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Celebrating Culture Then and Now -AFDS Designers shine in Indonesia

On November 16th-18th, ASEAN Fashion Designers Showcase was invited to showcase in Spotlight Indonesia, Jakarta, Indonesia. Spotlight Indonesia is a fashion event that consistently celebrates cultural diversity, literature and the stories behind them, while still carrying a spirit of novelty. Presented by the Indonesian Fashion Chamber, this collaboration is an important step towards promoting cultural understanding and appreciation through fashion. By providing opportunities for designers from different backgrounds to showcase their talents, AFDS and IFC are helping to break down barriers and challenge traditional notions of beauty.

Spotlight Indonesia 2023 themed “Culture : Then and Now ” showcased the most creative, thought provoking fashion designers from around the regent and international. Fashion is about the future. But the richness of cultural background is our strength. Therefore, Spotlight unites the past and the future to create a product identity for the Indonesian.

Chantique Boutique by designer Fadzil Hadin – Brunei


“Three decades ago, I embarked on a journey to Indonesia, completely unaware that it would become the canvas for my dreams. Fate intervened when I forged a lasting friendship with the fashion director and choreographer of numerous prominent Indonesian fashion houses. Little did I know that this friendship would sow the seeds for my own fashion label. In the thriving atmosphere of Indonesia’s fashion scene, my aspirations took root, nurtured by the creative energy that surrounded me. Over the years, I found myself immersed in the artistry of design, absorbing inspiration from the rich tapestry of Indonesian culture. It was within this kaleidoscope of influences that the concept of “Happy Dreamer” was born—a testament to the belief that dreams can indeed materialise. The name itself encapsulates the essence of my journey, conceived at a time when the notion of having my own fashion label seemed like nothing more than a distant dream. “Happy Dreamer” reflects the optimism that guided me through the years, urging me to believe in myself and embrace the possibilities that lay ahead. About a year ago, the Happy Dreamer collection began to take shape. Fuelled by experimentation and a
desire to push the boundaries of conventional fashion, I found inspiration in the extravagant styles of the bling ladies of Dubai. In a world where more is more, I embarked on a creative journey to design pieces that not only stand out but also embody the courage to be different. Guided by the stars above, the Happy Dreamer collection represents more than just fashion; it’s a celebration of self-love and the audacity to chase one’s dreams. As the collection evolves, each piece tells a story—a story of resilience, creativity, and the belief that, indeed, everything is possible when you dare to dream. As the year draws to a close, my creative journey takes a festive turn, mirroring the celebratory spirit of the season. In crafting the latest additions to the Happy Dreamer collection, I’ve delved into the world of shiny fabrics, experimenting with an array of luxurious materials. The pieces come to life with the lustre of brocade, the opulence of Taffeta, and the ethereal grace of Silk Chiffon. Draping techniques take centre stage, allowing the fabrics to cascade in mesmerising folds and pleats. It’s a symphony of textures and colours, a visual representation of the joy and vibrancy that the holiday season brings. Each garment becomes a canvas for creativity, blending multiple fabrics seamlessly to evoke a sense of opulence and sophistication. The tin techniques add a touch of intricacy, creating patterns that shimmer and catch the light, reminiscent of stars twinkling in the night sky. It’s a nod to the guiding stars that have illuminated my journey, steering me towards the realisation of my dreams. In this season of festivity, the Happy Dreamer collection becomes a reflection of the joy found in self-expression, a
manifestation of the belief that fashion is not just about clothing but a form of art that speaks to the heart. As we embrace the holidays, these creations aim to capture the essence of celebration, encouraging wearers to revel in their uniqueness and shine brightly, much like the fabrics adorning them” says Fadzil Hadin.

The InSane Studio by designer Terry Yeo – Singapore


“Our Garden City”, this collection is inspired by the contrast of the manmade and the nature here in Singapore. Details like the knits and cords represent the plants and vine. Most of the details are at the rear of the outfit, because it’s like nature always finds ways to survive. Using green and grey represent the greeny and the concrete scenery in our city. All the fabrics used are recycled from previous collections and bespoke client requests, this is so there is no waste of any fabrics but to create a new collection and give it a new life” says Terry Yeo.

