LFW W/F 2011 Day 5: Aneeth Arora layers again, Kallol Dutta loves geometry

On the closing day of Lakme Fashion Week Winter/Festive 2011, Aneeth Arora artfully used fabrics from across India for her trademark layered creations. Meanwhile, Kallol Dutta showcased geometry in his collection in more ways than one.

Pero by Aneeth Arora
Aneeth Arora’s collection at LFW W/F 2011 was an advanced lesson in mix-and-match. She mixed fabrics, silhouettes and colours as she layered a whole range of garments in her show.

Model at Pero by Aneeth Arora LFW W/F 2011 Model at Pero by Aneeth Arora LFW W/F 2011

The young designer highlighted the skills of Indian weavers, using fabrics from different regions of India. It wasn’t just her favourite khadi that we saw, but also kota, doria, chanderi, linen and wool, all expertly layered for cooler weather. She mixed textures and silhouettes from the onset—the opening model wore a crochet baniyan with a khadi skirt, chanderi shirt and jamdani scarf.

Model at Pero by Aneeth Arora LFW W/F 2011

We enjoyed the choice of colours, that included peach, lilac, wine, ash, brick, rose and military green that were fused together as simple shirts, structured trousers, jackets, jumpsuits, and even shrugs and overcoats.

Model at Pero by Aneeth Arora LFW W/F 2011 Model at Pero by Aneeth Arora LFW W/F 2011

While layering is not new to Aneeth Arora or to the fashion world, we noted that this clever layering was something we could keep in mind for next summer as well.

Kallol Dutta 1955
The word “unconventional” best describes designer Kallol Dutta, and while his colour palette is usually monotonous, his outfits are striking and impactful.

In a seemingly simple collection, Kallol gave his own twist to simple garments like jackets, dresses and trousers. The prints were seemingly taken from a high school geometry book, and detailing like braids, tiny pleats, frayed edges and tassles made all the difference.

Model at Kallol Dutta LFW W/F 2011 Model at Kallol Dutta LFW W/F 2011

Kallol used wool, wool blends, silk, satins, nets, voiles, kora silks, gauze and calico in black and white (with hints of blue and pink) for garments like palazzo pants, multiple hoodie, disjointed waistcoat and askew dress.

Model at Kallol Dutta LFW W/F 2011 Model at Kallol Dutta LFW W/F 2011

Yes, unconventional is the right word for Kallol Dutta. We could also add quirky, crazy and out-of-the-box to the list.

LFW W/F 2011 Day 5: Digvijay Singh stays true to organic Bhu:sattva, Vivek Kumar prepares for inner battle

From ethical fashion to fashion designed for a revolution, Digvijay Singh for Bhu:sattva and Vivek Kumar presented collections that gave us plenty of food for thought on Day 5 of Lakme Fashion Week Winter/Festive 2011.

Digvijay Singh for Bhu:sattva
With its certified organic fabrics, Bhu:sattva stands for ethical fashion and for the brand’s Geometrees collection at LFW W/F 2011, designer Digvijay Singh used natural vegetable dyes and block prints on saris and drapes.

Model at Digvijay Singh for Bhusattva at LFW W/F 2011 Model at Digvijay Singh for Bhusattva at LFW W/F 2011

Digvijay Singh combined botanical and floral embroidery with Mughal geometry to create gorgeous, yet simple saris. Gujarat’s khatla embroidery was extensively used with detailing on on shoulders, sleeves and back. Small beads, applique and cutwork broke the monotony, as did the two-toned checks and saris in colours like brown, black, blue and green.

Model at Digvijay Singh for Bhusattva at LFW W/F 2011 Model at Digvijay Singh for Bhusattva at LFW W/F 2011

We enjoyed the collection for its immense wearability and versatility.

Vivek Kumar
My thoughts as the first outfit of the show appeared on the ramp: “The designer’s got to have a creatively twitsted mind!”

