A heavy dose of bling with a splattering of musicals is how Ritu Kumar served up the grand finale of WIFW.
Its a tad disappointing if at a pret event,you get a sighting of couture outfits,but when the grand old dame of Indian fashion,Ritu Kumar,takes the stage,its a grouse that gets drowned in the dramatic spectacle that follows. After the customary hour-long delay,when the grand finale finally got underway,we watched short films,listened to some old melodies such as Ajeeb daastan hai yeh and Baar baar dekho and cheered on as ballroom dancers twirled on the ramp. If youre wondering about the clothes,those were there too ostentatious and heavy on bling.
The show titled Art Deco Fables from the House of Ritu Kumar was divided into two parts the first half put Label Ritu Kumar on the runway and the second half (to our utter dismay) was Ritu Kumar Couture. Inspired by the Art Deco Movement of the 1920s,this collection was all about graphics. Soothing chiffons,silks,twill and crepes took over as models walked down the ramp in kaftans,short jackets,shorts,evening gowns,palazzos with tops and kurta-churidars. Beads and intricate embroidery on the waist and the shoulders seemed unnecessary add-ons on the ensembles. Video installations across the hall played a short film in which model Sonalika Sahay (obviously dressed in the Label) danced,giggled and flirted with her eyes interesting but a bit distracting.
That was not all. There was a lot more that Kumar had in store. Shammi Kapoors mischievous antics and his energetic dance moves on the small screens in the hall paved way for the live band and dancing couples on the ramp. Old world romance of colonial India was the theme and it was time for big red roses sitting prettily on tight hair buns,mascara eyes and rosy lips to do the talking. Models sashayed down the ramp in opulent lehengas and saris with golden brocade work and fat velvet borders. It was a predictable collection,but Kumar deserves credit for constant evolution as far as silhouettes are concerned lace churidars,layered gowns and ruffled short sleeves with sheer full sleeves attached.
Bollywood newbie Esha Gupta (of Jism 2 fame) was the showstopper to the disappointment of many. But then,a show with so much ornamentation with regard to the sets and music had little need for celebrity-quotient.
Rise And Shine
In February this year,in his Autumn-Winter collection,Jenjum Gadi revisited his home town Tirbin in Arunachal Pradesh to bring to the fore textiles,colours and beads from the region. His Spring-Summer collection,however,was poles apart. Titled An Ode to Gota,this was bright like a firecracker,dominated by colours such as purple,pink,yellow and green,along with gota dori as well as thick gota ribbons in gold and silver. It seemed he was making a point that gota,though used mostly in traditional outfits,can add a certain zing to Western and fusion silhouettes. So there were kaftans with trousers,shift dresses,jackets and kurtas some that had gota as an accessory,others that were completely made from gota. He gets full marks for giving a new lease of life to the good ol gota.
Though the duo has a store in Delhi,this was the first time their clothes were going to get a runway audience in the city and that factor,alone,lead to a packed house at Shivan & Narreshs show. After all,they are the creators and promoters of the famous bikini sari. Their collection Zip was inspired by the works of legendary American artist Barnett Newman,who was known most for the bold vertical lines in his paintings. The designers literally put Newman on their range of malliots,dresses,bikinis,shorts,shrugs,pants,shift dresses and the bikini sari. Retro sunglasses and vibrant colours such as green,red,yellow and orange added to the look and feel of the collection.