Calcutta got a glimpse of Sabyasachi Mukherjee’s New York (Olympus Fashion Week) line. In a striking palette of black, grey, khaki and olive with touches of red and gold, the out-and-out international line comprised frocks, pinafores, trench coats, blousons and long gowns. The line boasted signature Sabya elements — prints, cuts and details.
Rohit Bal drew the curtains on the evening and ensured that the audience left the venue with a “wow” on their lips. With a sequence that rocked from the beginning with the trademark ivory-and-gold combo, Rohit unveiled the only bridal line of the show. The highlights were the swirling, voluminous lehngas teamed with corsets and cholis, while the men stood out in exquisite sherwanis paired with pyjamas. The off-whites and ivories gave way to darker maroons, as the lehngas slimmed down in the later part of the collection. Rohit’s signature gold leaf prints in floral and bird motifs and heavy embroidery embellished the collection. “It’s a bridal line with a difference,” is how Rohit defined it.
Some Mumbaiya drama from Sabina Singh added the much-needed zing. A phuchkawala, a chaiwala and a chanawala did the rounds; models — hair tied with colourful ribbons — paraded ethnic wear in a riot of Indian hues, script prints, panel work, rose motifs and polkas; and the music drew on Bollywood retro like Mera joota hai Japani. High-point: A model in a floral-printed white sari made an entry in a cycle rickshaw. The collection called Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani sure lived up to its name.
Designer duo Shantanu & Nikhil Mehra showcased a mix of men’s and women’s wear in a line titled Naughty Harem. Sherwanis, short jackets, kurtas and drapes for men boasted the maharaja look, while the women sported cocktail saris with a vintage look. Lots of browns and gold, with a touch of pastels, coloured the collection.
Kiran Uttam Ghosh unveiled a refreshing line in silver grey and white, with metallic shine being the defining look. Dresses, boleros, jackets, shirts, leggings, churi pants and more were embellished with metallic gold or silver work. High necklines, geometric prints and pile-ons were some of the highlights.
Bollywood’s ace designer Aki Narula presented an all-black glamorous line of winter party wear. Lots of high-waisted dresses, skirts, leggings and boleros made up the collection. Tonal embellishments and texturisation defined the look, with touches of cutwork, mirrorwork and beadwork enhancing it.
Aparna Chandra showcased an impressive pret line with a girlie look. Red-and-white polkas, black-and-white checks, subtle tonal embroidery and sheers were some of the high points. The line was made up of separates — just-below-the-knee dresses, culottes, skirts, tops, jackets and tunics. Reds, blacks and creams formed the palette.
Stark in its simplicity, Vivek Narang’s collection entirely in black drew inspiration from the Suzani textile form of Central Asia. This was carried out in the single motif — cotton thread embroidery in either red-yellow-pink or white-green-orange — that embellished all the outfits, in different placements. Raw silk formed the base fabric.
Couture jeweller Raj Mahtani started the show with a line of almost-regal ornaments. Raj’s signature uncut stones — emeralds, rubies and more — set in gold, made up the bold avant-garde pieces. The stress was on the neck and the waist as several strands of jewels circled these, lending a larger-than-life feel.
A toned-down palette of whites, beiges, blacks and greys with dashes of pink coloured Gaurav Gupta’s collection inspired by “ancient European cultures”. Floral embroidery in metallic hues, flowy sensuous fabrics, asymmetrical hemlines made this a super-feminine line. Dresses, with some pleating and ruching, and saris, with innovation on the pallas, dominated the collection.
“The collection is very over-the-top by my standards,” said Anamika Khanna. And so it was. A dash of shine and shimmer and bright hues presented a dramatic line. The collection stood out for the sheer variety of silhouettes — from long floor-kissing coats to calf-length dresses, wrap-tops, shirts, loose pants, churi pants, leggings and more. Anamika’s signature texturisation and pile-on technique were also visible. Hints of gold embroidery upped the glam quotient.