Stylish Designs Meet Realities of Retail
Apart from high-ranking fashion designers, Jakarta Fashion Week also recognizes emerging local brands and talented young designers.
During the week-long celebration, the event is filled with a batch of young, edgy guests along with notable designers and retailers, all craving fresh approaches to style in the world of fashion design.
On Wednesday, fashion lifestyle magazine Cleo hosted its fourth rendition of the Fashion Awards, a combination of fashion shows and awards that honor creative young designers. The judges look for clothing that finds a balance between fashion design and successful retailing or marketability, and according to Cleo editor in chief Leila Safira, the magazine’s own editorial team picks the winners.
Past winners of Cleo’s Most Talented Young Designer award and Most Innovative Local Brand award have emerged as sustainable designers and labels, including Cotton Ink, Kleting, Nina Nikicio and Danjyo Hiyoji.
These labels update their collections every season, making regular appearances at hip fashion events and in glossy teen magazines. With the help of a few concept stores in Jakarta, Bandung and Bali, these brands have slowly attracted a niche fashion market of young Indonesians in their 20s, shoppers who once preferred buying from foreign fashion brands.
This year, Cleo’s award for Most Talented Young Designer went to Sisca Tjong, a graduate of Jakarta’s Esmod International Fashion University Group. Sisca showed her talent through a collection of frothy, fairy-tale attire with romantic lines, graceful chiffon fabrics, and shades of broken whites and pale pinks. She used frill as an elegant detail in sleeveless shirts and asymmetrical dresses with tender flower patterns.
Sisca faced tough competition from designer Felicia Budi, who showcased practical ready-to-wear pieces with knots, tie-dye and bead detailing across the chest, wrist and waist. Designer Yasmina Yessy, who presented a rainbow chrome dress that boarded on the surreal, was also nominated for the Most Talented Young Designer award.
Though Yasmina didn’t take that award, she did have success in another category, Most Promising Accessories Brand, which she won with her jewelry line Ghost. The line, which she runs with her partner Agra Satria, favors an edgy style with materials from acrylics to gemstones — the pair refuses to make kitschy jewelry that is overly sweet or cute.
In Ghost’s award-winning collection “Foreign Skies,” the jewelry designs are inspired from urban architecture; the collection features white and red pearls paired with bronze skulls and Garuda-shaped pendants. The Ghost showcase stole the first part of the show.
Also presented was the Mono jewelry line from designers Gendis Primon and Budi Nugroho, featuring glossy origami-like designs shaped like animals, including reindeer head pieces and giraffe necklaces. Jewelry from the line Antyk Butyk by Windy Dana displayed colorful and ethnic-themed accessories in gold, fuchsia, yellow and turquoise.
The award for Most Innovative Local Brand went to Faustine Arthaputri, who heads the brand Milcah. Faustine, or Otin, was previously a fashion stylist for Dewi magazine, and her clients today include several former colleagues, fashion writers and editors.
Both practical and feminine, Otin’s designs for Milcah are slightly understated but with a stylish twist, such as her two-collared shirt; her sheer, off-the-shoulder kaftan dresses; and her asymmetrical skirts. The kaftan is one of Milcah’s best-selling items, Otin said. Her collection revolves around pastel color palettes as seen on her four-tone maxi dress in purple, gray, blue and yellow.
Otin was selected over Mellyun Xing, whose brand Monday to Sunday includes a collection of checkered prints in jersey and cotton fabrics for men’s and women’s wear.
In the same category, Danya Purba showed the strength of simplicity through her brand Satcas, adapting the concept of playful outdoor adventure with her two-tone jumpsuit, khaki trousers and a long-sleeve blue shirt with brown elbow patches.
Former award-winners also returned to the Fashion Awards this year, with an opening presentation by Dina Vahada, who won the Most Talented Young Designer award last year, and by Cotton Ink, who claimed the Most Innovative Local Brand category last year.
Dina’s outfits are at once youthful and mature — tending toward gray and black palettes, they mix suede jackets with pleated high-waisted pants in leopard print. Cotton Ink also stayed true to its trademark of casual clothes with a twist, featuring an earthy color palette of black, gray, khaki, brown and navy. Cotton adapted the palazzo pants and sheer shirt trends, but one of its key pieces was the beige maxi skirt with a gold zipper on the back.
This year’s Cleo Fashion Awards also featured 20 prizes for major brands including Levi’s, Steve Madden, Bebe and Gap, which were chosen based on readers’ and editors’ choices.