NINE FASHION designers presented their latest women's collections during the recent Indonesia Fashion Week, dazzling a young audience dressed up for the event.

For the "Muslim Wear" show, designer Yoha Friska Mei Fanny offered the grunge-style Yoha line dominated by black and white geometrical designs and a hijab style inspired by the Eastern European practice of tying a triangular scarf under the chin.

Zakia Bamahri's Zaq collection had a masculine touch with tunic, vest and asymmetrical shirts in checks or vertical stripes. To accentuate the design, the hijab covered only the hair and neck.

The Hava line also presented dynamic designs suitable for teenagers. The layering of outerwear over cotton shirts, crop tops and the use of see-through materials and sneakers rendered the outfits suitable for any occasion.

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West Nusa Tenggara motifs were celebrated in Shahia's collection, while Lia Afif played with Palembang songket, adorned with accessories usually used by brides. Lia also arranged the hijab in the style of rural South Sumatra women.

Hanny Lovelly and Janeeta used luxurious fabrics in their designs, while Si.Se.Sa designers showed the classical cut of sharia Muslim wear, with flowing gowns and two-pieces in pastels adorned with pearls.

Japanese designer Chiharu Horiuchi made her debut at the fashion week by using kimono fabric to create loose two-pieces, jackets and outerwear. She emulated Japanese bridal headwear in a hijab in some designs.

"It's unintentional, but the designs are indeed embodied in my culture," she said through a translator.

Online boutique Hijup.com also made its debut, on the second day of the event, bringing out ethnic-inspired Muslim fashions. "We're proud to expose the rich cultural diversity and multiethnic acculturation through modest fashion designs," said chief executive Diajeng Lestari.

Zaskia is among the Indonesian designers active in popularising local Muslim style by taking part in overseas shows, including the recent New York and London fashion weeks.

"We'll continue pursuing our dream of getting Indonesia recognised as a 'pole' of world Muslim fashion," Diajeng said.

Senior designer and event coordinator Musa Widyatmodjo said the designers had to determine a character unique to Indonesia to achieve the dream.

"We don't have the technology to emulate Paris' high fashion or China's mass production. Our strength lies in ethnic crafts, such as woven cloth and embroidery. Aside from that, a well-organised industry for Muslim fashion is a must."

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