Like every year,Tarun Tahiliani promised his 1000-odd guests that the finale will be a grand affair. So it was,with the funnel-shaped entrance through which the models emerged from behind a smoky screen,leaving the well-heeled front row comprising the grand-dame of herbal cosmetics,Shahnaz Husain,television star Gauhar Khan,Kiran Nadar,HCL founder Shiv Nadars wife,designer Gitanjali Kashyap and her husband Sumeet Nair gasping. Meanwhile,Tahilianis wife Sailaja,kitted in a leopard print sari by the designer,played the perfect host.
The collection titled New Democracy with 60-odd looks,came with promises of a fuller volume and longer length,and a defined bias towards couture than pret. The skirts were heavily pleated,jackets layered; there were corset kurtas and churidars,ala Umrao Jaan. Actor and model-at-large Chitrangada Singh walked down in a silk sari cinched at the waist. Other notable ensembles included keyhole-cut gowns,printed tunics worn with wrap tops and silk jackets paired with sarongs.
After the western outfits which won praise from a gaggle of high-profile buyers,the coy brides took over. Models walked out in kurtas worn with velvet corsets,with epaulette-detailing on shoulders,and panelled lehengas worn with gauzy kurtis and Nehru jackets. Finally,it was Tahilianis muse,actor Shilpa Shetty who walked out to the song Ali sung by 40-odd Barmer musicians sitting in the wings. Trussed in a voluminous lehenga and an embroidered bodice,she sent the crowd in a photo-clicking frenzy. Every time,I walk for him,he seems to bring out a different avatar in me, smiled Shetty,post the show. For Tahiliani,Shetty is always 21. Dishing out the tired rhetoric,Shetty blithely admitted to being a Tahiliani fan. His cuts are western,but the look is ethnic. Im always enamoured by his clothes, she said.