December 31, 2014

Dear readers,

This year went really fast and I first want to start by thanking you for reading my blog De reis naar Batik. This year I celebrated my 5 year anniversary of my blog and I wish for many more birthdays!
I had a wonderful Art year (see; I had my first exhibitions abroad and went four times to an Island! Unfortunately not Indonesia, but it was so good to travel again. It gave me less time to blog, so I still have many stories to share. Planning to spend the next couple of months working on posts, so that you can read more about my adventures of 2014.

Looking forward to 2015. Starting something new, continuing my art career, working on my health and keep learning & sharing about Batik, Wax prints, (Folk) Art, Temporary Art and (colonial) History! So lets get this party started!

Looking forwards means also looking back, and looking back I really want to thank people for their support, love, ideas, inspiration and friendship!

Thank you, grandparents for making me fall in love with Indonesia and its culture!
Thank you Koen, adventure is out there!
Thank you Mom, for reading my posts and enjoying my bad English!
Thank you Chayet, for your wonderful blog Nothing But The Wax and all the support!
Thank you Marlisa, looking forward working together!
Thank you Batikmakers & Batiklovers for keeping this great tradition & textile alive! 
Thank you!

Good bye 2014!

Batik Statement in de snow
Photos by Koen de Wit
Wearing Batik skirt found in secondhand shop, Batik blouse that belonged to my grandfather, 
Batik bag from my grandmother, headwrap by The Wrap Life
origami-batik-blouse earrings & batik-bow by me

See you in 2015!

December 19, 2014

As Far As The Eye Can See

Chayet Chiénin from Nothing But The Wax got interviewed for V-Inspired from Vlisco! * I was already emailing her to congratulate her before reading it fully. After pressing send, I continued to read and got such a nice surprise from her, I almost fell of my chair. Best virtual present ever! Thanks soooo much!
She is very right about my love for textiles with birds.** My own small Batik and Wax print collection is full of birds and on my blog I dedicated already many posts about textile patterns with birds.

The funny thing is, that's synchronicity for you, I was already preparing a post about a bird textile, because I love me a good Chicken Motif any day!
I already shared their product in the two previous posts, so it was time to make a post completely about the Indonesian textile company Sejauh Mata Memandang. They make handmade Batiks, Tulis & Cap, and their first collection is with a pattern based on a Noodle bowl image with a chicken.
I first saw their products online on Instagram during the Bazaar Fashion Festival 2014 (22 - 26 October). I loved that they used one motif to make a collection full of different products. From sarong to bag, from bandana to slipper.

On the BFF 2014 catwalk the models were wearing both designed clothing as just wrapped around cloth. The indigo-white combination is tradition, yet it is very strong and give it a modern feel.
As you can read, I'm a total fan, so decide for yourself with the short interview and their Batik Statement, the 20th Batik Statement I received for my blog!!

Can you tell me how and when you started?

We're in love with batik since childhood. We start it recently, we'd love to remind the young generation that batik is not a motive, it's the process where you use the wax. The pattern could be as playful as we want.

Where is the Batik produced/made? 

In Pekalongan on Java, Indonesia

Why Batik? And why Cap & Tulis, instead of printed cotton? My blog is about sharing the love for handmade Batik, so I love to hear & share your opinion about that!

We love everything handmade...We love the process of making a textile. We love age old technique to enamored simple, close to the heart design.

Why the Chicken bowl pattern? 

We love noodle
We love the chicken and the flower patten on the bowl.
Sejauh is inspired by all the little things around us that made us love Indonesia.

Do you use natural colouring or chemical dye?

We use both

What is your favorite product (which of your own products?) and why?

We love Kain Pagi sore.
Pagi sore has two different patterns hand painted diagonally, giving two options to be worn. It's the clever design and the philosophy of efficient beauty That makes it important to keep the love alive.

What is your plan for the future? A new Batik pattern? Or a different technique from Indonesia?

A new pattern...We love patterns!

And last but not least!
I have a project on my blog called Batik Statement. I ask people to share their photo wearing Batik with me and ask them why they use, wear and express themselves with Batik.
I would love the receive a Batik Statement from you for my blog!

20th Batik Statement XX 

I like the personality of a handmade batik, it stands out, it makes me feel I alone have what I'm wearing, it compliments individuality. Be your own self. That's just my way of looking at it.
- Chitra Subijakto 

To enjoy more from Sejauh Mata Memandang, visit

* "Meet the fashionblogger...Chayet Chiénin" on
** Previous posts about textiles with birds: Difficult TimeThe chicken and the egg &
In May all birds lay an egg 
*** Last year in December I also had a nice Vlisco suprise, read more in "The best kind of prize is a *sur*prise!"
**** "Fabric of India" Upcoming must-see exhibition full of textiles with birds at V&A in London (UK), more on

December 11, 2014

Happy Wrapping!

