Bringing a certain sense of originality into Indonesia’s street style scene, fashion designer Amot Syamsuri Muda combines urban styles with elegance and sportiness. It’s easy to be intrigued into becoming an instant fan.
The first time I encountered Amot’s work was when he did a collection for Jakarta Fashion Week in 2013. In this presentation, he impressed us with a collection inspired by the world of tennis. Contemporary working styles in muted colour tones from dusty blue, white, matcha green with gold dust to deep vibrant purples were paired with matching tennis shoes. As a whole, the series has a refreshing concept with an androgynous appeal, which continues to his future collections.
In 2017, Amot decided to start his journey by putting AMOTSYAMSURIMUDA as a brand on Indonesia’s fashion industry map. Focusing on only men’s collections, Amot has evolved his street style direction with more freedom and playfulness. With the passing of time and experience, Amot has blossomed like fine wine; his design has not only matured but has also helped cement his signature characteristics in the street style genre of Indonesian fashion.
The street style movement originated from a British fashion culture that separated itself from the mainstream based on strong individual styles. Fashionphiles use street style to express their various identities by crossing and reinterpreting trends. One can call this a performance and even a phenomenon of the 20th century. Over decades, we have seen the traditional socio-cultural influences such as hippies, b-boys, punks and sports practices become strong elements in creating the evolution of this fashion genre.
That being said, Amot never intended to create the brand solely to tap into the street fashion trend. “I want to create something fun, wearable and original. However, as a man who lives in an urban landscape, I am just creating based on my reflection of this environment. Personally, I never try to be different, instead, I want to do things that feel right to me. I follow my intuition and channel all the fun, creativity and that sense of being realistic to our surrounding into my collection. I like to stay relevant that way,” he says.
Amot came from the MTV generation who has a big passion for art and fashion shows. He realised from early on that academics are dull to his creative mind. He also had to deal with some bullying from his peers. After finishing high school, he decided to move to Singapore to study arts and design at Lasalle College of the Arts. It was there when one of his mentors encouraged him to take fashion instead. Amot took the advice.
After graduating, he worked as a freelance fashion stylist for a year before landing the creative director for ISIS fashion brand (later known as Sky.INC) for the next six years. Together with Andrea Risjad, Amot created a memorable imprint on turning a sporty style into elegant pieces of clothing for the brand.
Now, the 32-year-old designer acknowledges the importance of collaborative work. He sees collaboration as a challenge to perceive things through different perspectives. “I think the collaboration project really offers something new, the element of fun and unique styles, especially in the menswear market,” he says. After almost three years on his own, Amot has done a number of interesting collaborations with some of the biggest franchise brands such as Hello Kitty and Star Wars.
Both brands found Amot’s brand through social media and word of mouth recommendation. The designer received calls from the two labels in the same week.
“One day I got a phone call ‘Hey do you wanna do a collaboration collection? I was like ‘Huh? Of course!’” Amot recalls.
“I remember answering yes to Hello Kitty right there on the spot simply because my mom is a huge fan.
As for Star Wars, it was blibli.com who approached me. Growing up, I was all about R2-D2 and C-3PO and now, I am putting their faces on my designs.
Dreams do come true!”
Both of his collaborations received high praise from the fashion industry as well as the market. Based on these experiences, Amot believes that the key to a successful collaboration is to have an open mind and not to force his idea on the other brand.
“This year (2019), I didn’t just collaborate with brands, but also with influencers. It has been an interesting approach to learn and see things from other perspectives in order to create a fresh and unique look.”
This young and talented fashion designer is currently in the middle of preparing four new collections, three of which are collaborations. Planned to be launched before April 2020, we can hardly wait to see them. Someone who claims to have been a “mommy’s boy” is on the path to becoming great talent with originality and edge, and a legacy name in Indonesia’s fashion industry.