February 7, 2017 2:02:42 am
OVER the weekend, the Summer/Resort 2017 edition of Lakme Fashion Week (LFW) in Mumbai served up some solid style by young talents, a touch of Nawabi nuance from the stables of Meera and Muzaffar Ali’s Kotwara and the studios of Tarun Tahiliani, and a gold-flecked grand finale by Anita Dongre. Here’s our pick of some of the haute shows and highlights:
Nearly two decades since she launched her label and many years after she built a fashion empire worthy of putting her on the cover of Fortune’s “50 most powerful women in business” issue, Anita Dongre bagged herself a much-deserved fashion week finale.
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For her “Alchemy” collection, Dongre converted the amphitheatre at the Bandra Fort into a lush green bower and presented a line replete with sublime whites, pastel hues and glazed gold. A subtle medley of zardozi, gota patti, cord work, sequins and thread embroidery on kora cotton, handwoven tissue, khadi, silk organza, chiffon and tulle spelt quiet sophistication.
Equally understated was showstopper Kareena Kapoor Khan’s outfit. The Lakme brand ambassador walked the ramp a little over a month after the birth of son Taimur to rousing applause. She wore a gold floor-length jacket in Chanderi tissue adorned with hand-cut gota patti crafted motifs of prancing deer, jungle vines and flowers, embellished with Swarovski crystals.
Saviojon Fernandes took a decade-long hiatus from LFW and even though the distinct ‘island life’ vibe of his comeback show may suggest he was on an indefinite holiday, the media-shy designer from Goa was simply taking a break from fashion’s cyclical frenzy. His return to the ramp was understated in both volume and velocity, but the crowd present was proof of the elusive designer’s enduring fan following.
We saw definite flashbacks to Fernandes’s earlier oeuvre – his dexterity with tie-dye, his clever take on cut and fluidity, his play on androgyny, the mesh referencing fishermen influences, his eye for accessories (the safety pins were back, but with blown glass neck-pieces this time), and his canny use of colour. What was somewhat unfamiliar was the cacophony of prints that came together in a sometimes cohesive, but mostly discordant composition. We loved the madness of the lopsided striped shirt against the printed short skirt, the patterned pinafore-like overlays and the patchwork pants and pockets, but were perplexed by the half-and-half dresses, that displayed clever construction techniques, but looked like they suffered from a personality disorder. In fact, the print-on-print pieces with the gypsy vibe, the deconstruction of his menswear-inspired pieces and the understated glamour of the luxe shift dresses, all spoke a disparate language. Fernandes has insisted all along that this wasn’t a collection, but a holiday wardrobe. And that might well have been the point to contemplate, because as collections go, this one suffered from an identity crisis.
In contrast, Kolkata girl Nupur Kanoi stuck to her sexy-meets-sassy signature. She may have been away from LFW for two years, but her show “Lost and Found in Africa” saw her slip back into familiar territory with ease.
Intricate bandhani tie-dye met colourful glass beadwork, fringe detailing and metallic elements in her trademark luxe sporty style. We especially loved the slouchy all-black pieces with the African embroidery elements and the graphic gradations of the ombre patterned pieces.
The House of Kotwara presentation brought their trademark regal Awadhi creations to the LFW ramp and showcased the handiwork of the craftspeople of Meera and Muzaffar Ali’s NGO Dwar Pe Rozi.
The show also marked the ramp debut of the duo’s talented daughter Sama Ali, who took the curtain call as the label’s creative director with her illustrious parents and showstopper Aditi Rao Hydari. Sama, a graduate from the London College of Fashion, joined the brand in 2014 but chose this occasion to step into the spotlight.
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