Chic 2012: The Bollywood Fashion Story

Chic 2012: The Bollywood Fashion Story

In the movies

Cocktail’s three lead actors’ looks, all styled by Anaita Shroff Adajania, were a major part of the pre-release publicity blitz. Everyone wanted to know about Diana Penty’s jumpsuit and Deepika Padukone’s skirt. And no one really asked much about Saif Ali Khan, because he looked too old to be in the movie.

Cocktail Fashion

No one cared much about the clothes in Ishaqzaade, though I found the costumes in the movie to be among the most intelligently designed in recent Bollywood history. I can’t imagine Parineeti Chopra’s character without the black waistcoat over a fitted kurta.

Parineeti Chopra-Ishaqzaade-8

The fashion in Jab Tak Hai Jaan and Student of the Year fell flat after high expectations. But where one lacked charm and romance, the latter’s mantra was “Brands, brands, brands” without a sensible story to tell.

Student of the Year

On the covers

The surprise fashion mag cover girl find of the year was Kalki Koechlin (Women’s Health in November and Vogue the following month), while editorial favourite Sonam Kapoor appeared in Roberto Cavalli yet again on the cover of Grazia. (Yawn).


On the small screen

Amitabh Bachchan’s jackets and bandhgalas on Kaun Banega Crorepati were superbly elegant and finely tailored by Rohit Bal. Karan Johar donned casual- dressy blazers on Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa, while Salman Khan’s Bigg Boss wardrobe was confusing (too many colours and styles).

Madhuri Dixit and Karan Johar in Jhalak Dikhla Ja

Most people loved Madhuri Dixit’s Jhalak Dikhla Jaa clothes and jewellery, and her stylist made it a point to dress the actor in outfits from various Indian designers. No bodycon dresses for her!

Surprise style icon

Sridevi had been under the fashion watchers’ radar for a while now, but in 2012 she surprised everyone with a new-found, elegant look, wearing Manish Malhotra and Sabyasachi. She wowed everyone when she walked for the latter in Delhi, a far cry from her stumbling ramp appearance in an ugly silver-grey gown for Neeta Lulla couple years ago.

Sridevi for Sabyasachi Couture Week 2012

Not (yet) an icon

Alia Bhatt may have had a big debut with Student of the Year, and appeared on two covers (Vogue and Grazia), but her personal style quotient was quite blah. The problem? She tried too hard to look cute.


Bollywood Fashion: Anaita Shroff Adajania stirs a heady fashion mix in Cocktail

Bollywood Fashion: Anaita Shroff Adajania stirs a heady fashion mix in Cocktail

In my previous post, I introduced Cocktail fashion with help from the movie’s costume stylist Anaita Shroff Adajania. During my chat with her, I got deeper insight into the movie’s costumes- developing the looks, brands to spot, and key trends. Here are the highlights from our style chat.

Anaita Shroff Adajania - Cocktail fashion

How did you relate the characters in Cocktail to their costumes and looks in the film?

Each character in Cocktail is different from the other, so it was easy to relate Veronica, Meera and Gautam’s personalities with their looks. Veronica (Deepika Padukone) is very fashion forward, mixing high street fashion with designer wear. Meera, being a middle-class girl from Delhi, is more conservative in her dressing- so she will keep her arms and legs covered as much as possible. Gautam is a well-off young guy with a casual approach to life and fashion.

(To read more about their looks, read An introduction to Cocktail style).


The film has a very international look- featuring trends like nautical stripes, shorts and prints. How did you achieve that?

I work with a great young team- especially Ayesha Dasgupta, who has also dressed the supporting cast. Besides that, I spent time looking at how people dressed across the word, observing people and street style and recording memories and nightmares! I sourced for the movie in London and had brainstorming sessions with the director and producer. We discussed who the characters were, where they came from, what they did… even if it wasn’t part of the movie. My intention was to get the costumes right for the film.

Cocktail - Deepika Padukone Saif Ali Khan Diana Penty

What are the key fashion trends in Cocktail that fashion lovers and fans could try?

The top trend is montone- wearing the same colour from head to toe. For instance, Deepika wears a green t-shirt and shorts with matching accessories in the movie.

Also, there are new ways of layering to try out- like belts over cardigans and shirts. And then there’s the return to the classics, such trench coats, and pairing tees with shorts.

