Soumitra Mondol, Dev, Nil, Agnimitra Paul, Vivek Kumar and Kallol Datta on Park Street.
Most commercial collection
Easy. Thats the word for Vivek Kumars collections this season. His current Westside line and his personal label for next season were both as commercial as any fashion week collection can be. The knitwear graduate did some simple stuff with relaxed lines, not-so-fussy silhouettes and cool colours. But commercial doesnt mean boring. Vivek has learnt to add a trendy twist to the tale with some drapes and cowls, all within his style story of course. This collection is all ready for the rack directly from the ramp.
This National Institute of Fashion Technology and Central Saint Martins student has everything going for him. And he is the undisputed winner of the most promising collection award from t2 simply because he is the most promising designer. His clothes are not pretty. They are pretty revolutionary. He doesnt do embroidery and bling. Hed much rather grab eyeballs with a super silhouette, the patterns of which he cuts himself and often stitches too. From greys and blacks to blood red and bright orange, his colour palette widened this season as did his popularity and business. If theres one designer whose career you should watch out for, its his.
|(top) Poonam and
Shatrughan Sinha (below) Steve Waugh (in blue) and Sabyasachi Mukherjee (bearded)
Best front row
DEV R NIL
In fashion, style is not the only cyclical element. Everything that surrounds it comes around, too. Some seasons its showstoppers on the ramp, other seasons it is the showstoppers off it. Since the beginning of the year, the trend tide has favoured the off-the-ramp variety, also called front-row showstoppers. Basically, these are pretty people (actresses, socialites, sports stars, foreigners — buyers or not — or fellow designers) who sit stylishly in the audience. Sometimes they clap at every alternate garment and sometimes they sit still with a pasted plastic smile.
Our vote for the best front row goes to Dev R Nil. One word for their FR: eclectic! Shatrughan Sinha who came with a battalion of friends and family (wife Poonam, Ila Arun, Arbaaz Khan, Jackie Shroff, Rohit Roy, Kiran Juneja…) to cheer daughter Sonakshis ramp debut sat across Steve Waugh who came to catch some serious style.
Made in India Collection
From the first second to the last, Soumitras show was all Made in India. A short film titled Khadi that the designer borrowed from Youtube opened the show with immediate effect. At once, you travelled back a few decades with the khadi weavers. Mood set, the garments appeared. Modern Indian silhouettes and modern Indian music (three fantastic pieces by Bickram Ghosh) came together for a very Proud India moment. Heres why, he says: International buyers come to India not for jackets and suits. Armani and Calvin Klein can make them better. They come to India in search of India. Now, thats a thought.
This one is a Razzy! The spelling of her name is not the only thing that has changed. The designer went from Jyoti to Jyotee and almost immediately her style sensibility also did an about-turn! Her inspiration switched from Nim Sood (K-serial stylist) to Bauhaus! She ditched those crystal-laden rainbow saris and came out with a controlled-colour collection. But sadly, it was way too pretentious to let it slide. The silhouettes were rehashed from other designers, many from her Calcutta colleagues. Somehow, the story just didnt fit and feel right. We suggest she go back to saris. Cool aint for everyone.
Collection with a conscience
She wanted to do a collection with a cause and sometime during her search, emotion crept in. After seeing visually-challenged children study, Agni decided to dedicate a collection to them and used Braille as her collections mainstay. Her show opened with some audio-visual clips that showed glimpses from a Calcutta school for the blind that brought tears to many eyes. Braille appeared on the garments with English letters bringing out the difference between the two worlds. Her final bow with two blind girls earned mixed reactions. Some felt that it was too much, some thought it was a publicity stunt, but Agni thought there was nothing wrong with it: The girls were happy to be on the ramp and their parents were proud.
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