July ended on a dreamy note with the country’s top couturiers showcasing their mood for the festive season with sheer grandeur. India Couture Week 2018 hosted at Taj Palace New Delhi, gathered a bevvy of shows that not only swept us off our feet with beautiful couture pieces, but also with larger-than-life runway sets. Here’s a recap of the five-day extravagant affair.
Tarun Tahiliani’s opening show ‘Elysium’ celebrated the modern Indian goddess and brought his vision to create light-weight bridal pieces to life on the runway. The show was staged against a palace setting with strings of jasmine adding an Indian touch. With an ethereal palette and encrusted layers of Swarovski crystals, the clothes glistened under the runway lights. From light dresses, pre-draped saris to tulle lehengas and heavily embroidered pieces in chikankari, zardozi and aari, he had a wide array of garments covering everyone’s expectations for festive/bridal wear. Aditi Rao Hydari, the eternal beauty ended the show in a lehenga featuring a sea of crystals and pearls with a hint of feathers and a long ombré veil featuring floral appliqué. The show raised the bar for the rest of the fashion week!
Inspired by the Victorian era, designer Anju Modi showcased her collection ‘A Maiden’s Prayer’ that romanced the old world charm. She kept away from her usual aesthetics of heavily embroidered pieces and opted for more English hues and vintage silhouettes. With the use of fabrics like brocade, velvet, and silk her collection looked rich and Victorian luxe. Kangana Ranaut completed the entire collection seamlessly by walking in a regal cream hand-embroidered lehenga styled with a classic velvet maroon jacket.
Pallavi Jaikishan revived her two-decade-old Chakra design by mixing it with flower motifs in the collection called ‘Nostalgia.’ Her showcase had a wide range of fabrics like French lame, tissue, and Italian brocade. The colour palette highlighted some metallic tones of gold and silver juxtaposed with dove blue, shades of cerise and cranberry reds. The show treasured heritage and did not fail to resonate with the woman of today.
Falguni Shane Peacock
The stars shimmered a little extra when it was time for Falguni Shane Peacock to showcase their collection on the glittery runway. The collection was aptly named ‘Amour De Junagarh’ as it combined the Parisian finesse and Rajasthani opulence. The garments were embellished with ethereal stones, feathers, and crystals in an innovative way. Dramatic veils, royal trails, and modern silhouettes appeared on the runway with a unique palette of medieval blue, tinsel gold, pearled ivory and lavender fog to name a few. If the shine on the clothes wasn’t enough, Kareena Kapoor Khan breezed in a heavily embellished gold lehenga (weighing thirty kilograms) with a full-sleeved blouse and nude dupatta.
Amit Aggarwal’s couture collection titled ‘Crystalis’ emerged from the concepts of formation of crystals. The designs were sharp, angular and crystalline in metallic tones with a unique range of three-dimensional embroideries blending traditional Indian and western shapes together. Shilpa Shetty punctuated the entire affair by flaunting a dark plum drape paired with a structured blouse resembling a futuristic saree.
Suneet Verma’s collection called ‘Naintara’ showcased a bright and glittering array of traditional bridal wear with a modern twist. A total of 55 looks included details like big motifs, hand-embroidered applique, tassels, ruffles, sequins and mirror work. Each piece flaunted the ace craftsmanship with an eye for detail.
Shyamal & Bhumika
Shyamal & Bhumika’s resplendent collection titled ‘Muse Of Mirrors’ showcased an assemblage of delicate fabrics and rich embroidery. Garments were beautifully crafted in fine crepes, silks, georgettes, and organza featuring exquisite silk and zari thread work. The collection had everything appropriate for the perfect bridal trousseau with tulle lehengas, embellished shararas, and traditional sarees. Kiara Advani sashayed in a seafoam green lehenga and gave the perfect ending to a memorable show.
Inspired by the 17th-century Mughal architecture, designer Rahul Mishra showcased quite a majestic couture collection called ‘Maraasim’. From pretty pastels to a sudden burst of deep orange and reds, the garments were a genuine treat to the eyes. The vibrant thread work, skilled chikankari and organza detailing made each piece look like a masterpiece.
Designer Reynu Taandon’s collection ‘Once Upon A Dream’ celebrates the beauty of florals on a runway that was covered with a bed of enchanting flowers. The surreal palette of fresh pastels and tender tones together with intricate detailing of sequins, foils and laborious beadwork brought in a breath of fresh air. From the opulent traditional bride to the simple modern bride, there was something for everyone in the collection.
Rohit Bal’s finale show had a change of location (from Taj Palace to The Imperial Hotel) which also instilled a change of frame of mind for us. Mr Bal’s show was an escapade of statement embroideries and anything-but-traditional silhouettes. Bright colours set on a base of black or rich creams on fabrics like velvet and brocade made his collection ‘Guldastah’ the befitting finale to a grand couture week.
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