Then there is mixing of high street and luxury, deconstructed (oversized) t-shirts rather than figure hugging, and stacked accessories for women.

What are some of the fashion brands you have used to dress Deepika, Diana and Saif in Cocktail?

I’ve done a lot of high street shopping for the movie, along with some luxury brands. You will see Topshop, French Connection, All Saints, River Island, Pull & Bear and Zara, among others. As for the high fashion brands, there’s a patent pink bag from Chanel, sunglasses from Dior (for Deepika and Saif), Burberry trench coat and bag (for Saif), and an Hermes scarf. Diana’s character carries a Tod’s bag, and Amrapali Jewels are very important to her character.

Cocktail - Deepika Padukone Saif Ali Khan Diana Penty

Which are your favourite looks from the movie?

My favourite is Deepika’s poster look- sequined skirt (All Saints), with t-shirt, Dior sunglasses and flat sandals with feather. Among Saif’s looks, I love the t-shirt-blazer-jeans combo and unusual colour combinations like mauve and grey. As for Diana, her pink salwar kameez is gorgeous- love it!

Cocktail - Deepika Padukone Saif Ali Khan Diana Penty

What should a fashion lover look out for while watching the movie?

The list is endless, but here goes anyway… The Burberry leather jacket, Pucci scarf that Deepika ties in her hair, Monet jewellery, and the Anya Hindmarch bag. The brands are a subtle mix just like the title of the movie.

Reader question- How can I stay on top of fashion trends, yet look different from the rest?

You must dress for yourself, and don’t copy movie star looks. You can individualise trends you like, such as layering. Choose a belt to layer over a cardigan, but it can be any cardigan, not necessarily the one you spotted in a movie or on a celeb.

Reader question- You are fashion director at Vogue India, celeb and movie stylist and a mom of two kids. How do you manage to multi task so well?

I don’t know the answer to that! I think good time management helps, stick to deadlines and have people respect your time as well. I think what makes it easy for me is that I love everything I do.

Cocktail releases July 13, 2012.

Bollywood Fashion: An introduction to Cocktail style

Bollywood Fashion: An introduction to Cocktail style

Talking fashion with Anaita Shroff Adajania is fun though a bit overwhelming. After all, she is fashion director for Vogue India and costume stylist for a bunch of movies, which kinda makes her an industry veteran.

So of course I was nervous when I spoke to her about fashion in Cocktail, her latest movie project. With her insights, I’ve put together a primer on key looks in the movie. Enjoy!

Cocktail- Deepaika Padukone, Saif Ali Khan, Diana Penty

(Psst… This is just a look-see into the movie, stay tuned for more Cocktail fashion over the next few days.)

Veronica (played by Deepika Padukone):

Deepika Padukone in Cocktail

Veronica is a fashion forward gal, though she doesn’t follow trends blindly. She enjoys looking good and being the centre of attention, even though she makes her style look completely effortless. She experiments by mixing high street fashion with designer wear and dressing according to her mood. So you never know what she’s going to wear next!

What she wears: Being a fun-loving girl in the movie, you will spot Deepika wearing off-shoulder tees, bold colours and prints, shorts, distressed jeans, designer bags and stacked accessories.

Deepika Padukone in Cocktail

Style in five words or less: Unpredictable, whimsical, fun!

What I like: The animal print cardigan and gold party dress.

Veronica’s fashion tip: Be your own person, folks! Pick up things you like- they could be from anywhere- and put your looks together.

Meera (played by Diana Penty):

Diana Penty in Cocktail

Meera is a middle-class girl from Delhi, hence her dressing style is a bit conservative- so you will see her in kurtas and patialas, and she probably still wears butterfly clips! She wants to blend in with the crowd, and will keep her arms and legs covered as much as possible. Even though she dresses for comfort, the layering makes her wardrobe exciting.

What she wears: Meera’s staples are a simple cardigan with chinos or flared jeans. Her prints are simple too- nautical stripes, polka dots and delicate florals.

Style in five words or less: Muted, feminine and understated.

Diana Penty- Saif Ali Khan in Cocktail

What I like: Layering cardigans over tees with skinny belts, comfy blouses and tees.

Meera’s fashion tip: Simplicity is never boring. Being conservative can be cool!

