Jakarta. "Kama Asmara," an exhibition of traditional Indonesian wedding attires will be presented at The Ritz-Carlton Jakarta hotel's ballroom from Friday (29/06) to Sunday.
"It's the first [Indonesian] traditional wedding exhibition ever held in a five-star hotel in Jakarta," Adeza Hamzah, cluster director of marketing communications of The Ritz-Carlton Jakarta, Mega Kuningan and JW Marriott Jakarta, said in a press conference on Tuesday (26/06).
The theme, "Kama Asmara," means "God of Love" in Sanskrit.
"The theme is in line with Indonesian traditional weddings that we highlight in this exhibition," said Dini Tirta, the hotels' cluster director of weddings.
According to Dini, in the past two years, demand for traditional weddings has steeply increased.
"Currently, about 40 percent of weddings held at our establishments are Indonesian traditional weddings," Dini said.
For the exhibition, the hotel partners with event organizer Carnaval Wedding.
"People are returning to their roots these days," said Ega Alamsyah, representative of the wedding organizer. "That's why traditional weddings are such a hot demand these days."
There will be around 50 wedding vendors at the exhibition, including bridal houses, photographers, wedding decorators and food and beverages providers.
"A special agenda in the exhibition is a daily auction of wedding packages starting from Rp 1,500,000 ($104)," Ega said.
Bridal Shows and Fashion Trends
The wedding exhibition will be opened at 6 p.m. with a traditional Javanese dance, "Bedhaya Ela Ela" performed by Sanggar Bharata dance club.
Afterwards, bridal house Aluira Kebaya will present a solo fashion show themed "Simple Glamour."
"In the fashion show, I will present black velvet kebaya and baju kurung [traditional loose-fitting tunics] from different parts of Sumatra," said Liza Aluira, owner and designer of Aluira Kebaya.
According to Liza, the traditional black velvet kebaya is making a comeback in Javanese-style weddings.
"[Black velvet kebayas] are so regal and elegant," she said.
Sparkle is also an important element in wedding attires.
"In this fashion show, all our wedding attires will be richly adorned with sequins and crystals," Liza said. "A lot of bling is usually preferred for Indonesian weddings."
Aluira Kebaya will present another bridal collection, which is more modest, in a fashion parade on the final day of the exhibition on Sunday.
The fashion parade on Sunday will also showcase bridal collections by Fitri Alamsjah and Rumah Kebaya.
In the parade, Fitri Alamsjah will present a mini collection themed "Cultural Diversity."
Highlighted in the mini collection are two Minangkabau and Sundanese wedding attires from West Sumatera and West Java.
The Minangkabau costume will feature a semi-transparent baju kurung in fuchsia-hued brocade, paired with a golden kain songet (traditional handwoven textile from West Sumatra.
A tall and elaborate suntiang (traditional golden tiara) will crown the model wearing the Minangkabau attire.
The Sundanese wedding costume has a long kebaya made entirely of white lace. Its heart-shaped neckline is dotted with crystals.
"Full-length kebayas are in demand these days," said designer Fitri Alamsjah. "To add a wow effect, we could also embellish it with a detachable long train at the back."
In the parade, Rumah Kebaya bridal house will present a mini collection of kutubaru kebayas.
Kutubaru is a traditional Javanese kebaya with a characteristic chest band that connects the lapels.
"Today's women adore kutubaru kebayas," said Eva Pudjojoko, owner and designer of Rumah Kebaya. "If properly designed, these kebayas can make a woman look much taller and slimmer."
Brides and grooms should also pay attention to choosing the kain (wraparound cloth) to complement their wedding attires.
"Your guests are your audience and they have very discerning eyes," said Eva, who has over 20 years of experience in bridal kebayas. "If your kain doesn't match your top, they will definitely talk."
For example, brides and grooms from Yogyakarta usually wear brown batik with the Sido Mukti pattern. Those from Surakarta, Central Java, also wear batik with the same pattern, but in white.
The Sido Mukti pattern carries the message of "happily ever after."
"I believe traditional wedding attires will never go out of style," Eva said. "They carry so much meaning for the bride's and groom's families. Wearing them would also make the wedding feel more sacred and momentous."