Jakarta Fashion Week 2015: Day 5

by Julius Kensan
6th November 2014
Too much past, too little future. Show coverage and short reviews from Abineri Ang along with a collective of local designers.

Fashion week can be a dangerously mind-numbing event. One moment you’re stuck in traffic, braving your way through the pollution and crowds. The next thing you know, you’re seated beside the runway inside a large air-conditioned tent waiting to feast your eyes on beautiful creations.

When living in a topsy-turvy city like Jakarta, yearning for a little fantasy, a little escape from the reality is given. And on day 5 of Jakarta Fashion Week, a heavy dose of fantasy was presented on the runway through three separate shows as if you were served with three hefty mains in a three-course meal.

The shows consisted of three theme-based collections (The Golden Age of Renaissance Era, The Golden Age of China Emperor and The Golden Age of Indonesia Heritage) from the designer Abineri Ang and a collective of designers who trained under him. Abineri studied couture at Ecole de la Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture in France and there’s no prize for guessing what to expect from the trilogy of shows.

The shows were overloaded with extravagant visuals. Those who came looking for just a little reverie will leave biting off more than they can chew. The techniques and skills displayed on these painstakingly made outfits are no doubt impressive. But halfway through, you start to doubt these amplified fantasies and wish for a touch of reality.

During the second show, models sashayed down the runway in red wedding dress. Red for the bride? The nerve! But simmer down. Don’t forget that red is an auspicious colour in Chinese culture and the show was also based on the theme of China. Most of the pieces were heavily embroidered and appliquéd. A mermaid dress came with generous explosion of tulle at its tail. The fantasy shows no sign of letting up. Abineri Ang closed the trilogy in the similar vein with extravagant gowns.

There were so many details to digest – beadings, lacings and sequins. You start to hear the creative process of those designers in your head. “Wait, we still have some beads left? Ply them on! More is more, you silly goose”.

Gasps can also be heard from the audience. However, most of the time, it was due to the fact that the models almost tripped on the runway. Some of the dresses were so long, constrictive and heavy; you wouldn’t be surprised if the model has burned off her lunch by the time she reached the end of the runway.

These outfits will clearly secure one’s status in the upper echelon. But the problem with the collections was obvious: too much past, too little future.