August 28, 2021 Asmita Aggarwal

Mood Dressing

Pearls, zardosi and threadwork speak about finding inner strength in a line by Anamika that pays homage to beauty

By Asmita Aggarwal

Anamika Khanna is known for her attention to detail, superlative finish and a devoted clientele which always leaves it to her to find the ideal trousseau. Her India Couture Week 2021 collection has been a reflection of current mental state and the mood that she is in. It mirrors what she is processing emotionally, physically and metaphorically, to finally believing there is a supreme power that you need to believe in, which really makes it all happen. “There is an unnamed abstract force that felt around me when I observed what was happening during the pandemic, the worst crisis mankind has faced,” she adds.

The line she confesses is a celebration of who we are, an homage to beauty, there is no questioning, just acknowledgment of the beautiful crafts and art produced by karigars who have shown tremendous fortitude in the eye of a storm—- surface detailing that will stand the test of time. “It is a line that expresses gratitude to the cosmic energy,” she adds.

The film was shot in a studio in Mumbai, and this year Anamika says there is no attempt to reinvent or push any stylistic boundaries, but it is more about innate acceptance. “Zardosi, threadwork and pearls have been added and each piece I would say has a unique DNA, for me it has been an emotional journey to put this together,” she explains.

The digital medium has been a teacher for most, and Anamika believes, one has to adapt with the times, as the audience is already familiar with her repertoire, she hasn’t focused on details, nor techniques, in the film to make a point, but let the viewer make his own deductions. “I have made pieces that can be passed on to the next generation that is the mainstay of the line. I have clients who come with my 15-year-old jacket that they want repurposed and we do it. Or a bride who comes with her mother and grandmother’s sari and wants us to add a bit of both for their blessings in the bridal outfit we create for her. This I believe is the true essence of design when you can listen and incorporate what she wants, and in a way make it timeless,” she adds.

Interestingly, as the world moves to pastels and subdued glamour Anamika admits that there is nothing like the magic of a bride dressed in red. “The change I have observed is not about wearing crimson or not, but holistically they have a mind of their own and no one is selecting their outfits, they have the final say, which I find interesting to work with,” she adds. She cites the example of the much-talked about wedding of Rhea Kapoor, where she decided to ditch the heavy lehengas, and get married, in a quiet ceremony, wearing a mul-mul sari, and a pearl mesh veil.

“In the end it is not about wearing Anamika Khanna, but the designer connecting with the bride and making sure she gets exactly what she envisioned,” she concludes. And with this thought, she made us believe in magic……

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