Model at Vivek Kumar LFW W/F 2011 Model at Vivek Kumar LFW W/F 2011

It isn’t easy to describe Vivek Kumar’s collection. There were dresses and gowns, but it wasn’t just about the outfits. Nor was it about the knitted bonnets with spiky studded projections. It was about all the small things that made Antarkranti (inner revolution) an astounding collection. Model at Vivek Kumar LFW W/F 2011 Model at Vivek Kumar LFW W/F 2011

The models were geared up for battle in fluid silhouettes in sombre colours like black, grey and steel that made way for green, orange and rust. Steel studs, zippers and sprays of sequins adorned the nets, knits and batik fabrics. The detached long sleeves, knee high stockings, hand knitting and inserted stitches added to the drama on the ramp.

Model at Vivek Kumar LFW W/F 2011

The clothes weren’t meant for immediate retail, but Vivek Kumar’s innovative approach is bound to be loved by fashion lovers everywhere.

LFW W/F 2011 Day 4: Drashta makes waves, Rehane presents unfinished garments

Drashta
Marine life has served as inspiration to fashion designers since aeons, and Drashta Sarvaiya is among the most recent ones to have caught the bait (pun intended). At her show at Lakme Fashion Week Winter/Festive 2011, Drashta’s focus on marine life reflected in the fluid silhouettes, shell cut-outs and motifs, marine prints and colours that reflect the ocean (think aqua and sea green).

Model at Drashta LFW W/F 2011 Model at Drashta LFW W/F 2011

But that wasn’t all. Drashta also played with colours and detailing as she introduced pastels (mauve, pink) and neons (electric, fuchsia) on one-shoulder short and halter neck dresses with touches like capes and crystals.

Model at Drashta LFW W/F 2011 Model at Drashta LFW W/F 2011

The most interesting bit of her collection was the expert ruching along with the quirky accessories placed on the waist and neck. The accessories were handmade pieces created from pearl finish and hot neon leather, and coral shell and fish cut-outs. Cute!

Rehane
Rehane, the designer known for her baby doll and cocktail dresses, dared to step out of her comfort zone at Lakme Fashion Week Winter/Festive 2011 with a new concept. This all-white collection was created with raw mulmul and kora fabrics and left unfinished with notes to tailors for alterations. (You could read “Check line” and “Cut here” on skirts and blouses).

Model at Rehane LFW W/F 2011 Model at Rehane LFW W/F 2011

The models walked barefoot on the ramp in slow motion, their limbs, faces and hair covered in talcum powder. Rehane later said her collection was inspired by the purity of a woman “Meera”. But we also felt that somewhere among the purity was the woman who is lost, struggling to hold on to her innocence and on the verge of being delusional.

Despite the blank colour palette, Rehane had worked meticulously on garment construction and detailing. There were rouches, gathers and pleats on blouses and yokes, uneven hemlines and even cholis with cowls. Silhouettes were mixed, as a tunic was paired with a pencil skirt and a loose cover-up had an empire line gathered body.

Model at Rehane LFW W/F 2011 Model at Rehane LFW W/F 2011

We left the show with mixed feelings—a tinge of sadness (the mood was sombre), but happy because we had just seen a designer’s fresh take on fashion.

Chic Finds: Fun prints on dresses, tees and shoes to lift your mood

It’s raining outside now and how! If you’re stuck indoors most of the time, you need some cheering up. Speaking Chic brings some fun prints to excite you in this gloomy weather.

Nature-inspired prints

Bright leaves, butterflies and peacocks… indoors or outdoors, wear nature on your sleeve.

Funky prints from nature

Above (from left to right): Printed dress from Golmaal, red top and printed shorts from Roxy, dress from Vizyon’s Papagayo collection

Graphic prints

Still bang-on-trend, abstract or otherwise. We love these in colours that pop.

Tank Top with graphic print from Benetton

Printed shorts from Roxy

Above: Tank top with graphic print from Benetton; shorts from Roxy.

Printed accessories!

