Alta Moda Sarawak to promote state through fashion, lifestyles

Esther presenting a souvenir to Abdul Karim. Also seen (from right) are Renee, Raymond, Cecelia and Angelina.

By Karen Bong

KUCHING, Feb 12: The upcoming Alta Moda Sarawak (AMS), a fashion and lifestyle showcase, can become a catalyst to help woo more tourists to the state.

Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sports Datuk Abdul Rahman Karim Hamzah opined that AMS had the potential to become a brand platform for Sarawak’s designers to showcase their talents and creations to the world.

“AMS will not only become a fashion showcase but it also serves as a lifestyle event. Fashion, I believe, is a form of universal language,” he told a press conference on AMS 2019 at Restaurant Budaya, Kuching Waterfront, here today.

The inaugural AMS 2019 will be held from March 7 to 9 at the Old State Legislative Assembly (DUN) building to highlight Sarawak’s cultures and diversities through fashion.

Another objective of the event is to provide up-and-coming local designers with the opportunity to make their mark in their own country rather than having to go abroad to make a name for themselves.

It also aims to give local fashion followers the chance to have ‘high fashion at their doorstep’.

Abdul Karim (seated third from left) flanked by Esther on his left in a group photo with the designers, models and their creations.

Abdul Karim noted that the organisers of AMS were confident that the designers involved would be able to establish themselves as fashion and lifestyle brands and help catapult the state’s fashion industry.

“This development will, in turn, attract more tourist traffic into Sarawak and create demand for a growing domestic industry among talented artisans and skilful bead craftsmen,” he said of the multi-billion dollar fashion industry globally.

He urged designers to find inspirations from the state’s diverse ethnic groups and unique heritage and incorporate ethnic and tribal motifs into their designs.

Abdul Karim commended local designers whose meteoric rise was something to be proud of. They include names like Paul Carling, Anna Sue, Ben Nazry, Melinda Omar, Sereni & Shentel, and Latip’s Collection.

“I am confident that AMS will become a successful yearly event to promote Sarawak as a leading fashion hub in Asean and beyond, attracting potential tourism and merchandise buyers domestically and internationally in support of our Sarawakian designers and artists,” he said.

A fashion model modelling an elegant gown by a local fashion designer.

Earlier, AMS chair Datin Esther Balan elaborated that Alta Moda originates from the Italian language, which means ‘high fashion’, where all potential and leading couturiers, designers and labels will be looking forward and to be gathered under one roof.

“We are excited to be holding this event in conjunction with Visit Sarawak Campaign with support and partnership from the Ministry of Tourism Sarawak and Sarawak Tourism Board (STB),” she said.

STB Events and Corporate Relations director Angeline Patricia Bateman, the Ministry’s Event Units head Cecelia Senja, AMS managing director Dato Raymond Valentine and AMS director Renee Bugo were present. — DayakDaily