The (Photo courtesy of Antara)

Jember Fashion Carnaval Keeps DIY Spirit Alive


AUGUST 29, 2016

Jakarta. Jember Fashion Carnaval, famous for its outlandish do-it-yourself fashion parades, celebrates its 15th anniversary this year. The highlight of this year's show was its "Grand Carnival" show on Sunday (28/08), where models strutted along a street catwalk near the main square in Jember, East Java, wowing the crowd with their carnivalesque costumes.

The fashion festival's central theme this year is "Revival," meant to celebrate Indonesia's industrial revival, including its fashion industry. In three days starting on Aug. 25, this central theme was elaborated in various shows under ten different headlines: Garuda, Hortus, Technocyber, Woods, Paradisaea, Refugees, Ocean, Chandelier, Olympic and Barong.

Among many high-profile guests at the festival was Susi Pudjiausti, the controversial minister of maritime affairs and fisheries and a long-time supporter of home industries. The minister made a surprise appearance on the Grand Carnival catwalk on Sunday alongside Jember district head Faida and festival president Dynand Fariz.

Edy Wales, a Swiss TV journalist attending the festival said, "JFC is amazing, I am inspired to make a documentary feature about it."

"I’m in total awe of the fantastic ideas expressed so wonderfully on the catwalk, the costumes are absolutely beautiful. I was especially intrigued by the "Ocean" show, as a lot of my work involves making underwater documentary," Wales said.

Clo Meunier, a French tourist who made her way down to Jember especially for the show, said she was flabbergasted by the variety of costumes in the Grand Carnival show. To her, the costumes were as interesting as what she saw at the famous Rio Carnival.

"The costumes were amazing, and they were all homemade not by fashion designers from big fashion houses, but by hobbyists at home. And yet the costumes were at once beautiful and also managed to show off many elements of Indonesian culture,” Meunier said, as quoted by Antara News.