Despite disparities in spending power and taste,buyers of Indian fashion can be easily deconstructed. Especially now that the market is like a young adult having left its juvenile dilemmas behind. Designer duo Shantanu and Nikhil seem to have further simplified this deconstruction. Their show,which kicked off the Autumn-Winter 2012 edition of the Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week at Pragati Maidan in Delhi on Wednesday,was to use a tired expression besotted with cling and bling. Saleable,wearable and marketable garments under the label S&N Drape came down the ramp,brightening up the mildly cold February afternoon but dulling the anticipation for something new,something surprising and something unseen.
Bling was outspoken and bold; it made a good case for itself. Gold,glitter and bronze,sequins and lace,fitted drapes,sensuous cuts,embroidery and cutwork. If you cared for a blazing bolt of colour,there was an unapologetically brash orange. If nude provokes your style,oh,there was enough to keep you engrossed through both autumn and winter. There was something for the socialite,the red carpet diva,the bride-to-be,the model and the memsahib. Everything and more that the Indian market believes is fashion was there in this collection. This was also its limitation. It failed to offer a comment or mentor a new idea for a fashion devotee.
It is easy to see why Shantanu and Nikhil are very successful,why they will always find sponsors and Bollywood show-stoppers when they need them. Arguably,it would be difficult to look uncool in a S&N Drape. Itd also be difficult to look distinctive. There is an aesthetic but without a strong language. The garments are excellently finished but without a remarkably wondrous presence. Dia Mirza and Sameera Reddy may not agree. Both looked cheerful and charming as the designers called them from the front row to walk down the ramp for the final bow. Good fashion,maybe. Not great.
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