Pitnapat by designer Pitnapat Yotinratanachai – Thailand


“The inspiration is taken from Thailand’s sunset when the sky is painted in hues of orange and gold. The SIAM sunset bathes everything in a warm, orange light, creating a breathtaking spectacle.Bathed in the warm embrace of Thailand’s sunset, a radiant orange light graces the sky, casting a spell of inspiration that dances with the rich tapestry of Thai culture. This enchanting glow becomes the muse for a creation as vibrant as the heavens themselves. Crafted from the finest chiffon and silk, the royal attire takes shape, mirroring the elegance of traditional Thai regalia. In this sartorial masterpiece, the artistry of fabric cutting transcends mere design, capturing the essence of the sunset’s hues. The chosen orange fabric flows like a river, embodying the regality and grace of Thai heritage. Adorned with meticulous details reminiscent of royal accessories and headdresses, each stitch tells a story of tradition and sophistication. As
the wearer dons this resplendent garment, they become a living canvas, embodying the spirit of Thailand’s majestic sunsets and the timeless allure of its royal lineage. This fusion of nature’s breathtaking spectacle and the intricacies of Thai craftsmanship creates a masterpiece that transcends time, a testament to the harmonious dance between tradition and contemporary elegance” says Pitnapat.

Bilang by designers Zulhelmi Kamaluddin & Fikri Afif Daud – Brunei


“At Spotlight, Bilang showcased its Spring Summer 2024 collection called ‘Rendezvous’ which comprises of 12 thoughtfully curated outfits that takes its spectators on a journey to Brunei’s green exclave of Temburong to celebrate the country’s rich cultural tapestry as well as the lush Bornean rainforest that grace the landscape. The inspiration is evident through the display of calm shades of blue, reminiscent of the tranquil Brunei Bay that must be traversed in order to arrive at the rainforest nestled along the Temburong district’s trail, showcased through the swamp green outfits, before transitioning to the rich browns emulating the natural texture and hue of tree barks. Upon arriving in Temburong, one is greeted with a breathtaking exhibition of its culture, adorned by the captivating palette of red, black and white – colours; including the use of velvet fabric and pressed tree bark (called ‘Kayu Tulun or Timbaran’) – colours and materials that are synonymous to the Lun Bawang community who are indigenous to the district.Rendezvous incorporates intricate embroideries of local designs found on Brunei’s 10 and 20 cent coins observed since 1967 as stated in the Brunei Currency Board. The captivating claw-shaped pattern represents an animal, while the vertical oblong design is said to symbolise a tree. These remarkable patterns bear a resemblance to the revered traditional Pua Kumbu motifs of the lban community. We wanted the collection to be very wearable and versatile. Hence the selection of cotton, linen, denim as well as
other traditionally inspired motifs and materials. Each garment exuded a sense of effortless sophistication that harmoniously fuses with nature, culture and contemporary elements reflected in the silhouettes and fabric choices, aligning seamlessly with the event’s theme entitled Culture: Then & Now. In line with the event’s vision to celebrate different elements of culture including music, textile and film, Bilang is proud to collaborate with Hanif Iqbal and ByeHai, two Bruneian musicians, to accompany their runway show” says Zulhelmi Kamaluddin & Fikri Afif Daud

AFDS was developed to raise awareness and appreciation for the unique style and diversity in the Asean region while promoting greater cross-cultural and creative collaboration. Growing mainstream regional awareness for fashion designers and models while nurturing up-and-coming, local fashion designers and models. AFDS will continue to collaborate with Indonesia Fashion Chamber for more upcoming fashion festivals and fashion weeks in Indonesia this year.

Photography credit : Indonesian Fashion Chamber

For further information, imagery, photo shoots, interviews or media enquiries

Neva Weber of Dressed AU PR, International PR & Media Director for AFDS &
AIFW

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