Vancouver Fashion Week S/S 21 - Interview With Designer Diana Rikasari (Indonesia)

Diana Rikasari - Showing Sunday, October 25th

Description -

DIANA RIKASARI is a fashion designer from Indonesia who is also a renown book author focusing on the topic of 'mindfulness'. Her inspirations are derived from life and her surroundings where she tends to inject humor and wit in her deliverables to create a fun, memorable and most importantly, meaningful piece of work. Either through her fashion designs or writings, Diana always tries to embed a message hoping that they can move and inspire others to do good, feel good.

"Fashion is how we communicate our feelings to the outer world, and I feel that fashion should be fun yet mindful and responsible."

Bio - 

Diana Rikasari is an award-winning fashion blogger, entrepreneur, and book author.

Being actively dedicated in the blogosphere since 2007, Diana has won several blog awards and become public speaker in various seminars and workshops. In 2011 and 2012, her blog ranked #1 in, being the most visited blog in Indonesia across all blog categories. With these achievements, Diana has been appointed to become Brand Ambassador of various local and international brands, ranging from fashion to beauty to telecommunication products.

Moving forward, Diana is a prominent player in the retail industry through her fashion brands, IWEARUP and SCHMILEYMO. For her works in both of these brands, Diana has been acknowledged as one of Indonesia's 100 Most Influential Youth, Women, Netizen (YWN) by The Marketeers & Markplus Inc., Inspiring Women of The Year by Wardah Cosmetics, and also won the International Young Creative Entrepreneur (IYCE) Award by British Council. Diana was recently named Best Small & Medium-Sized Enterprise Star of 2018 by Perempuan Bintang Awards.

Diana Rikasari was officially registered as the youngest to make it into the prestigious 50 Tokoh FTUI list by Universitas Indonesia for her significant contribution in the Arts and Culture sector in Indonesia. As for her regional milestone, Diana won the Top Fashion Influencer award by Influence Asia.

Diana is also popularly known as the author of the #1 mega-bestselling book series titled #88LOVELIFE. This book has won Best Book of The Year award for the Non-Fiction category by MPH Malaysia two years in a row. In 2018, Diana extended her writing passion to a younger segment where she published the My Rainbow Days book series for children.

Interview - 

Please share a bit about your journey to choose a career in fashion? Where did you choose to study or, if self taught, how did you gain your skills?

I studied Industrial Engineering for my Bachelor degree, and continued to do Masters in International Business Management. Upon graduation, I worked as a Quantitative Research Analyst in a market research firm. That aside, I have always loved fashion and playing dress-up since I was a child, I just never realized that fashion could be a career option for me. Long story short, I eventually decided to leave the corporate world and start my own fashion business with zero knowledge and experience, so I was definitely 100% self-taught. I learned from shoe makers directly, from tailors, from other fellow entrepreneurs, and recently I also decided to enroll in a fashion school to strengthen my skills.

You share a love of creating slow, ethical, handmade and upcycled fashions. How did you come to embrace this direction as a fashion designer and why is it important to you personally?

I always believe that in everything that we do or create, there has to be a greater purpose. As a fashion entrepreneur and designer, I have always asked myself, "(through my clothes), what good am I bringing to the wearer, and the society?". This is an important foundation to make sure that our creativity is not selfish, but instead, meaningful.

What was your inspiration for the clothing you'll be showing at Vancouver Fashion Week? What fabrics and palette did you use?

"In her new collection titled “COVID-19 QUARANTINE”, Diana challenged herself by creating a collection that is made by upcycling 100% materials found at home only. These pieces were all made at home, reworked and stitched from the comfort of her own room due to the recent COVID-19 lockdown. Having no access to fabric shops at that time and also limited sewing supplies at home, Diana decided to scout whatever objects she could find at home, such as her old baby’s playmat, socks, pouches, old cardigans, shawls, shoes, cushion cover and even a wig, deconstructed them and used these now raw materials as a starting point to design and create new clothes. At a challenging time when a global pandemic requires us to stay safe by staying at home, a new opportunity arises that is by challenging us to "create within limits."

The “COVID-19 QUARANTINE” collection presents 13 looks, a number purposely chosen to tickle the mind and heart. As the number 13 is synonymous with bad luck, Diana challenges the notion by asking, “what if, bad luck is just a perception?”, a question also directed towards this strange year that is 2020. How do you perceive 2020? An unlucky year, or a year of reborn? An answer only each of us can answer differently."

Where can fashion lovers go to purchase one of your wonderful creations? Are they all one of a kind? Do you do custom work?

At the moment, I collaborate with other brands to create reworked pieces from their deadstock or leftover fabrics. A recent one would be this one:

You list many different talents on social media. Please share with readers the other things you do outside of fashion design?

I am also an author of the bestselling book series, #88LOVELIFE. I currently have published 7 titles - all focusing on the topic of mindfulness.

Links -