The Jakarta Post
Ida Royani at the Indonesia Fashion Week 2017 (JP/Jerry Adiguna)
Indonesia’s largest fashion event started with a mission to reinvent traditional fabric while promoting the tourist industry.
Indonesia Fashion Week (IFW) 2017 president Poppy Dharsono said the five-day event, which opened on Wednesday, would showcase the continuous efforts of the Indonesian Fashion Designers and Fashion Entrepreneurs Association (APPMI) to develop and promote the country’s cultural heritage.
“Through this event we are not only trying to familiarize Indonesians with traditional fabrics and crafts from throughout the country, but we hope the Indonesian fashion industry would be more appealing to foreign markets,” said the co-founder of APPMI.
Industry Minister Airlangga Hartanto, Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi, Creative Economy Agency (Bekraf) head Triawan Munaf and Bank Mandiri distribution director Hery Gunardi attended the opening ceremony at the Jakarta Convention Center in Senayan, Central Jakarta, as representatives of the sponsors.
Inspired by the government’s plan to promote 10 tourist destinations, namely Toba Lake, Tanjung Kelayang, Tanjung Lesung, Thousand Islands, Borobudur Temple, the Bromo-Tengger-Semeru Mountains, Mandalika, Labuan Bajo, Wakatobi and Morotai, this year’s IFW focused on the rich variety of woven fabrics, songket and batik, as well as the traditional motifs of embroideries.
(Read also: Indonesia Fashion Week 2017 to showcase local crafts)
May Myat Watso at the Indonesia Fashion Week 2017(JP/Jerry Adiguna)
The venue was also designed in line with the theme “Celebrations of Culture”. The details used on the runways and in the exhibition areas and the selection of models reflected Indonesian cultures. At the center of the exhibition area is a circular stage where APPMI designers placed their works, each using woven fabrics from 22 different regions of East Nusa Tenggara.
Attended by government officials and representatives from foreign embassies, IFW was kicked off with a parade of all 55 designers to showcase their latest works in 20 fashion shows to be held until Sunday.
Australian designer Jamie Sortino also enlivened the opening day by bringing his couture collection, Hymn to the Flora, which was inspired by hydrangea flowers. Dominated by blue and purple, the collection consists of long gowns and wedding dresses with classic silhouettes that look like they popped out of romantic fairy tales.
Nicole Watts, the wife of Australian Ambassador Paul Grigson, said the country also took part in IFW last year and has been involved in many fashion and cultural events, including with three designers of different backgrounds in a Muslim wear festival in Indonesia.
Tyramona at the Indonesia Fashion Week 2017(JP/Jerry Adiguna)
“It refers to the diversity of fashion in Australia and the diversity of fashion here in Indonesia. It’s a bond that we all share,” she said in a press conference.
Bekraf’s director for local marketing, Sappe M. Sirait, underlined that the agency was currently focusing on the development of hijab fashion as part of the strategy in a road map to make Indonesia the capital of Muslim wear by 2025.
“We can see from the start of this event how the modest wear of hijab fashion has been transformed to stylish wear appealing to the masses in the predominantly Muslim population. Fashion is one of the big six sources of the creative economy, besides film, animation, music and crafts, as well as cuisine, and we fully support the development of the industry.”