A Fling with Bling

Gauri Deshpande’s soon-to-open store has a collection of festive and wedding wear that flaunt an innate traditional sensibility

Written by Prajakta Hebbar | Published:September 11, 2013 3:42 am

In a market saturated with bridal wear — which also passes off as couture — 23-year-old Gauri Deshpande’s new brand,Zari by Gauri,looks promising. Her store,located in a quiet,winding lane behind the British Library,will have a formal opening on Sunday,September 15.

As we walked into the plush 2,300 sq ft store,we could not but miss the scarlet signboard with gold letters. The store is done up in warm brown and gold,with a couple of vintage pieces of furniture strewn around artistically,along with faceless mannequins donning Deshpande’s outfits. We particularly liked the deep red,plush,oversized Ottoman placed near the racks of saris.

Young Deshpande’s first collection consists of ethnic wear — mostly salwar-kameez sets,lehengas and anarkalis. The colour palette is very summery — think designs in pinks and yellows,flirting with deep gold embroidery and sparkling embellishments. The lehenga-paired-with-kurta outfits were particularly enamouring. A chiffon and net lehenga with hand embroidery was paired with a flowing well-cut kurta. The kurta was part chiffon and part net,to ensure that the one wearing it will sport a subtle yet sexy,almost midriff-baring,look.

Among other things,we were impressed by a range of anarkali and lehenga outfits that revolved around a cotton and net/chiffon combination. While the cotton kurta had quaint floral prints,it was also covered with flowing net on top,from just below the bust line. The combination made for a refreshing change.

While,in all honesty,there might be nothing ground-breaking about Deshpande’s designs,we appreciate the fact that all her works showcase an innate Marathi sensibility. Deshpande’s maiden collection,which obviously flits the line between festive and wedding wear (she’s yet to touch trousseaux) also comes at an apt time,when most Indian festivals are round the corner.

The price tag for her collection will appeal to most shoppers — kurtas start at Rs 3,000,anarkalis at Rs 10,000,and the more intricate lehengas are priced at Rs 25,000 and more. You can also catch up with Deshpande,who will give you tips about drapes and fits.

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