March 20, 2021 Asmita Aggarwal

Bending Adversity

Limerick gets knotty; Samant Chauhan welcomes innocence and the 70s get extravagantly beaded with Nirmooha

By Asmita Aggarwal

What is the algorithm of style? Are we ready for a makeover to survive torrential times? These questions remain to be answered as everything in the world including human emotions goes online. The one aspect that fashion successfully managed was to offer an escape from the “real”, but the virus has ensured, we are all firmly rooted, as predictive analysis emerges as a lighthouse to gauge what the market demands.

That’s why most designers are simplifying the process, as it is the end of the red carpet, snazzy shows, glossy shoots, celebrity appearances as well as shimmering stars. Seasons are as outdated as Blahniks and trends have seen a nosedive, making fashion more about regenerating from what already exists.

As the system is rewiring, some style aficionados are adding a nice, big bow on it! It seemed to be the flavour with Abirr n Nanki of Limerick as their powder blue, printed jackets and high waist pants, as well as coppery basket weave skirts told a story with flowers and vines. The knot hung from necks, tresses as well as waists and each garment was styled austerely with a collared, crisp white shirt in their line for FDCI X LFW titled “Aurora”.

Using various techniques in a singular garment —- dip dyeing, prints and delicate detailing on yokes mixing it with wraps and asymmetry gave each ensemble an added edge. Aubergines and lilacs; pastels and ink blues made a vivid palette, what remained the backbone was the multi-coloured stripe that played hide and seek sportily on backs and waists. Draped saris cinched at the waists as well as dhoti skirts offered a relaxed vibe.

The lotus on their kimono-esque jackets an ode to devotional Pichhwai paintings of Rajasthan obliquely told us that we have to rise above our surroundings no matter how hard the times are or will be.

This year, what emerged as a beloved silhouette is the long jacket fastened with a belt, when Prreeti Jaiin Nainutia included it in her repository she gave it a trippy and zippy avatar with linear surface texturing.  Beads and tassels, a 70s staple, was revived and in this mix velvet pant suits in olive green with placement embroideries added, to channel a kind of Rod Stewart spirit. Glittering bodycon dresses with metal and thread work let the light in on a black canvas.

Glamour hasn’t yet frozen like the North Pole, it exists as Siddartha Tytler will tell you in his characteristic party style compete with high paced glittering jackets and dresses as well as some seriously cool dance moves! This proves people are not going to stop shopping, after all we aspire for a bit of twinkle in our wardrobes? Don’t we?

On the other hand, someone rightly said fashion should be a “little more humble and a bit quieter” and maybe that’s why we are all forced to abandon our embellished skirts and watch shows in our faded pyjamas. Even though we are living now in a Birkenstock-seeking virtual world, where laptops have replaced long walks, designers want fashion to remain like a solid marriage and not a fleeting romantic episode.

Thus, Samant Chauhan let the freckles, dried leaves and an ebony and ivory palette as well as the Frida Kahlo-esque braids rule. Small touches made a big difference in the embroidered Victorian pleated collars and ruffled dresses.  Beautifully embroidered capes, full skirts with a refreshing no make-up look brought in child-like innocence. As we dress now for our own pleasure, fashion is losing that gilt-edged swagger and is embracing resilience.

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