The Fashion Talk with Svastiari

Always a pleasure meeting this fashion stylist. Style wise, she always wowed us with the right mixture of edginess and chicness – resulting in a fashionable badassery altogether. After years of being a fashion stylist and fashion show director, she is now a lecturer for Fashion History subject in ESMOD, a prestigious fashion institution in Indonesia. Course, been a year since we featured her, we just gotta know what’s new with Svastiari.

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As a fashion history teacher, what do you think about the rise of streetwear and the fashion trend itself in general nowadays, especially in Indonesia?
“Yes, they are all over. But the thing is, if they’re doing it aimlessly, I dont think it’s gonna last or be worth it. I hope the future fashion generation adopt the philosophy behind fashion first and the impact of the brand that they’re gonna make; to know that what they’re doing and to contribute for this country. That’s actually what I’m thinking about local brands, ready-to-wear and stuff lately. Sometimes they don’t even think about the eco-friendly side, they don’t even think bout the impact on the labor cost, the workers and the manifacturers. Frankly speaking, our fashion scene is steadily getting somewhere – not strong enough but it’s expanding. Moving forward yes, but not there yet.”

So, be honest, which one do you like it better: fashion stylist, fashion director or lecturer?
“When I’m in my teacher shoes, my 8 years experience as a fashion stylist is very needed. The thing is, I won’t enjoy myself as a teacher now if I didn’t have the experiences. I’m feeling like I’ve been leveling up in life. Starting from my experiences, living with the experiences to the point where I share my experiences to others – I mean, those phases are so precious. This one is something different. And I honestly think that we can’t stay in one position in a long time without moving forward. Nowadays, I’m more focused, more calmer in facing problems.”

“At the end of the day, I like everything I do in the fashion world – either in styling, fashion directing, writing or teaching.”

Let’s talk about fashion trends, from the 80s-90s to today, what are your thoughts about it?

“Fashion has evolved through times, and nothing’s new. But staying true to your own product is always needed, when you’re being honest to yourself and don’t copy others – all efforts are worth it.”

“Talking about fashion eras, my ultimate favorite is the post-war era in the 40s. In that era, women didn’t need a fancy and glamorous clothing, and they sort of went back to basic, to their roots. The simple line of clothes, the colors and all – they screamed an honesty. An honest honesty era. Plus, Coco Chanel graced the whole fashion industry at that era. That’s why I’m into history and literature, and currently teaching fashion history.”

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If you could rebrand your style, would you do it? Or would you still go to your current style?
“Hmm, when we did my first editorial shoot with Letter F a year ago, we came up with a gothic girl – dark clothes and atmosphere. I wanted the opposite feeling this time around. Softer and calmer – but it doesn’t mean that I left behind my original character.”

“I honestly can’t change myself into something completely new. But I’m trying now to wear more color than black.”

“I once wore white blouse with beige pants and Tri Handoko complimented how good I look in that kind of color palatte. Trying something new never harms anyone, as long as you don’t step out from your real personality.”

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Active as a fashion stylist and a teacher, do you have some concerns when you try to convey a message through your fashion style?
“Absolutely. That is my main goal, to educate people about fashion. Especially for my students, I’m trying to give the best trait that I could offer. Even from the smallest things like being discipline, because it’s a basic knowledge for me. The thing is, if they don’t own positive attitude, clients most likely wouldn’t hire them. And as for my clients, I’m hoping that every clothes that I picked for them have their own values. I’m trying to brainwash them on how to wear and how to behave. In short, I want to contribute my fashion knowledge to them.”

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The tendency in the fashion world today also includes on many fashion stylist or bloggers who then became a fashion designer with their own brand, do you also have that in mind?
“I got that question a lot, to be honest. I mean, many fashion stylists ended up releasing their own brand or fashion line. But again, I don’t want to ‘snatch’ designer’s work place. Since I’m more a creative thinker kind of person, I don’t think business woman suits me. I prefer to do a collaboration.”

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Writer: Adhinda Latifa
Photographer: Moody Wijaya
MUA: Fadilah Putri
Stylist: Hilarius Matthew
Digital Imaging: Dela Naufalia
Wardrobe: Lovo, available at

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