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Danica Vallesterol

My name is Danica, you can call me Dani for short.  I was born and raised in the Philippines.  In 2008, my family and I relocated to Thailand and it has been my second home for the past 12 years.  I love traveling and have been to 13 countries in Asia and Europe (looking forward to add more countries in my list soon).  Aside from traveling, I enjoy doing arts and craft, cooking, watching movies, food tasting, mix and matching my clothes, shoes and bags. I come from a family of musicians and I do know how to sing, play the guitar and ukulele. I was also trained professionally in dancing (latin, afro, jazz, bollywood, street, hiphop) as well as aerial routine using the bungee cord.

Professionally, I am an experienced Human Resource Specialist, and a Project and Operations Manager.  Recently, I launched a small food business in Bangkok together with my partner and aiming to expand it into catering service.

My passion for crafting began when I was at grade school.  We have an arts and craft subject where we learned how to work on local crafting from weaving, learning how to do crochet, and using recycled materials as an ornament.  I enjoyed doing it at school and my aunt and grandma used to help me out as well in making my arts and craft projects.  It became one of our bonding moments during the weekend.

During my childhood years, my family and I would always make a Christmas Parol (it is a star-shaped Christmas lantern made from Bamboo wood, colorful crepe paper or recycled paper and small colorful light bulbs.  Parol making has been a tradition in every Filipino home and became a traditional contest done by each town, province and city during Christmas season.

In Thailand, I began celebrating Loi Khratong where the art of soap carving originated.  Loi Khratong is a festival celebrated annually throughout the Kingdom of Thailand and in nearby countries with significant southwestern Thai cultures.  It is observed every full moon of the 12th Thai month in the traditional Thai lunar calendar (this year it will be observed on Nov 1).

I want to teach everything I know about arts and craft to others because not everyone is fortunate to travel the world and I do believe that one can experience a different culture not just by visiting the country but from learning about a particular country's craft, its origin and what it signifies.  In addition to that, I get the sense of fulfillment each time I get to share my talent to others and they learn something from me whether it is related to crafting or different forms of art I do such as singing, playing guitar or ukulele and dancing.

I love making art and crafts.  To this day, my favorite materials to work with are abaca fiber which comes from a native plant in the Philippines, soy wax candles, Thai goat's milk soap-base, dried coconut shell, and recycled materials such as old newspaper or magazine, empty glass bottles and jars and old fabrics that I can use as an ornament or a bag.

I was born and raised in the Philippines and though I relocated to Thailand 12 years ago, Philippines has been my home.  My favorite thing about living in the Philippines is that I can get to the mountains or the beach, from my home, the different Fiestas we celebrate every year where we relive our traditions and we bond with family and friends and the month long celebration of Christmas Season which starts from the "ber" months (September-December).

Now that I am living in Thailand, my favorite thing about living here in my second home is that good Thai food comes handy in each corner of the street.  The vibrant and fun atmosphere of "night and weekend markets" as well as the islands and beaches across the country.


Danica Vallesterol
Danica Vallesterol