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Dipti Mudaliar| Posted On: 11-Oct.-2012

The biggest fashion event this season concluded on a high note. The whole 5 day extravaganza was not as grand as its earlier versions which witnessed big names from Bollywood and personalities from other social circuits, but the designs blew us away...

Raj Shroff and Virtues by Viral, Ashish & Virkant
The monochromatic theme made its way through the final and last day of Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week Spring Summer too. Designer Raj Shroff showcased his cutting edge collection in black and white. The theme of the collection was based on a vision that evolved along different parts – lines, facets, textures, volumes together brought to create a weave that came as fashioned clothes. Each piece had an echo and sentiment. The silhouettes were chic and western with use of sheer fabrics. The palette - a simple but powerful Monochromatic theme of Black and White. Along with embellishments, the fabrics were textured with prints and embroidery.

Virtues, the label by talented trio Viral, Ashish & Virkant presented - The ‘Moroccan Princess’. Into the world of exotic Middle Eastern glamour inspired by the Moorish Art and design of the Marrakesh, the collection was a spectacular cocktail of bold 70’s glamour and the rich sensual mystery of Morocco. The vivid colours and high shine lent a 70’s influence with the sleek and flowing lines of flowing silhouettes. Brilliant colour scheme of sunshine yellows, salmon pink, sea green, beige, ivory and indigo were stunning against accents of coral, olive and black. The creations were abundant in rich and warm colours. Digital prints, summer dresses, kaftans and robes combined for an opulent look. An oasis of luxurious silks and prints in saturated tones with pop sparkling silver metallic, the spring summer collection was enthralling.

Jenjum Gadi, Pia Pauro, Shivan & Narresh
Jenjum’s inspiration this season was Gota. ‘An Ode to Gota’ had a very young and contemporary look to it - the silhouettes were a mix of drapes and structured garments in bright and vibrant colours and with use of a shimmering embellishment, added sparkle to the face of garments and textiles – the Gota, the collection was superb. Gota is the appliqué work on cloths; a fabric ornamentation, where small pieces of zari or ribbons are stitched on to the fabric with the edges sewn down to create elaborate patterns. Shining, Shimmering and Hot!

Ideal for a resort holiday, Pia Pauro’s – ‘Isola Pia’ translated itself into an Island which was Italian. A flirty, fun and sexy collection portrayed Pia’s loves for colours. The hues included - bold greens and bright pinks in fabrics like the silk satin, silk georgette and cotton silk. Sunset dresses and cocktail dresses were inspired from French Polynesian motifs, Ikat prints on swimwear, jute beach bags with ornate Ostrich feather trimmings and prints in verdant green and brown were inspired by Coconut groves. Creations in black, white, pink, and blue were inspired by ancient body art. Sequinned kaftans, bikinis, party Sunset cocktail dresses, embroideries inspired from Sind on pencil skirts; cotton dresses and brunch specials were spotted too.

Shivan  & Narresh’s collection titled ZIP took forward the artistic language of abstract expressionist Barnett Newman and conversed with his ideology of colour fields and the use of hued zips to define spatial structures. Iconic works across Newman’s lifespan as an artist were given form in the collective ensemble. This collection reinforced the brand’s art approach to design, translating it to sculpt swimsuits in a pop inspired colour palette mixing cherry reds, aquamarines and chocolate browns. The silhouettes expressed a structured freedom amalgamating summery linens and cottons with defined forms apt for a sojourned state of mind. Newman’s bold zips were translated into hand-painted linens forming the canvas for the collection shape.

Charu Parashar, Rajedeep Ranawat, Soltee by Sulakshana
Politics and Indian glamour also go hand-in-hand. For the above 3 shows, politician Amar Singh was spotted gracing the front seats. With rap and reggae beats, Charu’s collection dazzled the runway. Sheer and flowy fabrics, chic and fluid silhouettes, embellishments and prints influenced from Islamic kaleens and tiles were seen in the collection. The prints had geometric with floral embroideries on it and colours were beiges, greys, shades of blues, crimsons, purples with bright orange accents.
Rajdeep Ranawat presented SANTORINI, a collection filled with vibrant colours and beautiful baroque prints that spoke volumes about his love for all things natural. Inspired by the island’s strong neo-classical and baroque influences visible across their churches and public buildings, SANTORINI by Rajdeep Ranawat reflected the fresh Mediterranean ocean, the white washed background of the Grecian paradise and the exuberance of fresh flora and fauna through prints that were layered with joie de verve in his resort fashion.

