To celebrate Hari Raya Kartini, we chatted with three of our inspiring friends from three different fields. Each one of them has a unique style and stories that define them as strong modern women. Meet Deviana, Dinar, and Michelle.
1. What's your 1st memory of Hari Kartini?
Devi: My first memory would be when I was 7 years old and got dressed up as kartini with my fellow classmates. We performed “Ibu kita Kartini” song and we had an intense training before that big day. It was fun and I can still sing to Ibu kita Kartini song up until now!
Dinar: I remember when I was still in kindergarten, I got dressed up in traditional Indonesian clothing and full makeup for a school's recital!
Michelle: I was in primary school and was asked to join poetry recital contest in full traditional attire. I remember I was dressed in Balinese but when I came forward, I forgot all the lines I had to recite and cried.
2. What does Kartini mean for you?
Devi: Kartini is the first Indonesian female figure that has the courage to speak her thoughts. She is still very much inspiring and relevant until today because of her strenght and spirit to empower Indonesian women.
Dinar: Kartini is the true visioner warrior! Her thoughts are revolutionarily and way beyond her years; an equalism. For me, Kartini is not exclusive just for females, but modernity as a whole. On her time, the female status was sadly seen as secondary. That's why I think if we choose to portray just one gender, at the end of the day what we would like to talk about is equality.
Michelle: Kartini is a female figure who is smart and revolutionary, a woman with such a modern way of thinking way beyond her time. She dreamt of expanding the opportunity for education for women from her time. What was magical is that she did not just stay put, but she fought for her dream. To me, Kartini is an inspiring Indonesian hero.
3. Describe your style for work!
Devi: My style has to be comfortable! I work as a dentist, so I usually wear white and it has to be stylish so that I can represent myself well in front of my patients.
Dinar: Comfort. Monochrome. Practical! I want something that will help me get through my agenda of the day seamlessly. Maybe versatile would be the best way to put it.
Michelle: Sophisticated, eclectic, and unexpected. I am never really a monochrome at heart, my style is rather experimental because I actually like to try everything. I’m a fashion designer, so my style for work should represent both myself and my brand.
4. Working women must have fashion item(s)?
Devi: Classic black blazer , tote bag to fit everything inside, and a classic louboutin black heels for every occasion!
Dinar: A blouse and a black dress. I’m not much of a fashion forward girl haha.. But trust me, these two basics can take me from pitching to play, seamlessly!
Michelle: Invest in statement handbag, white heels. I do think working women look more sexy in white heels. And of course, outerwear! It easily elevates any of your simple outfit.
5. Your go-to work bag at the moment?
Devi: Mine would be Goyard tote bag & Hermès Constance!
Dinar: A tote bag from a Yogyakarta based leather artisan called Roro.
Michelle: Delvaux 'Brilliant' bag and Goyard 'Saigon' Bag.
6. What does it take to be a modern day Kartini?
Devi: Dream big & don't be afraid to hustle to reach your goal. And one more important thing, is to empower each other , because girls do run the world.
Dinar: The ability to juggle between roles. I realize multitasking is such a necessity especially for women to stay ahead, not just career-wise but also on social and personal level.
Michelle: In one of her letters, Kartini wrote, "We can be a wholesome human being, without stopping to be a wholesome woman." Being a modern Kartini, in my opinion, it is very essential for every woman to have a dream and courage to make it happen without losing their identity as women. Such as, if you have a fulltime career, or if you choose to be a housewife, everything is a valid choice. To have the heart of a woman who is patient, full of love, and tenderness, I think it is the most beautiful thing that has been given upon us that we should never forsake.