October 2, 2013 Asmita Aggarwal

Youthful Vibe

Three debutants at WIFW SS 14; Vedangi Aggarwal, Shweta Kapur and Priyanka Kakkar reveal their greatest fears, design dreams, plans for the future and hopes for changing the style milieu.

It is quite metaphorically and literally a new dawn for Lucknow-born debutant Vedangi Aggarwal, and that’s why the title of her line “Aurora” seems appropriate. Winner of the reality show Let’s Design sponsored by the Cotton Council, she has based her line on the virtuous fabric which she claims is tough to work with if your game revolves around the fall, in a line dominated by dresses and gowns. “It was a challenge, but I learnt so much in the process,” says the NIFT Ahmedabad graduate.

Inspired by the Victorian era, she has used pastels with gold to present a line which she terms as “sophisticated and elegant”. “The market for Indian clothes is saturated, as a young designer my attempt remains to add newness to Western cuts,” she explains.

Greenhorns seem to be pushing the envelope of set parameters of design, so newbie Priyanka Kakkar of the label Ankyra (which is her sun sign Sagittarius, in Greek) is ready with her collection “Aurelian Bequest” or golden heritage. Priyanka, a NIFT (Delhi) graduate likes to interpret history and culture in a modern context for a woman who is hip and young and wants something which is semi-formal, bordering on formal. “Art of Morocco has been a big initiator of this line, each garment tells a story, in subdued colours like ivory, olive, green and pinks. We have kaftans, gowns, dresses to saris which are crafted out of rich silks, chiffons and georgettes,” she says.

As Morocco in its thematic significance is quite close to Indian craftsmanship, Priyanka has dabbled in zardosi, patchwork and merged two diverse fabrics to get a unique, feminine effect. But there is another surprise up her sleeve, Priyanka has designed for English actress and lingerie model Gemma Atkinson and Gauhar Khan in the yet to be released Bollywood film Fever. “Bollywood is a lot different as you have to follow the script and design according to requirement of a particular scene. Gauhar has a beautiful body and Gemma is an international star, so it is an honour for me to dress them. The film also stars Rajeev Khandelwal and we just wrapped up a shoot in Switzerland; the film is slated for a November release,” she says excitedly.

But Priyanka has her 10-year plan ready, which includes launching a couture line. “It is the ultimate test of what you learnt, imbibed and effectively put to good use,” she smiles.

Sportswear seems to be the flavour of the season and debutant Shweta Kapur is riding the wave. A London College of Fashion graduate, she interned with Burberry to get a grip of what’s in store for her. “It was an amazing journey to see the high standards of quality and workmanship they adhere to,” she smiles.
Street style is the niche Shweta is exploring and her USP is giving an Indian option to global labels like Zara and Mango so everything starts from Rs 5,000 and ends at Rs 10,000. But here is the catch, luxury fabrics have been used to give a smooth finish. “I experimented with patterns, playing with darts to see how the body moves around a silhouette. It was the process I went through to develop my identity. Though I do feel my label is for a girl who needs something great to wear everyday,” she confesses.

A label targeted at women who are youthful (by nature not age), Shweta’s line “Cut in Knot Up” for WIFW has an edgy and easy-to-fit-in vibe. It includes Bermudas, dresses, bralets and jackets unlike her last line which was dominated by dungarees. Silks, satins and taffeta add shine to a vibrant palette and textured finishes. “This is the first time I am showing, so managing a business, time and balancing creatives has been the toughest part. But I do have a plan in place, four collections in a year, explore dimensions of knitwear and an e-commerce website to get the show on the road,” she concludes.

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