Rahul Mishra showcased an uncharacteristic collection on Saturday at the FDCI India Couture Week 2022 in association with Lotus Make-up. His ‘The Tree of Life’ was doused in gold and shimmery sequins. Rahul sent out a bold line at the The Embassy of France, New Delhi, high on drama. In fact, each and every piece was a statement. From bodysuits to lehngas, from dresses to saris and suits. Sheer and sexy in metallics was a distinct personality in the collection. One of his men wore an all-gold sequin kurta-pyjamas.
The Tree of Life, which had Archana Aggarwal as jewellery partner, may have been a contrast to his usual style, but the DNA of the hand was indelible. Unmistakable. Signature RM. From staggering voluminous detailing to the romance of intricate miniature art. Up and close, they were pieces of art, like always.
So, who was this new RM? “I really feel it’s about evolution. If you want to do a collection, you cannot have a safety net or a certain style and keep hanging around with that. You have to try new things and go into newer territories. That’s what I like doing. Whether it is shape or massive volume… the idea is how can I celebrate creativity, newness and I want to stay excited about what I do. I think style is often an indication of your comfort zone. As a creator, I need to remove the safety net and jump into something new. I want to surprise people and that was what was appreciated at the Paris Couture Week. We did a predominately black and gold collection. My comfort is to use hundreds of colours. I wanted to leave that completely. I haven’t done gold. So, what happens when you do gold? My entire team and I keep challenging each other,” Rahul told us post-show, when we managed to steal him for a few minutes.
Rahul Mishra took a bow with wife and the brand’s co-founder Divya Bhatt Mishra
The gold for Rahul was linked to a childhood memory. “I was in a village for the first 10 years and 200 metres away was a beautiful banyan tree and I saw it every day in the morning when I woke up. Around the sun, the tree turned gold. So, I just wanted to recreate gold. Sun is the life-giver, giving golden light to the tree and the tree gives life to all of us…. Creating something that I have never done before and creating a new artistic idea,” he said.
If The Tree of Life was “20 per cent” his Paris Haute Couture Week collection of the same name, which too was a departure from the Rahul Mishra school of thought, the lovely miniature art was in the making for “two years in the studio”. “Paris Couture is mentally draining. To work on the collection again was challenging,” said Rahul.
The smile on his face and the innumerable congratulatory handshakes meant it was all worth it! Yes, he slept well, the night before, he said. The secret might just unfold in our next chat. Over to his fans, for the moment!
Pictures: Sandip Das
Swara Bhasker dropped by. “I have for long been a Rahul Mishra fan and I have worn them a lot. This is the first show that I have seen live. I love the pomp, confidence in the outfits and the details. I also love the scale of the outfit and yet there is so much ingenuity. Authentic,” she said. Couture is luxury. So, what spells luxury for Swara in the times we are living in? “I think for us the greatest luxury is the luxury to be who you are, say what you want, live the life you want and I think that is a luxury that is fast disappearing in ‘new India’,” was her candid reply.