January 23, 2017

Indonesian streetwear brand, Dominate launched in 2013. A menswear brand that specialties in military cuts, Dominate creates technical outerwear pieces, balancing function and form. We caught up with the team to talk about the influence of Jakarta’s subcultures on their designs, the creative process and plans for 2017.

UO: Can you tell us a little about the story of Dominate so far?

Dominate was born in Indonesia’s capital, Jakarta at the end of 2013. We’re a group of friends who came from south Jakarta and at first we started Dominate for fun, we just wanted to share our view about our philosophy and make tangible things out of it. It grew organically from there.

UO: How do you think Dominate has been impacted creatively from being born out of Jakarta?

Definitely! We’re surrounded by Jakarta’s subcultures, and it really reflects our lifestyle. Jakarta shaped us as people and as a brand. If you’ve been to Jakarta you will feel that raw energy and the vibes, it’s different to other major cities in the world, it’s really chaotic, but it has its own beauty.

UO: What does a typical day at Dominate HQ look like?

Nothing fancy, depending on the timeline of our production, we usually start the day after lunch, then shopping for fabrics and hardware, after that we usually have a meeting with our pattern maker and continue to oversee production. At night, we usually end the day by hanging out with our friends.

UO: What is the design process like at Dominate?

We start each season with collecting moodboards, looks, fabric samples, and hardware. We then have endless meetings and brainstorming sessions for the season foundation idea, and then make a specific interpretation about the collection. After that, we proceed to create a collection for each of the pieces.

UO: What is more important – form or function?

Definitely function, the basis for our design is function, fit and fabrication. One of our mantras is ‘form follows function’, when we review design or samples before they hit the production.

UO: What makes Dominate different from other menswear brands?

We’re not pushing ourselves to be different from other menswear brands, we do not really think about it, we just do what we like, representing our vision and philosophical message trough Dominate.

UO: What is your favourite Dominate piece from the latest collection and why?

It would be the Dominate 4 pocket trooper jacket; the basic idea is adding an experimental twist towards the classic M-51 field jacket. We’ve changed the fit and fabrication to be used everyday in urban areas, and added a panel of contrasting mixed material. This jacket is one of our ideas about experimental garments.

UO: How do you approach piecing together a collection?

We always visualise the looks that we want to achieve before we start a design; it can really help us in bringing together all pieces of our collection. It’s a fundamental base on our production, we always think about how each article can stand out, but can still be mixed well with the other articles.

UO: What sort of materials and textiles do you like to work with most and why?

Cotton twill and nylon. We love mixing these fabrics, because the result is unpredictable and gives a twisted look.

UO: What inspires you during the creative process?

The Jakarta subculture that surrounds us, our lifestyle, the music that we listen to everyday, the books that we read, and some of our favorite classic movies like Apocalypse Now, Taxi Driver and Easy Rider.

UO: How would you describe the style of Dominate in just three words?

Experimental garment design.

UO: What is the most rewarding aspect of your job?

We love the total freedom we have to reflect our ideas through our creations and the appreciation we get from our customers who always give us support.

UO: What can we expect to see from Dominate in 2017?

We will be growing the range of our article collection and exploring with some experimental articles that represent Dominate’s DNA.