this is part of Mari's great 2017-2018 backlog crisis, and I know that my backlog crisis already needs its Wikipedia.  

You know you've finally made it to the Crate and Barrel store once this super homey atmosphere rushes to you.
Exterior Shot of Crate and Barrel SM AURA Branch
Crate and Barrel Exterior
To shoppers, aside from following Crate and Barrel's social media accounts, be sure to check out in store if you see any banners like these! Because that means 20% off on full priced items. If you've been eyeing something for your kitchen osr living room, it's best to splurge on a Crate Gives Back day. AND, by doing this, not only do you enjoy the discounts, but you also help Crate and Barrel's chosen charity!

Hanging Poster of Crate Gives Back and Crate Conversations at Crate and Barrel
Crate Conversations Poster at Crate and Barrel
Joanna shares how she appreciates that for the Philippines, as a woman, you can do everything. You can be successful and have a good family life at the same time. There's a big network in Filipino families, and there are always people who are willing to help you raise your children and tend to household work. She understands our generally privileged position as women from other countries usually end up having to give up their careers in order to be a homemaker.
45 degree shot of Joanna Ongpin Duarte speaking to a crowd
Joanna Ongpin Duarte Speaks at Crate Conversations at Crate and Barrel
The guests listen intently as Joanna shared her various experiences. She has worked a lot with real estate, and children's clothes! She shares how she has been using her experiences in one sector to better her work in the other. Having been the chief designer of Big and Small Co., then going to Alphaland, she's been using her expertise in all things pretty with children's clothes and retailing to improve the malling aesthetic of Alphaland malls. When she speaks, she's soft spoken, but you can feel the sincerity and authority in what she is saying. A little Google here and there and she's apparently one of Grace Poe's BFF's, which explains her calm steadfastness.

People seated on round table listening to Joanna Ongpin Duarte talk
The crows listens to Joanna Ongpin Duarte
As for the items! It's always sooo nice to go around the store just to get new ideas and inspiration. I went with my interior designer brother to this one, and one of his design school friends was working here as merchandising designer. These table setups and displays are not mere guesswork, but are thoughtfully crafted by experts.

Crate and Barrel Brown Themed plates and baskets table cover set up
Crate and Barrel Farm Style Table Setting 

In hindsight, there aren't a lot of people who have black bowls! We often associate black with dirt, however, for creamy and light-colored foods, in hindsight, they'd look better on black plates like these...
Crate and Barrel Black Stone Bowls In Zen Themed Table Cover
Crate and Barrel Stoneware Table Setting
Obviously, any SHINee fan would go crazy for these bowls and casserole dishes...
Crate and Barrel Blue Bakeware and White Bowls
Crate and Barrel Pearl Aqua Themed Items

There's also a lot to choose from when it comes to marble and copperware. I love looking at these items, but at home, we already have a lot of marble goin' on so it'd be overkill to get more marble. But seeing this shelf combo together, I now kinda think that we need copperware to add some decorative flair to our kitchen.
Crate and Barrel Copper Bowls and Milk Jar with Marble Jar and Cow Creamer
Crate and Barrel Copperware and Marbleware

For the summertime, Crate and Barrel is a one-stop shop for everything ice cream! There are ice cream makers, bowls, spoons, and all sorts of nifty gadgets. This reminded me a lot of my ice cream making days 6 years ago. I got busy so I stopped. But now, in 2018, I don't see myself going back because our whole family has high cholesterol now.
Crate and Barrel Scoopers, Cups, and Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker
Crate and Barrel Ice Cream Making Supplies

There are also tons of mason jar choices for your overnight oats, jars, and for whatever purpose you wish to use them.
Crate and Barrel Chopping Boards and Ice Trays
Crate and Barrel Mason jars and Supplies

And another thing that fascinates me is a suuuper extensive placemat department! 
Crate and Barrel Placemat Section and Towel Section
Crate and Barrel Placemat Department 

Crate and Barrel will be doing Crate Conversations and Crate Gives Back regularly every month, so be sure to follow them on Facebook to be updated on the next ones! 

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