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Mint with a goal

Green is the new pink. That's what The Lakme India Fashion Week, which draws to a close today, forecasts


PHOTO: R.V. Moorthy

THE MASTER AND THE MUSE: In the run-up to the finale of LIFW, designer Varun Bahl is seen with Shivani Kapur, the new face of Lakme.

If there is one show during the Lakme India Fashion Week where the business and creative aspects of fashion meet, it's the finale. This year the theme is peppermint and young designers Varun Bahl and Monisha Jaising will interpret Lakme's fashion statement for the summer. While Varun will interpret the cool mint, Monisha will take care of the spicy pepper part. "Lakme provides us the mood and the colour palette, as for the rest, we let our creativity flow," says Monisha.

"This summer, the look is subtle. This, one could also make out from the designs being shown on the ramp. The colours for the season are green and blue. There is a general perception in the country that these are not the colours for make-up, which is wrong. We have given an aqua feel and the tones are soft - a striking contrast to last year's fruit-shock range," says Kapil Bhalla, make-up expert for Lakme.

He explains, "The mint look is meant for the day. Here we have introduced eyeliners in pastel shades with hints of silver. Then there are lip-glosses with an orange flavour. Research has proved that these shades give a happy feeling."

Pepper is the evening look. Here the brown shades are predominant. But they are muted. "The lip glosses are almost nude. So they're subtle."

Young and mature

Model Yana Gupta in a finale outfit

Varun says his creations are for women who are young and mature at the same time. "Essentially, I am trying to capture the holiday mood... casual, fresh and happy with shades of green, blue and white."

One of the special features of his collection is going to be cardigans. Cardigans in a summer collection?

"I am using tulle — a thin delicate mesh of silk. There is a lot of variety in the collection, as I don't follow any trends. There will be skirts from A-line to voluminous. Similarly, the tops will move from a fluid to a slightly structured look."

Monisha's emphasis is on dresses. "My inspiration is a lady who loves luxury but has a bohemian side to her. It's a late summer, almost autumn collection. The colours are beige, brown, lilac and coral." For Varun, "Being part of the finale of the Week gives tremendous mileage in the media. And if my work appeals to buyers they can contact me later on."

Talking about the profitable association with the Week, Ashok Chopra, Vice President Lakme Lever, says the synergy between fashion and beauty care is working really well. "Both complement each other. You can't think of cosmetics and clothes separately. You can't put green or blue shadows if you don't have a suitable dress to complement it. So we tie up with designers for the Week and share the colour palette and create a fashion statement. Manufacturing follows."

However, Ashok denies that the strategy of having the Week in summer works to Lakme's advantage as colours like black, which become hot in winters internationally, do not require interpretation in cosmetics. "We understand the Indian mindset. Indian winter lasts from October to January. This is the peak festive season when nobody likes to wear black. And if interpretation is really required we could use contrasting colours like red to go with black."


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