Gautam (played by Saif Ali Khan):

Gautam’s got a very casual approach to life and fashion. He wears a jacket to work only because he has to, and pairs it with a skinny tie. He probably doesn’t iron his clothes, and keeps it casual most times. He’s got the “lived-in” look.

Saif Ali Khan in Cocktail

What he wears: Saif’s character enjoys wearing old t-shirts, easy shirts, shorts and subtly distressed jeans.

Style in five words or less: Easy dressing!

What I like: Worn-out tees and shorts.

Gautam’s fashion tip: Wear your clothes with a bit of carelessness.

Which character’s look would you like to try?

Coming soon: Bollywood Fashion: The Anaita Shroff Adajania interview! stirs a heady fashion mix in Cocktail

Bollywood Fashion: Fashion in London Paris New York, Kahaani and Agent Vinod

Bollywood Fashion: Fashion in London Paris New York, Kahaani and Agent Vinod

Most Bollywood releases over the past few weeks have been quite unexciting on the fashion front—there have been no “Wow!” fashion moments or interesting looks that get me hooked in the promo itself. Even so, there’s been something noteworthy in some of the movies, so here’s a quick look at the fashion in London Paris New York, Kahaani and Agent Vinod.

London Paris New York

Ali Zafar plays the typical rich brat-cum-stud while Aditi Rao Hydari is the pseudo-bohemian feminist. They meet in the cities in distinctly different looks—from clean shaven to French beard for the guy, and from dishevelled hair to chic bob for her.

London Paris New York

Ali Zafar’s look: From funky tshirt to a more refined look with coordinated accessories—loved it!

Aditi Rao’s Hydari’s look: If you’ve seen the movie promo, you’ve seen it all. Interestingly, the makeup stays the same—the lips just morph into various shades of red (darkest in Paris).

What I liked: I absolutely loved Ali Zafar’s style statement in New York. Muffler, jacket and oh, that Hermes belt! Oooh, and I also loved his contrast collar shirt. Take a look:

London Paris New York

What I didn’t like: There was much more scope to experiment with Aditi Rao Hydari’s look, besides the hair and makeup. Very ordinary clothes, but maybe that was the point of the character.

Chic Tip: Get Ali Zafar’s shirt at Zara!

Zara contrast collar shirt

Fashion rating: 3.5/5


In a movie like Kahaani, there isn’t much scope for awesome fashion and styling. The costumes are well thought-out and appropriate for Vidya Bagchi’s simplicity- from the night wear (tshirt and pyjamas) to the long cotton dresses that a pregnant NRI woman may wear.

Vidya Balan in Kahaani

What I liked: The clever yet effortless layering (like a lace slip peeping out under maxi dress), simple unobtrusive prints, and use of high street brands like GAP. Designer Sabyasachi Mukherjee’s signature was all over Vidya Balan.

Vidya Balan in Kahaani

What I didn’t like: While the clothes in the movie aren’t glam or trendy, it’s because they are not supposed to be. The right costumes help in characterisation after all. So nope, nothing to dislike as such.

Fashion rating: 3.5/5

Agent Vinod

When a blue-blooded actor and his hot girlfriend star in a spy thriller shot across the world, you expect charm, mystique, charisma and dollops of style. Unfortunately didn’t get much of any of those things in Agent Vinod.

Saif Ali Khan- Kareena Kapoor in Agent Vinod

What I liked: Couple of Saif Ali Khan’s shirts (I believe some of them are from Arrow). Too bad he spent most of his time looking haggard. You see him at his stylish best(!) in the song Pyaar ki Pungi, which is not saying much at all. Kareena’s carrying some high fashion stuff like a Tod’s bag, and she looked the best in the auction wearing a very low-cut dress, covering up with piles of metallic gold necklaces.

Agent Vinod-Kareena Kapoor

What I didn’t like: While Kareena Kapoor looks great and clothes are quite alright, her wardrobe was inconsistent at best. She was completely unconvincing as a doctor, and her too-wide range of styles failed her character as well. And the bright pink sharara she wears in the mujra song Dil mera muft ka didn’t excite me at all. It was like been there, seen that! Manish Malhotra needs a break.

Agent Vinod-Kareena Kapoor mujra

Fashion rating: 3/5