My headwrap experiments on Instagram

On Facebook a link came by about the upcoming Di'Xpressions Headwrap workshops*. I was talking about it with my friend Isa Gama before, that we should definitely try to learn how to make those impressive headwraps. So me and Isa set a date and on the 28 of September we headed to Amsterdam  (NL) for the workshop.

Of course we were a little late, so we choose quickly one of the bold coloured fabrics so we could start learning. Diana introduced us to 6 (maybe more) headwraps, and more importantly how to make a nice and secure base. We had so much fun and the wraps are amazing.
I'm already a big fan of knotting and wrapping cloths, also because it's a nice solution to make clothing without sewing. For my Batik Statements I try to makes as many possible outfits without having to cut the beautiful Batiks & Wax prints I own.
Headwraps are by far the best way of displaying beautiful fabrics. You make a statement, add a 'bang' to your outfit and it is just so pretty! It's like gift-wrapping your head!

Me & Isa Gama at the Di'Xpression Headwrap workshop

I have to say most wraps looked better on others than me, but step by step I'm trying out different and smaller versions on my head. I also discovered that it is a great solution for Winter-hair. You know when first your ears freeze off, then you go inside and your hair is static or just flat or both. Well with a headwrap you keep your ears warm and when you enter somewhere you just have this colourful bow or knot on your head! Perfect!

I watched a ton of tutorials these passed few weeks; from traditional (in many different ways, due to many different cultures) and 50's style, to 10 different ones with one scarf, crowns, angisa, headwraps & headscarfs. I'm still wrapping it wrong, but I get so much inspiration from them. And it's fun to watch, so here is a little selection of my favorites!

More video's by Diana of Di'Xpression on the Vlisco YouTube channel

Turbante-se ▲ Thais Muniz (not a tutorial actually, turning every cloth into a headwrap, a headgift!)

Project {Tribe} Crown Tutorial (their outfits are awesome in this clip)

How To Wear a Headwrap | Turban Style and Bow Scarf (so cute! great end result with the multicolored bow)

How to Tie a Headscarf (her accent rocks)

Turban style tutorial- Summer headwrap (great YouTube channel)

Four New Ways to Tie a Headscarf. More Vintage Glamour! (another one of the same glamour girl with the pretty accent, wauwie)

And my number 1 favorites are made by The Wrap Life

The Wrap Life videos are gorgeous and the fabrics even more so! I bugged my boyfriend to buy one for me by showing the videos and pics. Look all handmade, look so nice! He replied: Of course you can, if I get the pretty lady on the couch *wink*.
So, I got my wish and two days ago this lovely wrapped package arrived. The actual fabric is as pretty presented as their online image. I went for 'Clandestine'**, a handprinted Indigo coloured light weight fabric. The pattern is like the Kawung pattern in Batik, so it fits nicely with my small collection of cloths.
Can't wait to actually wear it! I'm so happy with it!

Gift wrap with a Batik by Sejauh Maata Memandang***

To wrap this post up, one more thing! I think headwraps are the best gift for under the Christmas tree this season. If you do not want the cloth to be the main gift, use it to wrap the present!
Wrapping gifts, lunches and other important stuff with cloth is called Furoshiki.**** This tradition from Japan is found online in many forms (tons of pretty fabrics) and in many tutorials. Most times they use a square piece, but I think it doesn't really matter if it is used for gift-wrapping What does is that it is a sustainable way to wrap a present, and what is better than wrapping a present with a present!

* More about Di'Xpression on
** Shop Headwraps by the Wrap Life on
*** More about Sejauh Mata Memandang on
**** Furoshiki, a Japanese wrapping cloth,

December 1, 2014

#batik #batikstatement #batikday #batikology #ilovebatik

Photo by Ferry Rusli on "Underwater photo project Batik"

When I posted my "Soon" post, I honestly thought I would get back to blogging soon, but the post just marked the beginning of my roller coaster year. On my site you can see what I was up to this Summer,
I moved my 5 year blog anniversary celebration to 2 October and was happy to get a little Social Media #batikstatement posting going on. Yet real time to really blog about all the cool things I saw and the nice developments in Batik wasn't there yet.
In the mean time I used Google+ to share nice articles I found and started to follow different Batik entrepreneurs, also on Instagram I discovered that Batik is being shared a lot and overrun the catwalk during Jakarta Fashion Week !

Because Blogging is mostly a Googling game, that the readers can later enjoy what we found, I made for you an overview of my Download Folder content. Everyday I check different sites to see what's new about Batik, and I'm a big fan of hashtags on Instagram & Google+! They make it so easy to find nice things on the web!
The images I find, I share, repost and save. In my Download folder they wait patiently to be re-shared in a post on my blog. So here they are! 

