The second fashion week of the season, The fashion week from Lahore had quite a few interesting collection that did explore the fun and business sides of fashion. The collections both by debutantes and established designers definitely had people sit up and take notice how pret is evolving within fashion. While there were a few that stuck to the formulaic commercialism, others did dare to venture out, pushing the envelope and making a damn point.
Mish Mash Mess
Fnkasia’s folk spirit collection left me a bit on the odds as to what to make of the collection that was presented down the runway. The opening horizontal striped number spelled disaster and set the possible tone for the collection that mish mashed so many strange elements together that it was hard to pin down the coherent thread. The collection titled folk spirit became disaster of quite epic proportions with use of some perforated materials, coupled with some dramatic accessories that were not needed in many places. The badly fitted blue maxi number, the odd first number and the dated yellow silhouette managed to bring things down quite a few notches. The blue knotted number with embellished tights and the last OTT number possibly hit the final nail in the coffin. Serious editing and quite the amount of control needed to be exercised by the designer since there was much too mish mash of so many things from elements of pret to wanting to go the high end route. Quite the disappointment for a fashion house who’s last two outings, esp the bengali one (yes I still remember that and it was more than a year ago) was quite a fresh take. The collection though had a two high points in the shape of the draped and belted yellow and monochromatic number and the black dress with a lace cape (but it was marred by the chunky accessory that it could do without). Ethnic legwarmers were another welcome addition and I did spot an interesting shalwar. Huma! we have seen you present way better stuff than this, esp for winterwear.
Designers Deepak and Fahad went the monochromatic way with their latest collection simply Siyah Sufaid. The collection that presented an array of menswear and womenswear was not without its share of hits and misses. While the menswear fared better than womenswear, the designers did display some serious potential and the ways in which they can take this forward. While they presented a number of fun jackets quilted and printed within menswear, the womenswear saw one breezy number and the rest on the structured end with dresses, gowns and jumpsuit. The black and white collection made quite a few people sit up and take notice of the duo, since they have gradually managed to improve with each passing presentation and learnt from it. This collection however it was not without faults. One of the leather jackets seemed like an odd intrusion in the whole presentation and stuck out. The white printed suit number also needed some serious alterations since the pants looked more like PJs and the last gown could have been better fitted. However not all was lost in the process and they did present a few some pretty interesting pieces. My picks had to be the quilted jacket, the printed sleeve shirt paired with that bandhgala nehru vest, the fading mini number and the jumpsuit with an embroidered bolero that scored high. All eyes would definitely be on them with what they come up with next.
Lets just take a moment and sit and go through the whole collection of what Mr Pardesy presented on the runway possibly peaking day 2 with his collection titled Labyrinth. Breathe In and Breathe Out. The monochromatic collection with a multitude of inspirations was perfectly balanced outing with the display of his love for craft and deconstruction of it. The collection was one helluva ride that, as expected, was one we did not want to end.
Possibly his most retail friendly silhouettes, Pardesy’s collection was not absent or compromising of his penchant for details of various crafts that included deconstructed weaving to embroidery to greek imagery. The collection was meticulously crafted, one that was obvious so much so the created an entire top out of weaving strips and that too patterned… *applause*.. that my dear is not an easy feat and that is the effort this perfectionist puts into his craft and excels at it. Apart from that, Pardesy combined a multitude of prints as well as embroidered images so fine that they were mistaken for print by some of the onlookers, unless given a second look. These combined with prints and brilliant mastered tailoring (not a thread out of place), Pardesy’s collection was chic, relaxed and fab. His experimentation with some of the silhouettes was remarkable while the control he exercised in others was pitch perfect. The menswear he presented, the black and white sherwani is bound to find takers *raises hand*. It is amazing to see how far Adnan Pardesy is willing to push the envelope every time he is to present, be it the gota enriched gilded collection or the denim one, the ralli inspired one or the summer sorbet that he presented. He just pushes those boundaries and loves doing so in his attempt to experiment with womenswear. Thank God he is not satisfied and I hope he never is, for then he can continue to seek excellence every time he has to present. Killed it man!!
Kukkar Kamaal Da!!
For all the reasons I just had to title the review of Deepak’s collection this… because .. those who understood it definitely got it :P. The collection ‘Everything but the girl’ was just that, nothing but Menswear. Deepak’s collection presented a variety of menswear with some interesting silhouettes for the Pakistani man who is a bit conservative to experiment much. However with Perwani’s collection there was pretty much everything for everyone. From suits to bandhgalas to nehru jackets to long coats to cheeky ‘rooster’ printed kurtas and pants (loved them, they instantly went onto my lust list) to some very interesting jodhpurs, the collection presented quite the range with embroidered and belted accents onto them. While one of the jackets with its OTT embroidery did take me back to the 90s, *shudders with horror with the reminder of what put me off embroidery*, thankfully only one such piece made an appearance. The collection also presented a belted sherwani and a bandhgala which made for an interesting styling choice. From OTT to minimal, the collection pretty much had it all and that is where possibly it seemed a bit inconsistent at points. The dip dye shirts and rooster prints (though my favs) as well as casual outings and coats seemed disconnected at points to formal suits and sherwanis presented by the designer. However the designer managed to maintain the whole vibe of the show and round it off before it had the tendency to go astray. Sikander Rizvi and Adnan Malik made for suave showstoppers and set quite a few swooning over them (trust me you should have seen my timeline during that moment).
