Six fashion designers came together to support marginalised craft clusters and those heavily impacted by the pandemic by generating livelihood opportunities for the artisans. The designers showcased their collection virtually at the ongoing digital edition of the Lakme Fashion Week.
Veteran designers Abraham & Thakore, Rajesh Pratap Singh, Urvashi Kaur, Payal Khandwala, Anavila and Suket Dhir highlighted crafts like ikat, block prints, Jamdaani, brocade, Khatwa and Shibori techniques via a fashion film, inspired by the contrast typically seen in the fashion supply chain in production and retailing.
David Abraham and Rakesh Thakore for their label Abraham & Thakore presented a capsule collection of block printed garments in sand and gold colour. The line included separates with mix and match options. Gold studded, pinstriped sari worn with a sophisticated Victorian-style, long-sleeved, ruffled, neckline blouse, Kedia jacket highlighted with gold dots and teamed over a simple tunic and a trouser with a graduating gold dot design. A ruffled maxi skirt was teamed with a cut-away shoulder blouse. For semi-formal options, wide-legged pants with giant gold dots were worn with a cross over tie-up blouse with ruffled sleeves and deep décolletage.
Singh for Satya Paul unveiled the beauty of double ikat in stark black and white. The blurred geometry of the patterns was visualised on simple cotton sarees with the ikat accentuating the pallav (trail), while the black borders featured as a contrast on white saris. There was linear ikats for a black and white colour blocked saree.
Anavila Mishra launched the “Dhanak” collection which saw her signature linen woven saris with fine zari and khatwa work. The colours were in jewel tones of garnet, citrine, jade, amethyst, emerald, topaz, sapphire and rose quartz. The silhouettes were easy and comfortable. There were kaftans with a smattering of floral embroidery on the shoulders and batwing sleeves which had a layered silhouette and are ideal for comfort wear; red saris draped with dazzling borders were teamed with embroidered choli. A turquoise blue sari was a stunner with a garland of flowers along the border and worn with a Zigzag motif design, empire line blouse.
Payal showcased her limited edition of 10 jamdaani sarees in fine muslin on handlooms. She has used colour-blocked silks, traditional motifs in floral or geometric shapes and added modern version of the wildflower print story. Payal showcased in each sari a meticulous format, when two-inch strips of designs are placed under the loom with myriad dots in watercolour added to the woven warp, to recreate the pattern on the yarn. The weaving done by wooden shuttles according to guidelines had a silver metallic yarn with the assistance of a separate metallic needle.
Urvashi Kaur brought alive the beauty of Shibori tie-dye patterns with her collection ‘Tahul’. Tiered and shirt dresses vied for attention with the oversized silhouettes that offered trans-seasonal relaxed dressing options. The multi-layers had numerous mix and match choices for both genders in a sheer and opaque format for a stylish appeal. Detailing created a strong accent in the form of micro pleating and hand blocks while the fabric base was as diverse. Urvashi selected handwoven organic cotton, sheer Kota silk, Jamdaani and then brought in sheer noils that had inserts of intricate stitch line texturing.
Bringing the grandeur of handwoven silk brocades to the forefront, Suket Dhir worked with the gorgeous weaves in jewel tones of vermillion, aqua, grey or fuchsia as the base for the practical, easy, line of separates. Celebrating the ‘Nature Within’ concept, Suket introduced a mélange of varied animal prints that lit up the landscape on the handwoven silk brocades.