Make printed shoes, bags and scarves your new best friend. 🙂

Miss Sixty shoes Flip-flops from Roxy

Above: Clarisse shoes (flats) from Miss Sixty, Flip flops from Roxy

How to wear prints

If you think you might end up looking like a fancy teapot or a mural with prints, here’s some tips for wearing prints from Kanika Kapoor, a fashionista associated with Emilio Pucci (a brand known for its prints).

  • It’s not difficult to carry off prints, though you need to complement the prints or tone down the print with plain colour footwear. And oh, avoid over-accessorizing.
  • At present I’m really into accessorising what I wear with printed scarves and shawls. Also, I like “printed” shoes with a plain dress or relaxed day wear.
  • You can also tie a printed scarf around your bag to add a touch of print to your attire.

How are you wearing prints this monsoon?

Chic Insider: Big B’s Bbuddah… fashion story (by stylist Leepakshi Ellawadi)

If you’ve seen Amitabh Bachchan in the promos of the upcoming movie Bbuddah… hoga terra baap, you’ve seen his brand-new look: bold, striking, even quirky. There are bright colours, eye-catching prints and funky accessories (think green glares and yellow scarf).

Bbuddah hoga terra baap stylist Leepakshi Ellawadi Leepakshi Ellawadi, a sub-30 Mumbai-based fashion designer is behind the much-talked-about look. Her creativity has come full circle since her days in NIFT Bangalore, where she won the Best Design Collection award for her Hindi film-inspired collection (starring mostly Amitabh Bachchan).

As costume stylist for Big B in Bbuddah…, Leepakshi has come a very long way in a very short time. In an interview with Speaking Chic, Leepakshi narrates the story behind the fashion and costumes of Mr Bachchan in the movie.

Understanding Amitabh Bachchan’s character
The director Puri Jagannadh didn’t tell me the kind of look he wanted for the movie’s lead character. All I got were some CDs with his dialogues and character sketch. Mr Bachchan’s character is an ex-gangster in India for a mission. He’s sarcastic, outlandish and likes to be the centre of attention. Most importantly, he doesn’t believe he’s old, and doesn’t like being called “Bbuddah”.

Peeking into Amitabh Bachchan’s wardrobe
The first-look trial with Mr Bachchan went well. I discovered that he’s experimental and open to new ideas, and was surprised with the range of garments and accessories in his wardrobe. I absolutely loved his pair of tiger-print jeans which is nothing less than a work of art.

Costume concepts
Mr Bachchan and I sat together to discuss every scene of Bbuddah… hoga terra baap. As we evolved the looks, I realised that I needed to strike a balance between the character’s flamboyance and the essence of the scene.

Amitabh Bachchan in Bbuddah hoga terra baapSo even though I’ve experimented with colours and prints, I used mix and match, pairing the brights with more subdued tones. We needed to make sure everything’s in sync and nothing clashes. Even the inner linings of jackets are reds and greens. We teamed prints with contrasting shirts. For example, I’ve used a bright turquoise and shirt with a black body.

 

Shopping with Mr Bachchan
Mr Bachchan and I went shopping for the movie in London for 10 days, my look sheets in hand. He helped me a lot, telling me what he liked, even as people asked him for autographs and pictures.

We shopped at Harrod’s, Armani, Burberry, Tom Ford, Hugo Boss, Paul Smith, Gucci and Etro.

Amitabh Bachchan in Bbuddah hoga terra baap Amitabh Bachchan in Bbuddah hoga terra baap

About the famous glares—several of them are Mr Bachchan’s personal collection, handmade and handcrafted, and cost around Rs 15-20 lakh each. [Speaking Chic note: OMG, really?] I also used my personal collection of Pucci and Etro scarves that I’ve garnered over the years. and Mr Bachchan’s personal collection of watches in the movie.

Prints galore!
Amitabh Bachchan in Bbuddah hoga terra baap1

Print-on-print is bang on trend right now, and Mr Bachchan wanted me to make some such pieces. I had some fabric from Chennai lying with me, so I made a piece for him. (He’s wearing that piece in Rang barse in the movie.)  The prints are mostly florals and paisleys and “engineered” prints.

