It is that time of the year that we look back on the past year to see who made an impact on fashion, who set trends and who aced it in terms of costumes in movies in Bollywood. From fabulously styled to chameleon character looks transforming the actors, this year Bollywood dabbled in both regional and contemporary themes with its costumes within movies. From looking fab to getting down and dirty, the hindi movies explored it all in a range of movies. While there were many like Neerja and Dangal where the costume meshed so well with the character that you hardly notice it (the best thing a costume designer Read the rest of this entry »
Day 2 saw another slew of designers putting forth a show for the evening. Of these only two came up trumps by staying true to their aesthetics. While we saw many bridals, a couple of brands also showcased pret a porter for the wedding season giving the much needed break from the usual desi wedding options.
Do yourself a favor and just look at the collection…
There is a reason I am a fan of Sabyasachi’s much more contemporary looks and interpretations and Sabyasachi’s pret line Sabyasachi by Sabyasachi is a testament to that why. This people is what looks like a retro boho chic collection done right to pitch perfection looks like. Sabyasachi opened the Lakme fashion week with a bang that only he can. The scale, the setting at the mill and the disco laser lights all contributed to a somewhat an epic saga to the seventies.
The boho luxe collection was one of the best I have seen from the man and one can see why. The striped crop tops, the floral prints, the full skirts, the jumpsuits,even the menswear all came together for a seventies collection that paid ode to the bollywood queens of seventies Parveen Babi and Zeenat aman. The slinky sequined dresses, the floaty boho dresses, print-on-print flared pants and shirts, crystallized louche tunics, the bling was definitely on a high note playing tribute to the nightclubs and party scene of the seventies. The leather belts with lion motif on saris and dresses, the retro shades, the slick back hair, the collection that was styled to perfection also threw in a couple of sporty references within with numbered dresses that surprisingly did not look out of place (and reminded me of Tom Ford). The print on print menswear was one I have been lusting after since last season and this year he amped up the quotient with suits, bandhgalas, waistcoats worn over print on print churidar and tunic (I have tried that but not with the same prints). Many (read each) piece was bang on nailed perfectly and added to the whole colllection be it the basic seperates of the whole dress. One of the black dresses with red lining and paired up with printed pants, the gold shoes and accenting shoes on men, the mint green sequined dress are definitely worth the mention. The half and half pants, the fiery red floral pieces all just were literally effing good. Though I hated the slipper effect on men but just a minor glitch. Aiming at the younger audience, this has to be Sabyasachi’s most commercial pret collection ever.
While I still do miss the artsy Sabya from the heydays of his Frida Kahlo sensibilities, (it is still there), fashion ultimately is a business and he has grown as a designer by leaps and bounds becoming a movement towards textiles within his own right. While this collection is more closer to his earlier works than his traditional couture endeavors, one would definitely make comparasions. But obviously the evolution is going to spill over to the artsy him but the amalgamation of the two is what was presented here. Even within his va va voom glam outing there is a certain quirk of sensibilities that does shine through (more so than his recent outings) and that is what I was so happy about!! the return of the earlier Sabyasachi.
And even more why I love the collection, check out the Harpers Bazaar Shoot by Tarun Khiwal
*Show Images by Sagar Ahuja
Fierce Fab Fitch
Shehla Chatoor’s Misaki ticked off most of the right notes with her signature luxury aesthetic coming into play within the collection that drew inspiration from japanese folding screens, murals and samurai. The collection though had a bit of a Balmain (another designer who needs to be left alone after DnG) deja vu in terms of similar rope techniques and was hard to ignore, Shehla brought more than that to the table in a collection that was fierce and definitely not for the faint hearted.