*Images courtesy Tapu Javeri and his team
For the fourth and final day, I went all out with an Adnan Pardesy gota jacket from his EXIMIUS collection from FPW. Having it all about the jacket and have it literally shine (no puns intended), I toned down the rest of the look to black on black so as to compliment the midnight blue of the gota. The gota jacket painstakingly crafted was one of my favorite pieces I wore during these four days. The texture…like I said in my review too.. was just soo pretty. Whats more is that the collection is available for retail at Labels. Got in a nice cotton basic button down and the cotton denim blend skinny pants from my go to brand Denizen. I just had to have some pop of fun color (can’t help myself) and that came via the yellow socks. I cuffed my pants into a single thin cuff for it to play just enough peek a boo while I walked. I finally got the chance to take out these shoes for a spin. I was gifted these babies by a friend on my birthday and was looking for a perfect occasion to flaunt em off. The suede wingtips with a worn out feel at the toes from Pedro went perfectly with the whole look. Loved Them… and did I mention they were comfy. Added in a necklace and hand band just for a lil something extra! A shout out to attire club for helping me with the looks.
*Images courtesy Mutahir Mahmood and Aqsa Razzak
Before I go on any further, the fashion film by Nubain deserves some attention that he did for Adnan Pardesy.
Gota, for those who don’t know, is a term applied to a ribbon that is woven with metal threads (not anymore) and threads. These ribbons are then shaped and used with an applique embroidery technique usually on edges, creating elaborate patterns.
After the last showing’s hiccup, Adnan more that redeemed himself through his latest outing. When a couturier like Adnan pardesy claims to use something as traditional as gota (did a preview piece on him), you are bound to sit up to see what he comes up with. With his constructional techniques, combined with gota, which is so not easy to use Adnan modulated GOTA according to his textural needs creating visually enthralling ensembles that one at best is left in awe of its effect.
Fabric manipulation and texturization has become Adnan Pardesy’s and he keeps us wondering everytime what would he come up with next pushing himself within his design aesthetic realm. Adnan’s latest offering EXIMIUS, like its name was nothing short of excellence with meticulously worked details of GOTA that were twisted, turned, pleated and stitched down in rows of design that formed the texture on the ensembles. One could not see the base fabric with GOTA built upon it stitch by stitch. The array of silhouettes that included jackets, dresses and pants were combined with solids of contrasts, with whites, blues and blacks were done intelligently. For the finale piece he also threw in two eastern ensembles that were worked in a traditional manner but with his signature manipulated GOTA.
The GOTA colors ranged from goldens, reds, navys, blacks, bronzes, silver and gun metal (my favorite) ones. The visual rich effect that he achieved with clothes without making them heavy (the handwork that we are used to) while still maintaining their easiness of being able to be worn easily was a brilliant masterstroke.
Though the ensembles involving red gota were the weak links, but did not take away from the whole collection and the masterful construction that Mr. Pardesy employed.
On the third day I saw the gun metal jacket backstage, worn by Nubain and it was soo pretty!! (sorry I just get excited) and so well meticulously done that all I could do is appreciate the craftsmanship. Ah! how I wish I could afford couture. The golden dress was my another pick that was done in two different shades and a curved design with different textural techniques. Also the ensemble of two different silvers, gun metal and silver also was another favorite. The bronze menswear jacket was another badass couture that made it to my favorites list.
Take a bow Mr. Pardesy, you redefined our definition of gota. Bravo!!
*Images courtesy Tapu Javeri and his team… and some of the shots are by me 🙂
When you think of Adnan Pardesy and the variety of collection that he has shown, the one fact that one tends to notice in the impressive repertoire is impeccable construction and fit. Even the harshest of his critics rave about his impeccable construction, fit and brilliantly done fabric manipulation that does not crutch upon the use of embroidery or handwork (barring the last collection). A signature is developed when one tends to repeat certain quirks and techniques and present them differently everytime around so as to keep the audience guessing what he would come up with next. Adnan Pardesy’s love for geometry, fabric manipulation techniques, penchant for couture details is predominant in his aesthetic and one we look forward to every time he is about to show.