The Big B experience
Leepakshi Ellawadi with Amitabh Bachchan for Bbuddah hoga terra baapIt has been an amazing experience working with Amitabh Bachchan—like living a dream. Early on in the shoot, when I’d knot Mr Bachchan’s scarf, my hands would shake. One day he grabbed my hand and asked why they shook. “It’s you!” I replied.

Thanks to Amitabh Bachchan for being so patient and stylish—he’s anyway so stylish,  he made my job a cakewalk!

Bbuddah… hoga terra baap releases July 1, 2011.

Chic Insider: Big B’s Bbuddah… fashion story (by stylist Leepakshi Ellawadi)

If you’ve seen Amitabh Bachchan in the promos of the upcoming movie Bbuddah… hoga terra baap, you’ve seen his brand-new look: bold, striking, even quirky. There are bright colours, eye-catching prints and funky accessories (think green glares and yellow scarf).

Bbuddah hoga terra baap stylist Leepakshi Ellawadi Leepakshi Ellawadi, a sub-30 Mumbai-based fashion designer is behind the much-talked-about look. Her creativity has come full circle since her days in NIFT Bangalore, where she won the Best Design Collection award for her Hindi film-inspired collection (starring mostly Amitabh Bachchan).

As costume stylist for Big B in Bbuddah…, Leepakshi has come a very long way in a very short time. In an interview with Speaking Chic, Leepakshi narrates the story behind the fashion and costumes of Mr Bachchan in the movie.

Understanding Amitabh Bachchan’s character
The director Puri Jagannadh didn’t tell me the kind of look he wanted for the movie’s lead character. All I got were some CDs with his dialogues and character sketch. Mr Bachchan’s character is an ex-gangster in India for a mission. He’s sarcastic, outlandish and likes to be the centre of attention. Most importantly, he doesn’t believe he’s old, and doesn’t like being called “Bbuddah”.

Peeking into Amitabh Bachchan’s wardrobe
The first-look trial with Mr Bachchan went well. I discovered that he’s experimental and open to new ideas, and was surprised with the range of garments and accessories in his wardrobe. I absolutely loved his pair of tiger-print jeans which is nothing less than a work of art.

Costume concepts
Mr Bachchan and I sat together to discuss every scene of Bbuddah… hoga terra baap. As we evolved the looks, I realised that I needed to strike a balance between the character’s flamboyance and the essence of the scene.

Amitabh Bachchan in Bbuddah hoga terra baapSo even though I’ve experimented with colours and prints, I used mix and match, pairing the brights with more subdued tones. We needed to make sure everything’s in sync and nothing clashes. Even the inner linings of jackets are reds and greens. We teamed prints with contrasting shirts. For example, I’ve used a bright turquoise and shirt with a black body.

 

Shopping with Mr Bachchan
Mr Bachchan and I went shopping for the movie in London for 10 days, my look sheets in hand. He helped me a lot, telling me what he liked, even as people asked him for autographs and pictures.

We shopped at Harrod’s, Armani, Burberry, Tom Ford, Hugo Boss, Paul Smith, Gucci and Etro.

Amitabh Bachchan in Bbuddah hoga terra baap Amitabh Bachchan in Bbuddah hoga terra baap

About the famous glares—several of them are Mr Bachchan’s personal collection, handmade and handcrafted, and cost around Rs 15-20 lakh each. [Speaking Chic note: OMG, really?] I also used my personal collection of Pucci and Etro scarves that I’ve garnered over the years. and Mr Bachchan’s personal collection of watches in the movie.

Prints galore!
Amitabh Bachchan in Bbuddah hoga terra baap1

Print-on-print is bang on trend right now, and Mr Bachchan wanted me to make some such pieces. I had some fabric from Chennai lying with me, so I made a piece for him. (He’s wearing that piece in Rang barse in the movie.)  The prints are mostly florals and paisleys and “engineered” prints.

