I Am Dewi Utari: From Assistant to the Fashion Limelight

This is not another assistant story like in the movie Devil Wears Prada. This is a story of a girl who is obsessed with her passion in fashion and succeed in it. She’s one of my colleagues in this industry that I have a big respect for her dedication and her hard work. First time I met Dewi Utari was during a cocktail show in Mulia Hotel, Senayan. Prior to that, I had only read her name in Harper’s Bazaar Indonesia as the Stylist Assistant, assisting the Head Stylist of Harper’s Bazaar Indonesia, Michael Pondaag.


Starting her career in Seventeen Magazine Indonesia, it has led her to make some of her dreams come true.  Now she is a Fashion Editor in Harper’s Bazaar Indonesia, an owner of a little chic store, a renowned Indonesian Fashion Blogger and also a regular Guest Radio Announcer. In her little chic store, we talked like there’s no tomorrow.  She’s a fun straight energetic person that focus to her goals and dreams.

When did the first time you get into the fashion industry?
About 6 years ago, around 2003.

Have you ever dreamed about working in fashion media before? What made you decide to work in fashion media?
Nope, not a clue. At first, I didn’t expect to work in media. All I wanted was to be a fashion designer, because I love fashion. But I didn’t have any background in fashion, so I was trying to be as close to the industry as possible, and one of the ways was being in a fashion magazine.

How long have you been working in Harper’s Bazaar Indonesia? And could you tell us about your career path since you’ve been there?
It’s been almost four and a half years. I started as a stylist assistant for my mentor, Michael Pondaag. I worked as his loyal assistant for about 2,5 years. It was quite a long time for an assistant, but during those 2,5 years I have learned MANY THINGS from a good man. Now in my 4,5 years, I am trusted as a Fashion Editor. And from my previous experiences now, I’m able to do my own editorial shoot.  The most exciting part is to experience a photo shoot in Tunisia, Sao Paulo, and Milan with me as the stylist. It’s quite an achievement for a girl that started as an assistant. *smiling*

What does it feel like to be working in one of most prestigious fashion magazines like Harper’s Bazaar Indonesia?

Who is your role model in fashion that influence your style and your works? And what 3 words that perfectly describe your style?
My role model is my mentor Michael Pondaag, and Emmanuelle Alt from Vogue Paris.
Three words about me: Fearless, youthful, whatever.


Tell us about your best and worst fashion moments that is unforgettable?
My best fashion moment was actually some couple of months ago at the Milan Fashion Week. Actually it was at the C’nC Costume National fashion show. I wore  this 50’s chic ensembles, and turned out as I got off from my taxi and walked through the pavement, all the fashion paparazzi shouted at me and asked me to stop, and all of the sudden, all the blitz were pointing at me, and I felt like a celebrity for a second! *laughing*
My worst was at Versace Fashion show a year ago. I shopped a lot, and I carried like these 3 big plastic bags. Since the show was very elegant, I definitely couldn’t bring those 3 big bags just like that, so I wore 3 or 4 jackets at a time, and there I went around looking like a King Kong!!! *laughing*

Being a stylist nowadays is quite a favorite choice for youngster since it looks glamorous and fun, any comments?
It is FUN! But for sure it’s NOT GLAMOROUS at all! Well, as a stylist you have to be able to do some “dirty job”, which include running errands searching for dresses all over the city, etc. It’s the end result on the glossy paper that makes it looks glamorous.

What’s the hardest part of being fashion stylist/editor?
The hardest part is when you ran out of ideas! Doom!

What do you think of Indonesian fashion these days?
“Walking” to a good path! and I’m waiting until it’s “Running!”

Who is your most favorite designer, both local and international? And why?
International: Alexander Wang because he’s such a breakthrough!!
Local: Random young designer! I like to wear new stuffs from random young designer because they have the freshest ideas and very fulfilling! My latest shopping notes was at the graduation of one International fashion school in Jakarta! No doubt! It’s one of my favorite shopping moments if I may say.

What is your most favourite trend for now?

You’re also the owner of a cute fashion shop named mi-casa-su-casa. Happy 1st anniversary to your shop by the way :). Why does it called “mi-casa-su-casa”, any fashion philosophy with the name?
mi-casa-su-casa means “my house is your house” in Italian. All the stuff in my shop was actually a RANDOM FIESTA! Many people have contributed for the shop, and most of are the people who have the love for traveling. That’s why most of my dresses and stuffs are from Los Angeles, London, and New York. But we do have local stuffs, and they’re fascinating! So come and shop! *laughing*


Why did you decide to open that shop?
It’s one of my dreams! And for sure I need to fulfill it before I get old!

Any specific style that you applied into the store? What’s your current best seller items in it?
Very chic Parisian atmosphere! My best seller is a pen that look likes a lipstick from Marc by Marc Jacobs.


Any fashion addiction?  And what things are you craving for yourself now?
I am addicted to sunglasses. And now I’m craving for a vintage Lanvin sunglasses.

You’re also an announcer in Trax fm, another passion of yours or just for fun? Tell us about it!
It’s actually my old time passion! Once I tried to be an announcer, but my destiny didn’t take me there. But now, as I work as a Fashion Editor, so they invite me to be their guest announcer. It’s a dream come true! *smiling*

And again you’re also a blogger, do you have any special goal or purpose with your blog or it’s just a mini chic diary of yours?
*Laughing* No serious goal. Just having fun with myself *laughing again*

What do you think of this fashion blog phenomenon in Indonesia?
Pretty crazy! but it’s fascinating though!

Which one do you like the most, fashion editor/stylist, or radio announcer, or fashion entrepreneur?

Editor, announcer, blogger, entrepreneur, What’s next?
A mogul for my own fashion business! Amen!

Amen to that girl! See ladies, no dreams, no passion, no hard work, no happy ending.

By the way, Fashionese Daily would like to congratulate Dewi Utari for her wedding to Nessa Khalifardi on 2nd October, 2009.

Hope you guys have a fairy tale married  life….