The collection apart from the rope twistings, heavily employed lasercut leather that was cut, twisted and woven into the garments, along with that she brought forth some chic ensembles incorporating japanese prints so well that it is safe to say she was actually better than reigning princess of print Sania Maskatiya’s Sakura outing earlier this year at Lakme fashion week. The digital prints were controlled and served up in some serious sultry luxe treatments that everyone would want to get a hold of one in their closet. Shehla Chatoor along with employing all these techniques never lost sight of her usual glam aesthetic that was omnipresent throughout the collection. Her silhouettes ranged from full length skirts, gowns, saris, jackets, seperates and jumpsuits. Loved the set of three different silhouettes all with a single leather slashed sleeve that she sent out in black. That woven top made in leather for that sari…epic..for someone who knows weaving and that technique… its not easy to pull off. The collection is sure to be picked up by celebs for red carpet as well as women who are her regular clientele. A minor gripe was the sporty ensemble that she sent out in black. In a collection that depended a lot of fierce femininity with a charm, that sporty ensemble stuck out… but just a minor gripe. I loved almost everything. My absolute favorites had to be the chic button down with printed skirt with a box clutch… was a perfect example of laid back fiery luxe ensemble, the leather top with one sleeve with black printed skirt and the opening number. Brownie points to the brave styling that complimented the clothes to a T.
State of Stagnant affair
Emraan Rajput’s take on military faltered on quite a few notes giving us a presentation that was hardly variable in terms of silhouettes or color. Staying withing browns and greens, the collection stayed within a limited structure that probably became its own undoing. I, for one, have seen some brilliant military interpretations and this one did not live upto that… not even his last denimology outing. The collection stayed within the parameters of jackets and bandhgalas alll paired with pants, heavy boots and cap (n no that did not give it its tough look). A couple of womenswear were also thrown it, structured and well made but on the whole everything lacked a certain charm even for taking a minimal approach. The only high points that probably came in the collection were a woven vest and a cross over jacket… the rest..sorry! nothing much to talk about there.
Sanam Chaudhri’s was one collection was one I was waiting for primarily because of the vintage techniques that it aimed to employ. What I feared was the trap that Sanam might fall into regarding silhouettes, as tending onto an era, designers tend to go costumey in an attempt to display drama on the ramp. However much of it was laid to rest since Sanam avoided such pitfalls from the word go. The vintage inspired collection BANO was demure and subtly nuanced attempt at contemporarizing (yayy new word) while harking onto traditions. This was probably full on desi-gone-luxury pret outing this year…first being Maheen Kardar’s (here), which was much more dramatic but this one was much more relaxed and calmer compared to the former. Think of this one as subtle Rani Mukerji and former one as Kajol (does that analogy even make sense..but I just had to put it)
Sanam’s collection while incorporating various adage surface treatement techniques, managed to give some fun silhouettes that could be broken down as separates or built up as desired. What she gave us ranged from jackets and crop tops to koti vests, structured cholis and bolero (loved those strong shoulders specifically this one but wasn’t too keen on the gharara skirt that it was paired with) as well as some shalwars, tapered pants and capri izars (wasn’t too sure of those though) and a gorge sari. She managed to experiment with silhouettes of many of the shrugs, incorporating sheer elements too while the last statement piece with that fuller Afghani coat was the perfect build up end the presentation needed.. though the motif and embroidery are not alien to me, but again it is indeed one of the references that I know of. All were minimally styled with a mang tika or a simple earring sans any drama. This was desi vintage done well. I picked up on some of the references of shorter kurtis, some vintage fabrics and embroideries that she showcased. My favorite ones had to be this white on white ensemble with this exteremely well tailored pants, the shorter black jacket with that crop top and the white sari. Net Saris are hard as it is to pull off and to her credit she actually managed to control it and give it pitch perfect pleating and styling without wanting to go OTT and just let it loose just to display the handwork.
The buggy love of Zara Shahjahan came across with more hits than misses in second presentation of the day. The quirky collection, because of its subject matter, and treatment in print was one of the major talking points of the show. The fun elements and youthful vibe kept the whole presentation interesting.
Using bugs as her main focus with a good… a very good amount of flora thrown in, this collection made it to many women’s must have list. Using her reference material, she created running buggy prints as well as placement specific ones. However she kept it from being gross and made them into fun elements through the rendering of the drawings of the prints. The overall bug prints were my favourite. The visually exciting collection had quite a few of florals prints running through it with butterflies too that. Most of these prints were balanced off with an introduction of a solid color into the look. These prints at a few occasions were also embellished with hand embroidery. The one that caught my attention was a dragonfly repeated and embellished.