The Big B experience
Leepakshi Ellawadi with Amitabh Bachchan for Bbuddah hoga terra baapIt has been an amazing experience working with Amitabh Bachchan—like living a dream. Early on in the shoot, when I’d knot Mr Bachchan’s scarf, my hands would shake. One day he grabbed my hand and asked why they shook. “It’s you!” I replied.

Thanks to Amitabh Bachchan for being so patient and stylish—he’s anyway so stylish,  he made my job a cakewalk!

Bbuddah… hoga terra baap releases July 1, 2011.

Chic Friday Fun: Prints you never thought you’d see or wear

Move over the “Little Miss” tshirt series (Little Miss Chatterbox etc), and Wake Up Sid’s Garfield tshirts. We’ve dug up some prints you never thought you’d ever see, let alone wear. But they’re out there, they’re fun, and you can actually wear some of them!

We picked out some fun prints and object motifs and rated them on wearability on a scale of 1 to 5 (1 being not at all wearable, 5 being totally wearable!).

Autorickshaws

Sabah Khan’s Sabashe collection at Lakme Fashion Week Summer/Resort 2011 was kitschy chic (tongue twister!) and inspired by Mumbai’s public transport, especially the rickshaws aka ricks. Ricks appeared on tops, pants, skirts and even waist pouches!

Sabah Khan autorickshaw printed skirt LFW S/R 2011

Wearability Rating: 3.5/ 5

Shells

Why go to the beach to collect shells when they can come to you? (Playsuit from French Connection).

French Connection Siera Shell Playsuit

Wearability Rating: 3/5

Bicycles

With yet another mode of transport, Nida Mahmood’s Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2011 collection was about the Indian roadie, with the bicycle representing the common man. Paired with the designer’s signature bags in shocking pink and turmeric yellow, it was a casual Indian summer look.

Nida Mahmood WIFW S/S 2011

Wearability Rating: 3/5

Parrots

Mango continues its animal print series this summer with some more exotic creatures, such as this parrot. Check out the the brightly-coloured bird nestling among the leaves on this tshirt.

Mango parrot tshirt

Wearability Rating: 4/5

Doordarshan!

Only the Tantra guys could have come up with this one. LOL.

Tantra Doordarshan tshirt

Wearability Rating: 2.5/5

Which of these prints would you like to wear?

WIFW A/W 2011: Top Day 2 trends

Here’s a quick recap of the leading trends seen on the ramps of Day 2 of Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week Autumn/Winter 2011.

Prints

Prints were seen across a number of shows, but Rahul Singh’s prints predominantly sea blue and white prints were our favourite. We also liked Charu Parashar’s circular  and abstract prints that were shaded grey to black.

Below: Rahul Singh, Charu Parashar

Rahul Singh at WIFW A/W 2011 Charu Parashar at WIFW A/W 2011

Natural inspirations

While Payal Jain sought inspirations from the five elements of nature with different colour and print stories for each element, Joy Mitra mixed earthy tones like black and brown with maroons, indigos and sap green.

Below: Payal Jain, Joy Mitra

Payal Jain at WIFW A/W 2011 Joy Mitra at WIFW A/W 2011

Embellishments and detailing

We flipped for Zurhke’s thread and laser-cut felt floral embroidery on kaftans, jackets and kurtas. Jaya Rathore used handcrafted Spanish lace in her line along with cross stitched motifs and threadwork on fine fabrics.

Below: Zurhke by Rajdeep Ranawat and Naresh Chauhan, Jaya Rathore

Zurhke at WIFW A/W 2011 Jaya Rathore at WIFW A/W 2011

International influences

Jaya Rathore brought Spain on the ramp (picture above), while Ashima-Leena’s collection had a strong tribal and gypsy influence. Kavita Bhartia’s line had a Victorian and gothic feel.

