JFW 09/10: Ni Luh Sekar & Dewi Fashion Knight

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One of the highlights of Jakarta Fashion Week is Dewi Fashion Knight. It’s where Dewi’s chosen designers show how they tailored their talents and creativity according the theme. This year title is The Sould of Modernism.

Here, Ni Luh Sekar, Dewi magazine Editor-in-Chief share the story behind Dewi Fashion Knight to give you more ideas about it. Pictures will be posted next.  Down at the bottom of the Interview, Ni Luh also tells us a little bit about her love of the fashion industry that is a must read for everyone who wants to step in to the industry.

Can you tell us the idea behind ‘The Soul of Modernism’?

We came up with the theme because we feel the emphasis should be a view that is forward looking and optimistic, which are the key principles of modernism. Of course, this does not mean that tradition or heritage should be ignored. Instead, we want the designers to infuse the spirit and soul of modernism into tradition.


How many dresses are going to be showcased in total?

Each designers presented 12 pieces, thus there were 96 pieces in total. This amount is excluded the India-Indonesia collaboration collection from Sebastian Gunawan and Priyo Oktaviano.

How was the process like?

Each chosen designer created a collection that was specially designed for Dewi Fashion Knights. We treat this process very carefully. We see ourselves as a curator / editor of the fashion direction. We follow these designers closely for a year, we work with them all the time, e.g. for fashion spreads. We also see how their creations are received by the market, society figures, etc.


There were 10 designers last year and only 8 this year. Any special reason?

Every year we sort of impose a standard to be met by the designers for that period. But we also make sure as best as we can that there is a regeneration of talents every year.

Six of the designers were also selected for last year’s Dewi Fashion Knight. What are the specific criteria to be selected?

Each of them owns a distinct character. They are also proven craftsmen, with strong commitments to innovation. We do look at how their work is received by the market, but this is not strictly business results per se. It also includes thinking how their clothes actually make people look when they wear them. So, wearability is a factor, even though it does not mean the clothes should not be “creative” or “conceptual”. We seek the equilibrium.

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Oka Diputra, Lenny Agustin, Barli Asmara, Ali Charisma

What’s your favorite piece from the whole collection in Dewi Fashion Knight?

Each collection carries a unique trait. For example, Ali Charisma clearly successfully presented a ‘complete package’ of idea; a beautiful knot tied the concept, materials, silhouette and accessory altogether. On the other hand, Barli Asmara, the youngest in the group, has really tested himself by pushing his pattern making skill to another level and daringly chose to bring the energy out and about through ‘the sound of youth’ from Rock n’ Roll Mafia.

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Now let’s talk a little bit about you. I know a lot of girls who would kill to be in your position. How does it feel to be an Editor In Chief of Dewi Magazine? And since it’s already the top position in magazine hierarchy, what is your next step?

Being the Editor in Chief of Dewi magazine is one of the best things that has happened to me. It makes me feel great and grateful. My next step, just keep walking toward positive directions that makes sure Dewi magazine is always the best fashion and lifestyle guidance in Indonesia.

Any advice for girls dreaming to work in glossy magazine/fashion industry? Any common misconception about working there?

You have to always open your eyes and ears, listen and see with your brain and heart. Get to know as many people and things as you can, seek any possibilities within them, then curate them accurately. About common misconceptions, well, actually I’m not sure what the misconceptions are, but I will break down the ones I know:

  • Having branded items grace your body: Yes it’s a plus point, but having them will be nothing if you are clueless about the quality value that makes something worth much more than a dime.
  • We are highly critical and ‘high maintenance’: We have high standards and are not easy to please simply because we are used to choose only the best for our readers.
  • We have to be skinny and beautiful: Actually; looks without deep thoughts is a waste of time, deep thoughts without looks is not maximally functioned.

What is your mantra for surviving Jakarta Fashion Week? (Lots of vitamins, maybe? killer heels? or just being stylish all week long?)

Vitamins and looking stylish was surely useful survival tools for the whole week, but none of them wouldn’t have worked without tons of love for fashion industry, and huge curiosity to see who’s doing what and how they do it to get somewhere. I wore outfits that didn’t get in the way when I worked through the fashion week. I combined national and international labels altogether to create a look with details that’s true to my profession, without making me being the objects of fashion.

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Thank you for sharing, Mbak Ni Luh. I couldn’t agree more that the only way to survive fashion week is the love and the curiousity about the industry. That’s what made our crew survived the grueling hours of fashion week and still hungry for more ..:)