Fashion scene in Pakistan needs a bit of a rejuvenation since the designers are producing a lot of same ol same ol. Designers need to understand that people are going to wear with what options they are presented with and thus need to reassess what their presentations are consisting of. Innovation, creativity and commerce all need to come together. While some made a splash at this season”s Fashion Pakistan Week 2017, some failed to do so.
While I am in Karachi on vacations, admist attending collection exhibitions and store openings, INAAYA‘s exhibit does come in for a refreshing change from all that. Inaaya’s Naushaba Brohi, prides in the use of craft within her collection. The basic notion of the brand lies on the fact that it elevates the use of craft within the contemporary arena.
What I liked about Brohi’s approach is the value she asserts towards these crafts is something that I, being a textile and a craft lover and enthusiast personally feel and resonate with. Infact one of my master’s project was based on tensions between craft and modernity, a fine balance that Naushaba brohi seems to have struck. Her latest venture, wherein she took accessories made under her brand INAAYA from stores within an art space is one such step in her efforts to do so. Kind of reminds me of Issey Miyake who tends to showcase his pieces within art spaces and as installation, apart from fashion shows, blurring those lines between how fashion should be presented.
Can only do so much
High street brand like Levis while introducing its products does not veer away from what it is. Even bringing on stylists like Rana and Ayaz, who can only do so much, Introducing yet another denim, Levis kept the look and feel of the show their usual self. Read the rest of this entry »
Inaaya by Naushaba Brohi has already grabbed eyeballs since past two years ever since it started retailing at multi brand stores. Contemporary design philosophy combined with the motive of being made by women with crafted skills, Inaaya champions the fashion with a cause and wears the label out and proud. Making it’s debut on the ramp, it was one of the brands who’s showing I went to with pretty much an open mind expecting the usual overdone abused use of craft person’s skills. What I came out with was being pleasantly surprised and appreciative of the fact that someone is not resorting to the usual. This was probably the best debut I had seen in years.
Inaaya’s collection titled LIMINAL wandered over the concept of blurred lines of between black and white of life, the grey unsure areas between right and wrong. As she describes it ‘Grey is the realm of possibilities. It’s a political prescription – to let go of the blacks and whites, of dogmatic convictions, of the insistence on territorial claims on rightness and projections of wrongness. Grey is the space in between which mandates change as it ruptures constancy, and destabilizes permanence.’ Where Inaaya’s philosophy is minimal, it’s immense use of the craft techniques of embroidery sans the usual riot of colors (so so glad she chose to do so) makes it stand apart from all. The color palate of the collection wandered in realms of black, whites, greys and beiges. While she worked with majorly with ralli along with other embroidery techniques, she made sure her proportions of quantity are aesthetically balanced. Styled brilliantly with extra long braids, and handmade necklaces, contrasting against monotones, the collection was thoughtful and chic without confirming to the usual craft induced apparel that we see.
Working with fabrics like net, chiffon and cottons as well I did also spot KHES, Inaaya’s collection just not only relies on the vernacular crafts, but the design philosophy of Naushaba brohi to channel these crafts in a direction that it is able to compete in the contemporary market. She makes sure she does not over do it, stopping right where it is needed. Using the techniques, she manages to strike a balance between surface treatment and silhouettes. The silhouettes ranged from net layered ponchos, dresses, a brilliant black and white jumpsuit etc making up a wide array of separates (loved those baggy jodhpurish chooridaar pants) that can be worn easily and styled well without making them look costumey. Also to applaud was the fact that the transition from one piece to another was so seamless that it left us wanting for more. (I now secretly wish she ventures into menswear). I also loved this pair of lace layered loafers that were paired with the baggy churidaar.
The presentation was visually good with models sashaying down the ramp to the tunes of Nadia by Nitin Sawhney. See the show below
All ‘craft revivalists’ out there… this is how it is DONE. Take a bow Ms. Brohi.
*Images courtesy Tapu Javeri and his team
Video Credits: Ahsan R. Shami