Trip Report of Visit to the Materials Innovation Center (MATIC) in Cebu
December 2, 2016

Travellers: Celia B. Elumba/Director
Corazon I. Tapulgo, Chief FAD

Attendees to the meeting at MATIC:

Rosemel Calderon, Executive Director
Patricia Kyle Mendoza, ECCP Project Officer
Francis Dravigny, Interlace
Tristan Abando, PSTD, Cebu/Region VII

Background: The visit to MATIC was prompted by the invitation of ED Rosemel Calderon who, in September 2016, visited the PTRI with Patricia Mendoza in furtherance of a DOST VII - funded project, De­ Tech (Design and Technology) Fusion, one of the components of which involves the use of natural dye in fabrics.

In January 2016, on invitation through the Regional Office, Rosemel and Patricia attended the TELA Nation stakeholders' conference. Recent visits to MATIC of Secretary Fortunato Dela Pena and Assistant Secretary Emmanuel Galvez catalyzed the PTRI visit which included the following Trip Objectives:
1. Explore collaboration possibilities with MATIC and communities they are engaged in for the Bamboo project, and
2. Learn from MATIC and explore how PTRI may obtain assistance in the development of PTRl's own textile gallery at the PTRI
3. Visit with Francis Dravigny, a MATIC and (indirectly) a PTRI collaborator
We were kindly met by PSTD Tristan Abando and our thanks to Dir. Ed Paradela for kindly facilitating our transport from the airport to the meeting venues.

The Materials Innovation Center or MATIC started as a research and development collaboration between DOST Region 7, DTI and the European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (ECCP) in response to industry needs for material developments for the furniture export sector in the 1990s. Workshops were organized tapping international resource persons towards the creation of new designs. MATIC was created under the ECCP's Materials R+D program and launched in 2014 on the basis of the compelling need for new materials not just for the furniture sector but also for the jewelry, GOH or lifestyle markets. The center has since become not just a repository of material swatches but had also become a venue for creative engagements, a link for designers,


technologists , product developers and students.
Various product and design clinics have been organized in coordination with member companies of the ECCP. Housed in the former DOST compound, the partnership and thrust towards innovations aided, if not fueled by science and technology, is evident.
The three main features, area-wise, of MATIC are: The App Zone which houses a library of finished and semi-processed material swatches, design books and other reference materials;
Dashboard - show window to highlight technological innovations, material applications to end product; Chatroom - venue for meetings, networking and linkages.


MATIC has been working with the Tubigon Loom weavers in Bohol and its transformation into a craft village. Francis Dravigny was engaged to help the community with product design and development. Today, Tubigon already exports much of their produce with Francis Dravigny as a primary buyer through his company, Interlace. The developments have continued to be beset by supply bottlenecks. Discussions quickly went to the needs of the community which were the same as the small tools which PTRI tried to address in its earlier run of the "Tara Na, TELA Na" Inventions contest - from the knotter to the ikat tie-dyer to the smoothener/polisher, Francis Dravigny, along with the communities he works with, had the same need for them.

Before proceeding to Interlace, the main subject was on the bamboo project which ECCP is working on in Bantayan Island. DCBE provided a background of the bamboo project which started with the characterization of four local species. The group was very much interested in the clustered/localized approach the Institute is pursuing towards textile materials development. While we are still in the early stages, the group  matic3 

requested to have Bantayan Island earmarked for the purpose up to the micro spinning. Towards this end, PTRI will confirm the specie after which Matic will conduct an inventory of the species of bamboo which may be found in the island. At the conclusion of year two of the project, PTRI will request the help of PCAARD towards the mapping, propagation and cultural management of the particular bamboo to ensure sustainability of supply. 

Additionally, PTRI is interested to tap MATIC's resources for lectures or workshops in sustainability as well as creative approaches to promotion of the lnstitute's TELA advocacy and relaunch of the small equipment inventions contest nationwide and make this more appealing and interesting to a wider audience.

Francis Dravigny was, in fact, awaited our arrival at MATIC. We had met with Francis earlier during a visit he and Jeanne Goulbourn paid to then Secretary, Mario G. Montejo. He is a collaborator of Jeanne Goulbourn and Bea Roxas, CEO of Roxas Foundation with whom PTRI has a joint collaboration on the development of the sugar can bagasse as a new yarn material for home furnishings. The development generated excitement with the first handloom woven materials by Interlace. This, however, exhibited very high shrinkage, which while it presented yet another new possibility, would not work well for the table top market who had placed the order for them. This has to be a particular area that PTRI must continue to address.


The sugar cane bagasse on the loom; with all the protusions showing and the shrunken piece after water.


The quality and craftsmanship of the product of Interlace were impressive and were really world­ class. We will aspire to make use of some of lnterlace 's materials for use in PTRI to attract and inspire. 

Prior to the Interlace visit, Rosemel brought us to a pop up exhibit at the exhibit space of another of Cebu's furniture design-collaborator , Debbie Palao of Holicow. Apparel designer Raphaelle Camcam exhibited products of natural materials woven by llocos lnabel weavers among others alongside Christina Gaston's jewelry prices from Hacienda Crafts of Negros Occidental.

Action Plans: 1. Keep in touch with EECP MATIC for:
a. Bantayan Bamboo Craft Village Project; PTRI to advise them of variant for inventory purposes and inclusion in follow through proposal for the bamboo materials development; RDD
b. Collaboration in workshops and seminars around sustainability , on inventions contest and advocacy work for TELA; TIPS
2. Consider adoption of MATIC approach with the appzone, chatroom and showcase/dashboard - conceptually, they are all applicable for our purposes with the textile gallery; TIPS/FAD
3. Resolve the material concerns - shrinkage and tactile/roughness of the sugar cane bagasse development with Roxas Foundation with immediacy as production has been adversely affected and orders have been hampered. RDD/TSD

Submitted By:

Celia B. Elumba/Director