Batik clothings with its variety of distinctive motifs have nowadays become emblems of traditional Indonesian clothing. This is the reason why Batik from Indonesia is so famous: because the characteristic of its motifs is deeply ingrained from the rich Indonesian cultural diversity and philosophy. In recent years, Batik clothes has become an everyday clothing worn by the people of Indonesia and has become one of the fashion trends.
In 2009, Indonesian batik has received international recognition from the UNESCO as a ”Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity”. For that reason, since 2009 and through Presidential Decree No. 33 of 2009, the Government of Indonesia set every October 2 as the ”National Batik Day”. This is a true testimony that Batik has been recognized and known not only in Indonesia, but also in the whole world.
A variety of beautiful Batik motifs has made Liis Barbara Boode, a designer from Estonia, felt in love with Batik and grew interest in designing clothing made of Batik. Liis has made her first acquaintance with Batik material when she visited Indonesia in 2016. Liis was fascinated with the history, traditions, and culture found on a single piece of Batik cloth. Liis increased her knowledge about Batik by reading books and searching articles on the internet.
As a result of her visit to Indonesia, Liis brought home 10 pieces of Batik material to Estonia and sew them into a cloth. The design of her Batik clothes is named Relax Baby Be Cool (RBBC) and for initial trial is marketed at the Rototom Sunsplash Reggae Music Festival in Valencia, Spain. Beyond expectation, all clothes were sold out. Aware of the market interest in her Batik design, Liis immediately went to Indonesia to hunt more batik materials. Her search took her to various Indonesian cities such as Jakarta, Solo, Yogyakarta, Pekalongan, and Bali. Liis wanted to choose her own Batik material to be use with her own design.
In February 2017, the RBBC Batik clothes were introduced at the Pure London Fashion Fair and got a warm welcome from the visitors. The high-end fashion magazine Harper’s Bazaar and Tatler has also given good reviews to RBBC.
Nevertheless, the Liis Boode Batik designs fall into the premium and exclusive clothing class, because the entire collection of her clothings are all handmade and use individual Batik motif for each outfit. One piece of clothing is worth 130 euros and the price of one set of clothes is 320 euros. Liis admitts that the prices are high but she believes that they are worth with the beauty of the Batik motifs that the consumers will get when buying her designs.
The materials used for the RBBC Batik clothes are made of Batik silk and cotton with a strong traditional motif coming from Yogyakarta and Surakarta, Garut and West Java, as well as Batik prada from Bali. The Batik motifs used include sekarjagat, kawung, machetes, truntum, and peacock ngibing motifs.
For the upcoming 2018 collection, Liis plans to combine hand-woven from Lombok songket and freshwater pearls, also from Lombok. Currently, the RBBC Batik clothes can be purchased through online bookings or directly in one of RBBC boutiques in London. In the future, Liis is dreaming to stay and settle in Indonesia while collaborating with local Batik designers in Indonesia. Boode Liis designs can be viewed at https://www.relaxbabybecool.com/ and her social media page https://www.facebook.com/relaxbabybecool/.