With a white to ivory base, the collection was set off by Aruba blue, Raspberry, Calypso Coral, Parakeet green, Mandarin and Banana yellow beautifully layered through his designs. Rich fabrics like pure silk, silk chiffon, silk satin, tulle and silk georgette gave the whole collection a gloriously extravagant and ethereal look. The wispy gowns, kaftans and the chic bolero jackets infused with the bright colours and prints were enough to tantalize one’s eyes and mind. Rajdeep also introduced a men’s wear range and an accessories collection. A range of handbags, totes, bright embroidered clutches shoes and jewellery inspired by similar complimentary prints were beautiful. The clear aqua oceans, the blue sky, white houses perched on gigantic rocks on hills, the colourful burst of bougainvillea’s, the blue and white churches, ornamental grills and an endless view of the sea completed with the spectacular sunset coloured horizons which he photographed and then created an artwork through illustration, Rajdeep’s gets full marks for turning his inspiration into cloths and accessories!

Inspired from the military style’s collection, Sulakshana Monga’s new collection had a smarter and characterized look portraying the stronger side of women. The essence of the collection was Indian and the structure was contemporary. The techniques and the treatment were modern and indigenous. The fabrics used in the collection comprised of Silks, Chiffons, Georgettes and Chanderies. A limited fusion of jersey knits gave an extra edge to the collection. The detailed thread Embroideries, Patchwork and Geometrical web’s created luxurious surfaces in her collection. A little dull affair after a bright show by fellow designers but no complaints.

Hemant & Nandita, Joy Mitra, Nida Mahmood
Designer duo Hemant & Nandita presented their SS13 collection titled ‘Kaleidology’. Known for their experimentation and playfulness when it comes to garments, the duo didn’t fail this time either. They played with X-rayed flowers like Hibiscus, Roses and Tulips shifting around the Grey Smoke and created a kaleidoscopic effect on the garments. Prints being their forte, this season too they presented prints in different manners. Silhouettes such as shift dresses, shorts, shirts, pants, peplum tops, body suits etc. in organza, thick texture crepes and spandex added the visual appeal and captured the essence of spring.

Collection titled ‘An Evening At The Town Hall’ was presented by designer Joy Mitra. The collection paid an ode to the classic colonial era of costuming when British seamstresses joined hands with Indian masterjis to create a fusion silhouette of great zing and panache. A designer renowned for his rooted sensibilities, Mitra this season remembered the Raj in all its glorious style. The collection was a mix of georgettes and nets with interesting embroideries, textural treatments in black, ivory, red and gold with elegant design elements stylized for a contemporary twist. The models swayed the ramp in seductive manner adding the oomph factor.

Nida is different and so are her designs! The show began with one of the introductory theme music of famous Hollywood producers and to create a surrealistic and dreamy world, used dialogues from Hindi movies as background scores. Aptly titled ‘sapna cinema’ she incorporated many light fabrics with imprints of flower and roosters. With avant grade 3D dresses made of small bulbs, the collection was all about fun things which we see in our dreams and the rooster was the one who brings us back again to the realistic world. Rooster was the main muse for this collection and she had incorporated 3D garments which were made of small bulbs. Models were wearing colourful and artistic Masks which emphasised on how animated one’s dreams are. The collection had sarees, tunics and kaftans and the fabrics mostly of cottons, silk and crapes. Dreams have thousand colours! Isn’t it!

Wills Lifestyle Grand Finale by Ritu Kumar
The grand finale was one big affair with everyone enjoying it to the last moment. Ballroom dance sequence by 3 couples on French and yester year old Hindi movie songs got everyone grooving to the beat and sing along the lyrics. Everyone instantly had a smile on their faces and their eyes were filled with love and innocence. Cinematography and videos on the scenes placed on the walls surrounding the ramp had everyone mesmerised and the clothes were GRAND with Ritu’s signature style. Blazing colours, rich deep pinks, bold and elegant lines made possible by treatments like serigraphy and lithography spelled glamour and romanticism. Recreating the magic and simplicity of Art Deco, the foremost design movements of the 1930s in art, fashion and architecture, the collection exemplified a mastery of graphics with its aesthetic message wonderfully suited to both India and Europe.

Split into two parts, the show began with the Label Ritu Kumar Brand and culminated to RITU KUMAR Couture. The opening sequence by Label Ritu Kumar presented Art Deco in a contemporary design language and context. Using the motifs and moods of the era, the pieces were crafted to offer a modern representation. Dropped waists, bold forms and delicate embroideries were juxtaposed with modern techniques and shaping. The collection was very graphic. Fabrics were predominantly silks in chiffon, crepe and twill. The mood was svelte evening-wear and embellishments exuded themes and inspirations from architecture.

The second half of the show drew inspiration from the Indian Freedom Movement and the colonial era and dipped into the romance of the 1930’s. Using the rich design heritage of Ritu Kumar Couture, the collection drew from the European influence on Indian royalty during the pre-partition period. This resulted in the use of rich tapestries, laces, brocades and embroideries. The collection ended with a regal collection of gold, black and jewelled ensembles and the beautiful Show-stopped Esha Gupta was reminiscent of the India of the mid - 20th century with its Baroque influences and distinctive style of Indo European fashion. Lavish, Historic and Glam!

Pics: Suresh Gola

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