I can't promise that I'll be sharing posts more frequently soon, but if the waiting is to long, just check & follow me on Google +,, or Instagram, !

Many thanks & enjoy!

Photo by Ferry Rusli on "Underwater photo project Batik"

Oldy already from Batik Fractal on Google+, but I still love it! They just launched their new autumn/winter collection online, Soon more about their collection here!





 Batik pattern made with coffee, shared on Instagram

Iwan Tirta private collection, lovely website and great posts on Instagram

Interesting Batik project, one handmade design in many different products available. More on, Instagram and hopefully soon here

Love this skirt! Its on my wish-list for sure!

November 8, 2014

Knitting & Tea Towels

Exhibition COHESION at Design Perron

Stand Studio Simul at Klokgebouw

So many colourful things are filling my social media right now: Autumns bright oranges and fruits, last weekends Día de Muertos and catwalk delights from the Jakarta Fashionweek 2015* (please invite me next year!). A bright, patterned feast, which reminds me of every thing I still have to do before winter comes.
First our Dutch Design Week. Last years edition was great with the beautiful exhibition by Vlisco.** This year I decided to give it a bloggers-try, unfortunately I wasn't so lucky. So I paid my ticket and visited for the first time mostly the entrance required locations. How very Dutch of me!

Huge knitting backpack set by YoukbyYouki

Hand dyed and hand knitted towel by Winter in Holland

"Living Colours", oxidation proces on cloth in the presentation by AKV|St.Joost at Klokgebouw

Indigo Cascade by Ernst van der Hoeven, finalist habitat Dutch Design Awards

Knitted meat at the Dutch Design Awards

I prepared a this-is-what-I-want-to-visit plan on the DDW map and managed to do all, AND more! I started of at the Klokgebouw where I collected a lot of business cards. Looking back at the photos I noticed that it kinda had the same feel of what I saw last year**. A lot of dyeing fabrics with natural colouring, using oxidation processes which make for a laboratory-like display. And what do we make of these freshly, rusted fabrics: tea towels. To my surprise I run into a lot of stands with different samples of fabrics and mostly they made cushions and towels. Maybe because you can show the fabric as an usable product, yet keeping a nice square part. Anyway, I don't know if Dutch people have a design relationship with their dishes, but I think it is an interesting choice of product. And since Blokker director Jack Peters said in De Volkskrant last August, "We always had kitchen-textiles, but now we have Kitchen-fashion" explaining the new route the shop was taking, I shouldn't be surprised.

Dutch Darlings by Craft Council Nederland at Klokgebouw

Some "Dutch Darlings"

Voting system 

My favorite

Oven mitts

On my to see-visit plan was the Craft Council Nederland "Dutch Darlings" display. I never heard of this organization before, and I totally missed their "Meet the Master" Staphorst dot folk art workshop. Too bad, but now I'm totally on their mailinglist. What I also missed was their "Dutch Darlings" open call.
Dutch Darlings is an open call for creators, designers and professionals to design an innovative souvenir based on a traditional Dutch craft. Participants show, with their designs, that the Netherlands is more than tulips and windmills. That we have a much richer colour palette of local culture than a Delfts blue wooden clog that is manufactured in China for the tourist industry.***
A very interesting starting point and I was a little disappointed that it were so little products. Yet the display was excellent. A big workshop table with a wooden, bookshelf, open wall around it. Little cabinets with the new souvenirs, below it an abstract symbol of that souvenir on which you could vote and in the bookshelves some more souvenirs and interviews with the 'Masters'.
I placed a dot at the ball of yarn. I liked this locally made, handmade souvenir idea. Because you can make your own product from it afterwards. And because next to Kitchen-fashion (in the competition were also oven mitts, but I didn't find them Dutch enough), knitting is hot, hot, hot!

Yarn shop at Sectie C

Wintervacht wintercoats presentation at Sectie C

Wintervacht Curtain shirt in 2e Hans van Sophie Dekkers set-up

Pretty detail of curtain shirt

After a nice meet with Chris Houtzager of Textile is More****, I headed for Sectie C. I wanted to meet the makers of Wintervacht***** and I never been to that location before. The ladies of Wintervacht weren't their yet, so I first took a look around. Sectie C looks like a factory building that has been taking over by creativity. A lot of small companies, not all very Dutch Design, but better opened, than closed during such an event. Chris told me to check out the yarn shop to check out my theory. There they told me they made the knitted chair. A designer piece showed somewhere else unfortunately (my mother shared it on Facebook and in the same album is a photo of knitting women).
After a while one of the Wintervacht ladies arrived. They shared a space with 2e Hans van Sophie Dekkers. A secondhand clothing shop selected and arranged on colour, texture and patterns. It looked very chic. A lot of people were trying on the coats by Wintervacht and on Instagram it was a very DDW thing to do; post a selfie in a Wintervacht coat. I still didn't try one on, because I want one really bad, but I can't afford one. The mittens how ever...but they didn't bring them with...
I asked them if they could inform me of their upcoming Summer collection. Because I loved their curtain collection this year. They buy secondhand curtains and make a nice two piece, shirt & short pants, outfit from it. Very pattern-hip and recycle-proof!

