Celebrating the divine feminine, my batik inspired prints, romantic colour palettes and vintage cuts, inspire bold, effortless garments designed for free-spirited sisters.
I am Jill Kartini, Designer and Director of KARTINI The Label. I live on a small island Gili Air, located off the coast of Lombok – right next door to Bali, Indonesia with my husband Jimi and our 2 babes Javier & Indah. We have been lucky enough to call this beautiful island home for 10 years now – we met here, fell in love here, built our house and businesses here, and now we are raising our family here. I started KARTINI right about the time we were married in 2014 and were just finding our feet on the island.
KARTINI The Label was borne out of my desire to create swimwear and effortless garments that suited island life but that I could also take on my travels home to Australia and around the world – and my love affair with Indonesian batik. This centuries old artistic tradition is at the heart of all my designs.
I am Australian-Indonesian and I grew up in a household full of textiles from around the world, particularly batik that my Mum collected during her travels to Bali and Sumatra, and pieces from my Dad and his family. I followed in my Mum’s footsteps and began collecting batik on my travels across Indonesia. I love the detailed intricacy of hand drawn and stamped batik that can take weeks to make.
Kartini is my middle name, given to me by my mother. She chose it because Raden Ajeng Kartini, was a strong and brave Javanese woman, an advocate for girls’ access to education, and for Indonesian women’s rights during the Dutch colonial era. She is celebrated today as a pioneer in the women’s movement of Indonesia. I have always loved the name, and Kartini’s story. I wanted a name for my designs that represented female strength, which I believe, embodies the KARTINI label.
In creating garments for Kartini The Label, I work with some amazing women across two ethically run, family owned garment studios in Bali, Indonesia. They are both small businesses and both are run by women. Working with these kind of creators is important to me.
The textile industry leaves one of the largest water footprints on the planet – as it consumes a substantial amount of water in its manufacturing processes, used mainly in dyeing and finishing processes. The wastewater from textile plants is classified as the most polluting of all the industrial sectors, considering the volume generated as well as the effluent composition. The increased demand for textile products, the increase in their production, and the use of synthetic dyes have together contributed to dye wastewater becoming one of the most significant sources of pollution to the world’s waterways.
The industry’s challenge is to adopt more water-friendly technologies. Enter sublimation dyeing – an environmentally conscious design process that is 100% waterless and low waste.
KARTINI uses sublimation dyeing for all patterned swimwear designs.
In this method, heat-activated dyes are used to transfer prints from the source to textile by the process of sublimation. Sublimation basically refers to the passage of molecules from the solid to gas state, without moving through a liquid state. During the printing process, heat is applied to sublimation dyes, to directly convert them into gaseous form. Simultaneously, the dye makes contact with a material, like elastane. Upon exposure to heat, the cloth fibres open, allowing the dyes to permeate into the fibre and bond with it permanently. The prints are therefore transferred from the source to the textile. All that is needed to permanently fix the colour is heat.
The result? One of a kind prints that do not fade, minimal waste and no harm done to our waterways!