As a child, to see a bright, glitzy outfit sashay on the ramp with a smatter of sequin, would have probably been the highlight of my entire childhood. But then I grew older, and decided to make fashion my life. And with changing choices, came a changing mindset.
Couture in India is a bag of mixed emotions; it’s about blending history with craft, and lending them a contemporary slang without losing your soul. For every bride-to-be, it’s a new array of designs to wear for their upcoming ceremonies. But, for every fashion obsessed and observer like myself, it’s what fresh the designer created to cement his seat in my heart.
This year, Manish Malhotra opened the India Couture Week at Delhi with extravagant outfits displayed around the central theme of Persia, naming the collection ‘The Persian Story’. Persian art is a hugely popular place of reference for designers, artists and interior decorators to seek inspiration. And why not? The country boasts of rich heritage, architecture that dates back to the 16th century and relics that are worth reading.
The Persian embroidery mainly contains florals, fauna depicted with motifs of birds, parakeets and animals. The most popular stitches are the cross-stitch, a drawn-thread work and quill work. The designer’s rendition of ‘Persia’ was Indianised, twisted with the atypical Manish Malhotra-esque aesthetic. It bore his sartorial heart in the lehenga and not one outfit felt mis-matched.
It was the right amalgamation of a modern day fairytale, with models baring themselves in off-shoulder blouses, sheer backs and lehengas worn sans a choli. Coming to the embroideries, Manish ensured he left his mark on your heart.
The architectural shapes weren’t something I haven’t seen on his ensembles before, but they had the 21st century vibe to it. The trail to Deepika’s gown, the dupatta styled on the side, a kullu cap, and bell sleeves were all elements that were borrowed from Victorian- Persian influence. But he effortlessly included tombs, the cloud collar on both womenswear and menswear, ancient silverware and carpet art, luxe velvet fabrics and even colours of Persia on most outfits – but on a completely abstract canvas.
Surely, a grand set with chandeliers hanging, the best of Bollywood seated front row, and Deepika Padukone and Fawad Khan pulling the crowd together; it was a show worth watching. Because, fashion is always thirsty for dreams, and Manish took me to another dreamy escapade, again.
Tell us what you think of the collection in the comments below!
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Picture Credit: FDCI