JFW 2014: All Eyes on the Cleo Fashion Awards!

Day Five of Jakarta Fashion Week (JFW) was a particularly exciting one, with plenty of fully-packed shows. First off, check out our video coverage to see some of the excitemen that went down!

One of the shows I was most looking forward to on Day Five were the Cleo Fashion Awards (CFA). It has not only become one of my favourite shows at JFW, but it also carries deeper personal meaning for me. It serves as a reminder of how I become a writer for fashion-related pieces: I joined FD in April 2009 as a Beauty Editor on a freelance basis and it was in November that year that I wrote my first fashion piece, which was about CFA. This was way back when most of the shows were still occupied by senior designers and very few young local designers stepped foot on the runway. In fact, the idea of CFA was still so freshly brewed that it was held in the Fashion Atrium instead of the tent. It was the year that some of my favourite designers and labels like Klé, Geulis, Danjyo Hiyoji and Hunting Fields shared the same stage.

Since that day, the CFAs have never failed to deliver fresh stock of bright and talented local labels. Since snowballing in importance and relocating to the Fashion Tent, it has become one of the most anticipated (and packed) shows at JFW. Being part of the CFA has catapulted many labels into the spotlight. This year they only focused on two arenas: Most Promising Accessories Brand and Most Innovative Local Label.

The show opened up with last year’s winner Fréj and Identité‘s newest collections. I think this goes to show that the labels that have been chosen by CFA are not just great ones, but also capable of surviving in the business. It shows their continuation and where they are after the CFA: are they still alive and kicking as a brand and evolving in style? These labels are not one hit wonders.

If last year’s collection used the pencil as motif, this time Fréj channeled their creative stroke with paint brushes with the same precision in arrangements that stands up to their previous collection. Truth be told, from last year’s nominee for accessories, my heart flutters more for MOREANDMORE with their collection that fused acrylic materials with wood, stainless steel and titanium. But seeing where they are today, one year after the CFA and no new collection in sight, I can see why Fréj is included within the CFA hall of winners. They can differentiate between creating something that is innovative and true to them while creating another collection that will sell well in the market. Check out their more modest collections at The Goods Dept and you’ll see accessories that are more everyday-ready. That is how a brand can survive, by actually selling their creations!

Identité seems to be going strong with their sporty feminine DNA and majority black ensemble, which is my cup of tea. I’m won over by the black, so it’s safe to say that this simple collection has won me over.

Curious for this year’s CFA finalists? Click through to the next page.