Looking forward to what the young Wintervacht ladies are going to do next and lets see if I can become a proper DDW blogger next year!

* More about the Jakarta Fashionweek 2015 on their site
** Blogpost about "Vlisco Unfolded" and Dutch Design Week 2013 "Natural Dye + Wax Print + Sweaters"
*** Read more about the Craft Council NL and their Dutch Darlings on
- More about Staphorst dot folk art in my previous post "Traditional costumes in modern living
**** Textile is More is a new, fresh look on textiles all over the globe, put into a blog, on which I'm going to participate soon,
***** Post on my blog about Wintervacht "Transhumance"
More about Wintervacht on

October 19, 2014

MUD at Domain Oogenlust

 Bogolan by Boubacar Doumbia and huge photo by Serge Hagemeie at MUD

Yesterday I went to the opening day of MUD, a program during the Dutch Design Week, which is about fashion, architecture & design from and inspired by Mali full of Bogolan and wax prints.
The wide ranged MUD program with workshops, masterclasses and fashion-shows is not only to show the beauty and interesting things being created in Mali, it is also to collected money to build a Crafts & Design school in Mali.* So enjoying creativity while supporting it!

MUD is located at Domain Oogenlust, a surprisingly designed location in Eersel, nearby Eindhoven. Stichting Djenné and Oogenlust combined forces to make MUD into a feast for the eyes. Huge photos of models in specially created outfits made with bogolan textiles and hairpieces from organic materials fill the space. At the entrance is a shop full of items made with Julius Holland Wax fabrics and clothing & furniture by Boutique d'Afrique. In the main hall a small exhibition is made by the National Museum of Ethnology (Rijksmuseum Volkenkunde) about "Brabants Bont in Africa", next to architectural designer Cheick Diallo' s furniture. 

Chair by Cheick Diallo

I had the chance to talk with Cheick Diallo about his contribution to MUD.  This year Diallo won the Africa Design Award in Cape Town, South Africa. Diallo studied in Paris, but designs in Mali nowadays. The furniture he shows at MUD, and everything he designed is made in Mali. He is a strong supporter of Stichting Djenné plan to built a Crafts & Design school in Mali. His furniture now is made by people who have not studied for it, but in whom Diallo sees a connection and quality. With the Crafts & Design school he can even help more people to grow and learn, and he will be working as a teacher on the school himself. 

Furniture by Cheick Diallo

Photo by Serge Hagemeie at MUD

Chairs by Salon d' Afrique

Chair by Salon d' Afrique with 'Money Flies' Vlisco

Lampshades by Salon d' Afrique

Bogolans by Boubacar Doumbia

Tonight, Friday and Sunday a fashion-show is held at MUD with fashion made by designers from Mali and the Netherlands made with bogolans & wax prints finished of with hairpieces by Oogenlust. 
I saw the show last night and was amazed by it. The clothing was all of very high quality and I saw so many things I wanted to have (in a little bigger size). The fashion show is made in collaboration with the Ethical Fashion Initiative. The EFI connects the fashion business with artisans in Africa and Haiti, more about that in this video!

Happy designers, Reuben Reul, Netty Anang and Klekleli Dzidzienyo

I loved all the different fashion shows, but for this post I will only share the first part of it. Because I think you should go and see the show for yourself! But also because these fashion items are all made with Bogolan. 
Stichting Djenné invited different designers to contribute by designing something new using Bogolan.** The results are very nice, modern, chic and I want them all (*smile*blink*).
Bogolan is a handmade Malian cotton fabric traditionally dyed with fermented mud. The natural, earth colored cloth has a high graphic quality. At Domain Oogenlust you can see some full length cloths and also at the end of the week follow a workshop by Boubacar Doumbia.***
Added the names of designers I know for sure, if you know which design is made by whom, just let me know, thanks!

Enjoy a small part of the must-see fashionshow & make sure to visit MUD!!

Designer By Borre

Designer Daniela Pias

Designer Daisy van Groningen

* More information on the Stichting Djenné site,
** Bogolan on Wikipedia 
*** Master Classes Bogolan painting by Boubacar Doumbia