The Award season just went by and by the time it culminates at Oscars, one pretty much has a good idea of how celebrities are going to dress and the style they would choose to follow. Oscars brought in drama but a lot of it was rather littered with conventional choices. However a lot of actresses did manage to turn heads for all the right reasons on the red carpet. Read the rest of this entry »
The red carpet for Emmys this season had a Mindy makeover with so many of the celebs opting for some wonderful colors rocking every bit of it
Girlfriend knew exactly what to do with the gown, and the actress nailed it twirling around the night in her red Jason Wu chiffon number. With slick back hair and red lips, Ms Chopra was just pitch perfect in that gown. And let us just take a moment on that stage, Read the rest of this entry »
For a fashion awards night it was ironic as to how many usually-well-turned-up-on-red-carpet people, had quite the opposite effect. Many turned heads on the red carpet and not for the right reasons failing to impress anyone that saw them, and here I thought Black was the most safest color. From capes on dresses to odd ( and not the good kind) dresses and gowns it was pretty much a catastrophe. While the British Fashion Awards 2015 in partnership with Swarovski did miss last year’s sass, however not everyone was a lost cause and some of the red carpet appearances did kick some serious ass!! My highlight of the night: Jonathan Anderson winning both Menswear and Womenswear designer for 2015.
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Pitti Uomo this year had a section dedicated specifically to african designers titled AFRICAN CONSTELLATION. Now being a trade show, showing at Pitti Uomo as a brand is a great exposure and that is where I discovered this gem of a brand surprised at myself how this genius of a label was hidden for so long. What many designers are pretty much cautious to venture into, is the very essence of this brand’s core foundation; prints for menswear.
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.
Set against the backdrop of Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture, a seperate event apart from the fashion week took place with major players making an appearance and encouraging the new guns. The Maybelline Newyork Millenial Fashion show was an attempt to introduce new designers (wish there were new stylists and makeup artists too collaborating with the designers for looks but.. baby steps) into the industry. The winner to be decided by the present audience’s voting would score a slot at next season’s Fashion Week.
With a collection titled Royal Soccer (why would you name your collection that, inclusion of gold doesn’t make it royal), but to his credit he succeeded in presenting a collection lined with sportswear references, honeycomb patterns and a spurts of potential to develop this capsule into a possible feature collection. While his gold outings may not have been a success, the monochromatic pieces pretty much hit a homerun, esp the printed pants. Her on point winter layering was one to watch out for especially the jackets and some fun pants. One thing I wasn’t too sure of that if you were doing all structured sporty pieces, why is there a sari to tag along or even a draped ensemble in black. The collection though at points did gave me a DEV R NIL meets HUEMMN deja vu feeling. This one has so much potential but needed some major step-back editing and changes but he had some of my favorite references that he worked with. A designer definitely to look out for .
Playing up the vintage references, Nitasha presented a collection that was pretty, easy on the eyes and wearable. The collection had some pretty lacey details (gotcha!) that worked up in favor of the designer. Her creme palette with some darker toned gradations were interesting and she managed to insert modern elements within her vintage inspired collection easily to score brownie points. Be it the peplum, the different lengths of the skirts and silhouettes, all were within a similar vein making it a much more conclusive presentation. Her use of hints of prints, pearly details and embroidery, all were an ode to British era and Anglo culture. While I personally would have liked some experimentation and a rather punchier collection, since the silhouettes were on the safer side.
The only menswear capsule to showcase at the show, the collection by Sameer Sain had him working with denim and combining it with jute…two very opposing materials, one organic, other processed along with some metallic detailing, Sameer Sain’s collection attempted to merge the two. The unusual choice of color of denim (that certain shade of blue) was commendable along with darker hues that are a classic. Though he did present the usual silhouettes (lets just face it, no one is gonna buy experimental menswear in Pakistan), I liked the fact that he did present a jumpsuit, one that I would not mind in my closet. His cargo details along with zippers were interestingly done and controlled without going overboard. Some very neat finishings *slow applause* . Not sure about the butt jute patch though! need ed to check that out bud.. I liked the styling, the smeared facepaint was just enough to pull it together for the rugged look. MAJOR brownie points for the shoes, especially those floral boots (if you are making them, where do I order), fun two toned espadrilles and woven sneakers.