His next collection titled EXIMIUS (Latin, which means excellent, fine, superb, extraordinary) is all set to showcase at FPW6. What is surprising is that for his collection, instead of looking out, he seemed to have looked within the country and the culture of using GOTA in the collection. Now GOTA is usually a gold adornment that has been used to adorn and ornament the clothes of this part of subcontinent for centuries. For someone like Adnan Pardesy to use his, popularly termed, ‘western’ aesthetic to give something as traditional as GOTA, a new-age twist would be definitely one collection that is worth keeping a look out for. Applying his constructional techniques that he is known for, it would be one brilliant collection if he manages to pulls this out of the hat successfully. With jackets, skirts and boleros, all adorned with GOTA, this collection is one that I am definitely waiting
MK NATION by Karma
Maheen Kardar presented her sub brand’s MK Nation’s collection in the High Street segment on last day of PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week. Her Ode to Lahore included fun prints and embroideries. Taking inspiration from her city, Maheen Kardar’s collection comprised of kurtas, loose and shorter tunics, capris, bloused tops and jumpsuits. The motif vocab ranged from minar e pakistan, noor jehan to vintage telephone and phulkari motifs. The most popular one had to be the Imran Khan kurta that she showed, right on the verge of elections. While I was on the fence about some of the longer shirts, a couple of straight tunics with their length seemed bit off when paired with palazzos. I totally loved the fact that she accessorized her garments with the jhola/snake bags. A very nice and cute collection overall but wished there was an effort to push the silhouette while staying in the parameters of high street. My picks were the khussa print, the navy blue jumpsuit, the oversized red top paired with black and white polka dotted pants and the dark green top.
Coco by Zara Shahjahan presented second during the High street shows. Basing her collection in cottons for summers, Zara’s collection had floral embroidery in almost every garment that walked down the runway, showing off her affinity towards the floral patterns that formed her inspiration. Straighter and shorter tunics ruled her shows with basic white lowers except for two floral printed ones. Interesting silhouettes and variations of a shirt were seen apart from the dolmen sleeves and overlapped tunics. Furthermore vents within some tunics were an interesting added feature easing the movement. Working that color block in her design, it was however her whites that made much more of an impact than her colors. The reason lied in the pastel almost washed out tone of the color that she used, that became her undoing. Also as a designer one needs to take care of how the embroidery or embellishment falls on the body. I had two major moments where the behind of the models was literally framed and highlighted due to the effect. Had some very good potential sellers.
Kesariya, after its lawn show at PFDC (which I skipped), showed off their pret line in the high street segment of the Fashion Week. Playing upon three distinct inspirations, Kesariya showed a sort of teaser, what can be expected in their stores almost every week. The three capsule collections were made in cotton lawn, cotton swiss, cotton karandi and chiffon silk. While with their Virsa line, the brand took on the major trend that one has seen through the week, truckart. Fusing it with oriental influences, we get kimono inspired tops, Japanese sleeves and straighter shirts with truck art prints. While there was a slight hiccup (even Kesariya could not escape the curse of ending-on-crotch embroidery), the dramatic piece, which my guess is was for runway only with voluminous sleeves, though a bit costumey, showed how they know how to have fun with fashion. The Riwayat line played on with the cultures of subcontinent featuring in a multitude of colors. The silhouettes were flared and loose tunics for everyday wear. The Kontemporary segment played upon with blacks, whites and grey with colored accents. Chic silhouettes and a couple of Op-art print tops, worked brilliantly. Loved the black and white square top with a butterfly hidden in the pattern was one of my fav from this collection. While not seamless, the three lines made for a pretty presentation. Waleed Zaman, as usual, rocked colored pants, this time a two colored trouser on the runway (MAJOR ENVY, more than the collection he should produce these pants and have them at their leisure club store)
WORKING WOMEN by Adnan Pardesy
Chic, fun and wearable are the words that come to one’s mind when describing the WORKING WOMAN by Adnan Pardesy’s collection. Also an offshoot of Bareeze (first being Kesariya), the collection titled INCLINED, definitely checked all boxes for the working women. Displaying his signatures of structures and fabric manipulations (in limited doses), the collection comprised of solid colored tunics that were hip, trendy and on the mark for the working women of Pakistan. Hoping to be in stores, the simple yet practical designs showed that he had fun designing for this collection. Flared with with asymmetrical hemlines , straight as well as draped tunics along with a couple of jumpsuits that were presented during the show. The pleating detail and neat presentation helped the collection shine through. Accessorized by various office gear and bags, the collection scored points by the working women, who ever I showed the collection.
*Images courtesy Faisal Farooqui and his team at Dragonfly
A far cry from what we know know of Mr. Pardesy, Ellipses, was his venture into the bling territory. While some may applaud on Adnan Pardesy’s attempt to try something new, others may frown upon him to abandon his self in an attempt to commercialize. While personally for me, treading on new territories comes with the risk and while the collection was not really upto his usual mark, I would give it to him to experiment rather than falling off into stagnancy.
Using a dark toned palette, Pardey’s collection had gowns and cocktail dresses, boleros and capes in his presentation. While he did use the traditional hand embroidery materials in the contemporary way, case in being the checkerboard optical illusion LBD and the embroidery on the brown jacket, we certainly missed his fine fabric detailing, which he displayed in one of the maroon jackets.
The jewellery done by Maliha Shaikh deserves special mention, because it was bang on according to Pardesy’s tastes and was contemporary and edgy at the same time. My pick from the collection has to be the checkerboard LBD. Furthermore from jewellery, I have my eyes set on the cuffs that adorned the model’s hands.
*Image courtesy Faisal Farooqui and his team at Dragonfly