There’s more to Indonesia than its world-famous batik prints and picture-perfect beaches. The country is witnessing a newfound surge of creativity rising above the tide, and these 14 emerging designers are ready to ride the wave and set the stage as the archipelago’s next fashion superstars. Part of RISING MERDEKA, an initiative that aims to become a “bridge for both Indonesian and Singaporean designers” to make inroads in the markets of both countries, here’s a glimpse of the talent you can expect at the special pop-up happening from now until 31 August at Paragon.
- Who knew that wooden watches can be chic and cute? Crafted from a small village in Jogja, these handmade watches have a vintage-inspired appeal that you can wear everyday. Compared to most fine watches, Woodka’s faces feature interchangeable straps.
2. alexa [a]lexa
The ’70s get a contemporary reboot with contrasting prints, bursts of colour and work-friendly silhouettes. Designed by Monique Natalia Soeriaatmadja and her husband, Sendy Soeriaatmadja, the brand’s urban retro aesthetic earned them an award for being the Most Innovative Brand at the Cleo Fashion Awards in 2014.
Ran out of what to wear at Happy Hour? Look no further than DTale’s flouncy cocktail dresses and sharply tailored button-down shirts. Perfect for a 9 to 6 lifestyle, each garment reflects the strength and sensuality of a professional working woman who can command her presence on and off the boardroom.
Filled with architectural drapery, clean lines and mannish tailoring, Debora Mettu’s designs instantly remind us of Ann Demeulemeester. With a degree in architecture from Esmod Jakarta, it’s no secret that Mettu’s pieces are sold at top department stores such as Debenhams and Alun Alun in Jakarta.
Clean, yet feminine, the minimalist-inspired modestwear line is bound to make heads turn. However, the line isn’t entirely conservative as it offers thigh-grazing hemlines and skin-baring one-shoulder necklines. Go big or go home with this party-hearty fashion line.
Related article: 12 Modest Wear Fashion Influencers To Follow On Instagram
6. Maison Met
As hybrid of prêt-à-porter and haute couture, Maison Met’s red carpet-ready designs look like they belong inside the closet of a celebrity stylist. Simmering with glamour and Old Hollywood class, the designer’s eye for beading and drapery is not to be missed.
Inspired by the archipelago’s abundant natural resources, each design captures elements of nature inside a resin casing. Whether it be a grain of rice, sand or chili flakes, each necklace, earring and bracelet is packed with subtle statements that jazz up an outfit.
8. Danjyo Hijoyi
Bordering between contemporary streetwear and traditional Indonesian garments, the designer makes unisex garments that can transition between a man and woman’s closet. Unlike most Indonesian brands, it has a Japanese-inspired influence that recalls Yohji Yamamoto‘s famous simple sweeping lines.
Perhaps Indonesia’s answer to Marimekko, a riot of colours splash across a plain white canvas. Filling up empty spaces with a smorgasbord of designs, let your eyes get lost in the mire of zigzags and palm trees. Made for the bohemian world traveler, each piece from Bermock feels like a collectible souvenir that you will treasure again and again.
10. Hunting Fields
Modern and minimal may be the aesthetic among the majority of Indonesian designers; however, Hunting Fields begs to differ. Rather than following their peers, the brand embellishes their sweaters, tops, dresses and pants with cascading ruffles. Pulling all the punches with accordion pleats and knot details, Hunting Fields redefines the meaning of modern island dressing.
11. Pattent Goods
Pattent Goods reflects the spirit of the globe-trotting cultural nomad. It offers gloves, blankets and socks decorated with Scottish-inspired Fair Isle or traditional ikat prints.
Inspired by Indonesia’s cultural tradition of textile art, Purana collaborates with local artisans to design one-of-a-kind textiles. Sculpted by on-trend silhouettes, each garment is adjusted to all types of bodies thanks to its one size fits all approach.
Related article: Get To Know: Indonesian Fashion Designers Audrey And Cynthia
The Bali-based designer is not just another sun and surf-inspired Balinese brand. With swimwear as their foundation, the brand offers body-con colourful swimsuits alongside its signature mandala printed kaftans and form-fitting maxi dresses.
14. Jeffry Tan
Known for his all black palette and jumpsuits, it finally dawned on us as to why he is Kylie Minogue‘s go-to designer. Based in Jakarta, Tan incorporates fitted tailoring, sculpted silhouettes, sensual draping and party-friendly metallic fabrics for a sleek cosmopolitan aesthetic.