Major points to the lady for keeping the silhouettes clean and fuss free sans any drapes letting the prints shine. The straighter and structured look ran throughout the collection with jackets, pants, skirts, jumpsuits and crop tops. She, at many points, lets print do all the talking which was a good move. While the buggy-ness of it all might not appeal to all, the ones willing to have some fun, will surely snag it up as soon as it hits the store. Using silk, tulle and organza in her collection, she at points did play up with the sheer vs opaque layering, however I did wish she had explored that more in order to give depth and dimension in some of the ensembles. She managed to present a collection that had its share of hits and misses but scored major points because of its fun prints. The clothes were also paired with embroidered clutches that provided poppy accents to the looks.
However there were sadly more than one miss in a collection that had such fun energy running through it. The sheer embroidered top with such a high neck seemed either not pressed or quite ill fitting. The skirt paired with it too, the whole look, with those earrings, looked like the look was trying too hard but not succeeding. Also the finishing of the same skirt along the hemline.. the puckering was pretty much evident. The sheer skirt, with a printed top, with a jacket, looked kinda all too much for one look. At one end (the top) it looked fun sans that blazer (such a unifor blazer) while below the waist the embroidery made it kinda look formal..combining two different vibes in a look is a pretty difficult terrain to tread on. Also the formal black and yellow piece, as much as I liked it, the look, with its evening and polished elan-esque vibe looked disconnected from the whole collection. Also the overlapped boxy silhouette, though not suppose to have any shape, looked rather frumpy and like an overlapped coat that was waiting to be taken off for the dress to be revealed (the other boxy silhouette was better than this one). The hemlines puckered and wobbled at more occasions than one and it was so sad to see that considering it was one collection that had all the potential to probably be flawless in execution.
What I liked…the running prints of bugs and what she did with them. The structured dresses were a masterstroke with both the prints. The blue jumpsuit with green clutch was such an undertoned and brilliant ode to ‘a bug’s life’. Love the strapless jumpsuit and how well it was stitched (what happened later then??)… Also the first look the short crop top with those printed Capri pants..loved the look.
Images courtesy Faisal Farooqui and his team at Dragonfly
As an ardent fan of knowing what the veteran designer Rizwan beyg is capable of, I was a rather bit disappointed in his presentation. The Digitruck, was an extension or rather a translation of his last collection. Having already done that brilliantly, it was a rather lacklustre opening to the last day.
Taking his last year’s collection forward, this year’s too featured a concoction of vibrant hues on fabric namely silks and surprisingly denim (the first…actually second time I saw digital print on such hard fabric) for men. The collection carried a seventies vibe with bell bottoms, flouncy silhouettes and some exaggerated shapes, were part of the whole presentation. The collection did not find any takers in me but there is no denying they were made well. The Digitruck was the extension..or rather translation of his last collection that he showcased at PFDC. The difference being the earlier one was handcrafted peel offs whereas this was digitally printed onto the fabric. Though it is difficult to manage the same vibrancy of the color when translating from images and scans, he does it, especially on denim. Because it was the same theme, the comparasions were inevitable. I definitely felt that the last one was much more superior to this one. I missed the bags, the shoes for men..
Obviously if it appears in any of the stores I would be the first one in line to buy these. However the big question that everyone was asking was instead of showcasing his collection at pfdc, this should have been the translation of his last collection for the stores where he stocks at. Because we know he is a genius and great at what he does, we wanted to see something new from the designer to see what is up his sleeve next. Also retail brands like Gulabo and Khaadi have already done and sold volumes of truck art themed womenswear so the question does arise how would his clothes fare in terms of Pakistani market or is the theme done and dusted with?? Or will people (like a small minority though like myself) flock to get one of the pieces of the collection?..though I have been told, he has incurred orders in various showings that he have had over destinations.
We want the genius Rizwan Back!! bass
Images courtesy Faisal Farooqui and his team at Dragonfly