Guest student Tabitha Cockrell reports from Jakarta, Indonesia (in her own voice): What is Fashion Design?

Fashion design is an expression and an art that applies on outfits or clothing that derives from the current trends or not so current trends of clothing (or a particular style that could be taken out from a specific culture, country, tradition or movement). There are lots of elements to know about fashion design for us to fully understand what is it all about. From knowing the history of fashion and how it relates to our current trends, textiles, to fabrics, cloths, the ways of making the fabrics like weaving, knitting, and so on so forth. I used to study fashion design in college, and they taught me fashion history, from textiles to trends, how to draw a figurine, how to sew and make a pattern. It is all wrapped up in a course called Fashion Design.

I came from a large country called Indonesia, and I live in the capital city called Jakarta. Being quite a traveler myself, I have been to some big cities in the world like LA, New York, Tokyo, Sydney, Hong Kong. I have not been to Europe where Paris, Milan and London are the big fashion capitals there. And I observed their fashion sense and trends whenever I travel. I am very intrigued with each city’s unique style. In Tokyo, a lot of Japanese wearing unstructured clothes, lots of layers, and some color combination that they used are just out of this world. They call it “Harajuku Style”. Japanese designers like Yohji Yamamoto and Rei Kawakubo are two of my favorite designers. I love how they create the draping and the style of the clothing is very unique. I also love how New Yorkers dressed up. The feel of “Street Style” is appealing to me. It looks effortless and stylish at the same time. In my observation, Jakarta in the other side has a similarity with Hong Kong. Even though we have so many traditional clothes and fabrics such as ‘kebaya’ and ‘batik’ from different continents around the country, both our city and Hong Kong love to dress up “Hollywood Style” at events. Very neat and well groomed classy ad elegant style, wearing top brands like Hermes bags, Gucci, Roberto Cavalli dresses, Prada, Christian Louboutin shoes, Chanel bags, Louis Vuitton, you name it, they have it all.

As for current style, I make sure I keep up with the current style and trends via fashion magazines such as Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Elle and InStyle, also Fashion TV and fashion blogs on the Internet. Nowadays there are lots of media that you can avail yourself of the fashion world. I noticed that pastel colors are in, big chunky accessories like the ones Prada shows on magazine ad prints, brocade and broderie are also coming back, ikat prints are also in. So, there are so many possibilities for fashion trends that are just endless. And that what makes fashion amazing to me.