Bali is one of those places you cannot come to without being inspired by colour and the tropics. After a few visits, my mind was buzzing with ideas for starting something that involved working with the gorgeous fabrics on offer here. After dabbling in cushions, ladieswear and bags, we decided our calling was to make clothes for girls who love adventures under the sun.
As parents of three boys, we often get funny looks when I tell people we have a girls wear brand. The reason why we chose girls wear is simple : we are more inspired by gorgeous tropical prints for girls wear. We love the flow of our kaftans and the swirl of our dresses! Whilst we have bought out some tropical-inspired boys clothing, our main focus is still on pieces for girls.
‘Melatiku spends her days in and out of the sea.’
When we started to create our brand, Melatiku became alive. She spends her days in and out of the sea creating imaginary worlds where she fights pirates, swims with mermaids, and befriends sea creatures. She is independent, creative and amazing at climbing trees. With encouragement, she will become a future leader able to be a strong role model for her peers.
‘She knows her own style and likes to wear comfortable, yet bold clothes which are easy to put on after a dip in the sea.’
With these ideas in mind, we decided to make our dreams a reality. Finding a good team of artisans took us about 3 years, as we had to battle through cultural differences re. Deadline and quality. Even though the founder of Melatiku is Indonesian, communicating our need for high quality was often difficult. But being true to our brand and our mission for Melatiku we kept searching. Now we work with a mix of home industries in Bali , and employees in a small factory in Java.
‘Without our artisans, there would be no Melatiku’
The relationships we have built are of mutual respect. We understand that without our artisans, there would be no Melatiku. Our team are mostly from the area of Sunda in Java, which is known for its garment production. We pay per garment and the price is set by our artisans. They have so much expertise and often advise us on fabrics, techniques and finishing. All of our artisans have families to support and we help where we can. For example, sponsoring schooling to make sure all children in our families go to school. We also contribute towards funerals and hospital bills when needed.
‘Melatiku can pass on her beloved pieces.’
Sustainability is very important to us and we want to be a good role model for the next generation. We are currently cutting down on plastic by sending out items in a reusable natural cotton bag. We make our clothing with adjustable straps and elasticated sections so they can be worn for more than one Summer, and our high quality craftsmanship means our Melatikus can pass their beloved pieces to younger siblings or friends.
For us the future is all about growing our presence as a brand which stands out from the rest. We are also working hard to create a sense of community among our Melatiku mammas. We have been busy recently with our production agency which allows designers to work with our team and create their our designer dreams.