Hadn’t Abel showed earlier this year at the Rising talent at FPW? I wonder how did the people not see that while shortlisting people. As far as the Scarlet poison collection goes,I did not see any interpretions of scarlet letter or adulterous affair.. seemed more like goth queen gone miss Havisham. The part ascot and part vintage evening wear collection seemed a mix of strange OTT in presentation with high low dress, a sari, an oddly proportionate gown and seperates…all also with some serious bling too on the clothes. The inconsistency in the vibe of the garments was off putting, but some of the prints derived from hebew calligraphy do deserve a mention. Its just that the heavy headed ness (all puns intended) of the collection and execution did not do justice to prints that could have been done up brilliantly. Where’s that Scarlet letter now??
Hitting it out the ball park with her debut capsule, Madiha Raza’s attention to detail was remarkable. With her collection ‘Flights of a bird’, couldn’t be more proud since she was a fellow graduate, and my senior at school and to quote Khizra Munir, we felt the ‘Shameless glee’ and rightfully so. Madiha basically killed it through her collection. Layers, sheer, laser cutwork all featured in her work that I usually attribute to her. Belting it out masterfully with digital prints to be paired with these, her debut outing was as firm footed as a seasoned designer. Jackets, sheer saris over printed full skirts, laid back structured silhouettes and her use of fun materials including felt and leatherite made her pretty much the frontrunner of this show (man! I wanted some fun competition as a viewer). The collection was punchy and though I wasn’t too sure about two of the ensembles (red tunic and the blue cross over scarf with grey jumpsuit) , the rest were pretty much a knockout. Her attention to detail be in terms of makeup (the brows and lashes) or the textured and layered bags and shoes or the bag within a clear bag, the looks were well thought and planned and executed for that futuristic bohemian woman.
A special shoutout to Latitude CRS for starting and ending the event at a decent hour and running things smoothly
**Images courtesy Tapu Javeri and Kashif Rashid
Possibly the best show of the night, Khaadi Khaas’s summer presentation pretty much impressed me with its near flawless execution. Inspired by the baroque, the collection in its spirit carried that execution of exaggeration in terms of forms with floral bursts and digital prints. With a collection that impressive, i’m expecting a high end editorial and nothing else… lets hope am not disappointed
Florals never… and i do mean it never go out of vogue especially during summers. They just find a way to strike back, and this time with Khaadi Khaas, it was all going vintage. Starting off with those in fully top to bottom print looks, the collection later on moved onto pairing them with self embroidered off whites (thankfully they picked the perfect shade). Graduating further from that, they moved into major white on white looks with accents of pops of color through the embroideries against white. These embroideries in floral trellises and motifs provided the right amount of accent while being rendered in a multitude or single color. The white on white separates were perfect for this summer and had a certain aristocratic feel to it thanks to all those floral motifs in the pre renaissance era arrangements.
The seperates with uber chic crop tops to skirts, capes, jackets, sherwanis, crop jackets and moving to floor length dresses, pants and cuffed shalwars, the collection presented quite an array of options this summers . Having a fluid structure gave the whole look summer fun yet sorta authoritative look to it. The intelligently done and proportioned floorlength made models look longer. However a few of the silhouettes combined with those floral prints and embroidery came along with Sabyasachi (DCW 13) overtones. Specifically the digital print and tiered embroidery floor lengths. But having said that, they did a brilliant job and their finishing was exquisite.. no faults there. The collection was uber chic, pretty and commercial…which is very necessary for a brand like khaadi to send down its trickle downs in the stores.
The bags were another major highlight of the show. The vintage floralish bags inspired by Dolce & Gabbana Fall/Winter 2014 meets Masaba Gupta’s debut collection for Satya Paul box bags were with all the jewels and rhinestones on print. However done in their own way to suit their theme and done with equal finesses, they were in varying sizes complemented with chains. Coming in all shapes and sizes, the bags made such an impact that they were a major talking point long after the show was over. Even though being a guy, I would sooooo want them coz they would be perfect collectibles…sadly like many things, this too would not go into production because of its costs. LOVEEED ALL of THEM. Plus the marcel waves hair and bun…yes I noticed..complimented the whole thing to a T.
If had to be nitpicky, wasn’t quite keen on dividing those florals into boxes… esp in that combo in one of the earlier looks. Also a casual look with that collar shirt seemed to be a casual misfit in the collection. Also the transitions from digital into many whites and embroidered pieces was much more quickly instead of having an equal or a strong footing for printed pieces.
Loved almost everything … *sigh* u just sit and want to take it all in feeling happy. This is the kind of show that makes you want to come, sit and go home feeling satisfied yet wanting more.I just did not want the show to end.
*Images courtesy Faisal Farooqui and his team at Dragonfly…and me