Below: Ashima-Leena, Kavita Bhartia

Ashima-Leena at WIFW A/W 2011 Kavita Bhartia at WIFW A/W 2011

Layering

Layering is a key element of winter dressing, and several Day 2 designers used some form of layering to style their models. At Label by Ritu Kumar, asymmetric layering was seen with models wore shorter jackets over longer kurtas and vice versa. At Saaj by Ankita tulle was used to create interesting layers.

Below: Label by Ritu Kumar, Saaj by Ankita

Label by Ritu Kumar at WIFW A/W 2011 Saaj by Ankita at WIFW A/W 2011

LFW: Highlights of Day 4

The fourth day of Lakme Fashion Week Summer/Resort 2011 was a mixed bag—with fun fashion and some disappointments.

Floral fiesta

It was mid-March, and the mercury was rising in Mumbai, even as the fashion was getting summery. We saw the eternal summer favourite floral prints taking to the ramp. Purvi Doshi presented great summer florals while Cantabil designs got an edgier twist. And at Anupamaa Dayal the bright florals were mixed and matched with colour and print blocks on saris, kaftans and dresses, creating a very sunny atmosphere in the main show area.

(Below left to right:  Purvi Doshi, Cantabil styled by Rocky S, Anupamaa Dayal).

Purvi Doshi at LFW S/R 2011 Cantabil styled by Rocky S LFW S/R 2011 Anupamaa Dayal at LFW S/R 2011

Funky prints ruled

Like we noted above, florals got a fun twist. But that was just one of the prints we saw on the ramp. Sabah Khan’s rickshaw-inspired prints were kitschy yet wearable. And the inimitable Kallol Dutta got cheeky with a print inspired by leading fashion journalist Sathya Saran (she’s ex-editor of Femina). Take a look.

(Below left to right: Sabah Khan, Kallol Dutta)

Sabah Khan at LFW S/R 2011 Kallol Dutta at LFW S/R 2011

More fun stuff for guys

So it turns out that Indian guys will have an amazing range of clothes to choose from this summer. While Day 2 of Lakme Fashion Week Summer/ Resort 2011 had some good clothes for guys, the Cantabil and Sanjay Hingu collections on Day 4 added to their list of summer sartorial choices.

Sanjay Hingu presented a pastel colour palette for men, focussing on soft blue suits, jackets and trousers, with Rocky S styling the Cantabil men in pastel-coloured suits. One-button suits were another common link. Meanwhile Cantabil had a vibrant colour range for polo tshirts, and it was fun to see the guys in bright-coloured bermudas and trousers.

(Below left to right: Sanjay Hingu, Cantabil styled by Rocky S)

Sanjay Hingu at LFW S/R 2011 Cantabil by Rocky S at LFW S/R 2011

Lots of chic vacation wear

When I go on holiday this year, maybe I’ll ditch the convenient jeans-and-tee combo, and look at options for a relaxed chic look. In international fashion markets, this is often called resort wear, and I think it’s a great idea for the hot Indian summer, irrespective of whether you’re going on vacation or not.

I loved Anupamaa Dayal’s colourful printed kaftans in pinks and oranges, and Pria Kataria Puri evoked a Marrakesh atmosphere with exotic prints, mirror work and crystal-embellished kaftans, maxis and tunics that you could wear to a party.

(Below left to right: Anupamaa Dayal, Pria Kataria Puri)

Anupamaa Dayal at LFW S/R 2011 Pria Kataria Puri at LFW S/R 2011

Been there, seen that

At a show titled The Future of Fashion, what would you expect? Futuristic design, oodles of creativity, refreshing styles, right? Unfortunately, at this DHL-inspired show designers Atsu Sekhose and Kallol Dutta presented clothes that were mostly insipid and well, not futuristic or mindboggling at all. As a fashion watcher later told me, “What future of fashion? The show was more about the past of fashion.” LOL. (Take a peek and decide for yourself).

(Below left to right: Atsu, Kallol Dutta)

Atsu Sekhose at LFW S/R 2011 Kallol Dutta at LFW S/R 2011