Stylists Manoshi and Rushi dug into their memories to design Kangana’s character in Queen. First she got over him and then she got over herself,” were the words that director Vikas Bahl said to us during Queen’s narration. It was like listening to our own story of heartbreak, transformation and liberation. According to him, we were the ones meant to design Queen, and Kangna Ranaut felt the same. We were between PK with Raju Hirani and Dhoom 3 — both big Aamir Khan films – when Queen came to us. Life was crazy at the time but letting Queen go was not an option.
Vikas’ brief was very clear — he knew what was the essence of Rani (Ranaut’s character), how she walks, talks, laughs and cries. Even small details such as how she runs when she is mugged in Paris, as opposed to the way she ran away from Vijay in the end to meet her friends at the rock concert. Our mantra was “authentic characterisation”. (Read Review: Kangana Ranaut steals the show in ‘Queen’)
After having read the script we sat down with Vikas and made a graph on Rani’s life. We broke it down to parts and each one had a different texture, colour and feel to it, and yet the transformation had to be without jerks. (Read: Express Lol review of Queen)
According to Vikas’ brief, this girl doesn’t know she has a beautiful body and she wears clothes to cover it and never to reveal her figure. Which is why when you see Rani in the beginning, she wears kurtis and tunics, which fall straight on her body, without any nips and tucks around the waist to reveal her curves. Once we move to Paris and Amsterdam, her clothes fall more beautifully on her.
The jeans have been the most difficult piece of garment for us to crack and get it right. Not only did it have an absolute wrong fit, it had bell at the bottom with a caprice length and even red roses appliqued on the thigh.
We all looked into our own pool of memories, looking for those strange pieces of clothing, which we shed along the way. When we put the Hungama kurti on Kangna, she looked in the mirror and said that this is how she dressed up in the small town she comes from. We also played with some layering — kurti with a beige sweater knitted by her mother probably or an ill-fitting denim jacket.
Our favourite two looks in Amsterdam are — the Alice in Wonderland sweatshirt, which is a subtext that we wanted to put and surprise the viewer. And two, the confident yet angelic neckline dipping ivory and ashes-of-roses lace climax dress. From a girl who clumsily ran for her life from a pickpocket to a girl who confidently strides to a rock show – her journey was complete. And it comes full circle at the airport where she steps out to meet her parents in a trendy, Pakistani designer kurti.
Kangna is a superb actor and her workshops, her own stories from the small town in Himachal Pradesh that she belongs to, helped us a lot in framing the character. The film is very close to us since it is about the princess in all of us. As stylists, we are incomplete without each other. We have parallel lives with identical stories happening in different spaces. And one day those spaces merged and we started our company, Fools Paradise. After our two films, Khosla ka Ghosla and Oye Lucky, Lucky Oye, we started refusing Delhi-based films. We just did not want to repeat ourselves. But Queen got us.
(By: Stylists Manoshi & Rushi)