Inspired by Goddess Durga and traditional Assamese motifs like Singkhap — a royal motif that portrays two lions facing each other; the Kolki (paisley motif), Moourah (peacock), and Pokhila (butterfly), Sanjukta Dutta reflected true communal harmony and serenity of Assam in her designs with her collection called “Mekhela Chador”
Models walked down the ramp in exquisite hand-woven saris, gorgeous Lehenga/cholis with contrasting flower motifs as well as traditional motifs of the Bodo and Miri communities. Gathered skirts were teamed with backless cholis, shirt blouses and halter neck bodice that graced the ramp in vivid eye-catching hues. The designer experimented with different ways of draping the saree by using woven yarns such us ‘Pat’ that is mulberry silk, ‘Muga’, a very rare and high quality Assamese silk, which is naturally golden in colour and ‘Tussar’ that has a rich beige-gold colour and lovely texture.
The highlight of the show was the traditional Assamese Mekhela Chador teamed with a contemporary blouse that added to the beauty of the entire look. Bollywood’s dimple queen Preity Zinta looked stunning in a black and red, classic saree with highlights of gold motifs and temple border along with a backless choli, as she ended the show.
The second day was also dedicated to conversations and experiences around sustainable fashion in India.Among these there was a standout showing that had sustainable fashion and inclusivity crafted in the story and one which had a strong and powerful message. LFW collaborated with Kranti – an NGO that empowers girls from Mumbai’s Red Light areas (founded by Ms. Robin Chaurasiya and Mandeep Nagi of ‘Shades of India’ – one of India’s leading textiles labels .
The core point of the presentation was the girls from Kranti who celebrated who they are, and spoke from their heart as they shared their personal stories through an interactive performance with the audience. Mandeep showcased her collection through the performance by Kranti girls conceptualised and directed by Neeraj Gaba of India’s “Next Top Model” fame. The Kranti girls told their stories while demonstrating their pride and independence in the clothes from Mandeep’s ‘The Bagh Collection’.
Mandeep says,” I won’t call myself a fashion designer, my passion for textiles brings forth the style and confidence I wish to share and see in every woman. Therefore, I have always photographed them on women who may seem ordinary but are absolutely not.”
The Artisans’ Centre “Reincarnations Show” conceived and curated by Radhi Parekh supported by Mantra Foundation. Presented 5 very innovative and interesting designers. Smriti Dixit ( jewellery collage),a collection presented by “The Stitching Project” from the studios of Fiona Wright and Praveen Nayak and shoes from ‘Kurio’ by Megha Rawat fitted perfectly into the sustainable theme. Gaury Pathare’s travel souvenirs “Wandering Whites” combined with brass, industrial waste and scrap materials proved how materials and fabrics can be recycled and turned into great stylish items. To the live music by the Merope Quartet the variety of clothes, jewellery, footwear, bags, scarves and accessories were a veritable feast for the eyes.
“Don’t throw away your old saris,” said Stefano Funari who works for an NGO – Community Outreach Programme (C.O.R.P.) that runs vocational training programmes for disadvantaged women. The brand “I Was a Sari” presented fashion from recycled saris using the reuse and upcycle techniques.
Dharavi Design Dialogue
To highlight the work of the experts in Dharavi and give a new dimension to their work, designer Jay Ramrakhiani presented his innovations on garments comprising evening wear in georgette, silk, net, tussar and brocades with striking laser cutting, and beautiful multi-coloured embroidery. The topic “A Dharavi Design Dialogue” comprised a thought -provoking panel discussion on the subject; along with a fashion presentation by designer Jay Ramrakhiani who joined hands with Mohammed Ismail Ansari and Shaikh Alam, embroidery artisans from Dharavi to create 11 ensembles.
Actuality of Consonance: Khadi
Hyderabad- based designer Sailesh Singhania presented an inspiring collection – Actuality of Consonance: Khadi. South Fame Regina Cassandra flaunted the showstopper to resounding applause from Bollywood celebs Urvashi Rautela, Nora Fatehi and Neha Shetty. Regina Cassandra will be seen in Aankhen 2 with Amitabh Bachchan and Arshad Warsi.