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Bold and beautiful designs

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Designer Bibhu Mohapatra, who is taking his Spring-2016 collection to Paris talks about the Bauhaus element in his collection

Clean lines, impeccable construction, and making prints and fabrics work seamlessly together are his de rigueur. Earlier this year, Orissa-born designer Bibhu Mohapatra was catapulted into the limelight for having dressed the U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama during her visit to India. With his eponymous label and store in New York, this business graduate turned fashion designer has become a regular at red carpet events and continues to dress several Hollywood A-listers, like Jennifer Lopez, Lupita Nyong’o, Cobie Smulders and Gwyneth Paltrow.

Most recently, American actress-singer Jane Krakowski wore his design at the 67th Emmy Awards.

He has always maintained that he designs for the woman who is aware of her independence and individuality. So, it’s no surprise then that he picked Nancy Cunard, the shipping heiress, writer and political activist, for his Spring 2015 collection and has now picked Annemarie Schwarzenbach – the journalist, photographer and style icon of the Bauhaus era for the Spring 2016 collection.

Powerful and filled with impact, seems to be the threads on which he creates his vision. Bibhu debuted his 43-piece collection on September 16th at The Gallery at Skylight Clarkson Square, where the Bauhaus

element was evident throughout the collection, with geometric shapes present in the prints, the silhouettes, the colour blocking, and also the detailed embroidery. He also had hand-crafted architectural diamond earrings that were provided by Forevermark India to complete the look. The designer will take his Spring 2016 collection to Paris from September 30th to October 7th.

Excerpts from an interview:

Who is a Bibhu Mohapatra woman?

She is bold, confident and a liberated woman, who is well travelled, educated and is passionate about things, not only fashion but passionate about life and she loves beautifully made clothes. She could be 22 or 85 but someone who loves art and loves to travel – a true global woman.

You created a collection of traditional weaves from Orissa, are you planning to include more Indian weaves in your collections in the future?

I do have plans and we are planning to do a revival. The goal was to work with weavers and help them appreciate their own craft, so for me the next phase is to scale it up a bit. I also plan to bring some

samples and host them here to global designers and get them orders possibly. That’s the plan and personally I would love to use this fabric in the future in my designs.

What do you miss most about India and does India find its way into your collections?

I miss my people, the food, the colours, the incredible energy and the craft, basically all the things I grew up with. I try to stay connected through my friends, relatives and family and make frequent trips as well and I draw lot of inspiration from India. I try to travel different parts of India as I have not visited many places; I

didn’t have the opportunity to travel much when I was living there.

What do you do to unwind and feel inspired when you are not showcasing at fashion weeks?

I love to cook, read and travel to new places. I also have a house in the countryside which is two hours away from Manhattan; it has farms, cows and animals around. I also have a vegetable garden and chickens. So I play the role of a farmer on weekends. That’s how I unwind. Besides this, travelling inspires me a lot.

What was the theme for your New York fashion week this year?

The theme was inspired by the world of Bahaus design school– German design school from the 20’s and my muse was someone called Annemarie Schwarzenbach – Swiss-German journalist and photographer who travelled a lot and had a unique sense of style. After she passed away she became an icon, she was very spirited and positive, she had a short but energy-filled life.

Do you have any future plans to design jewellery?

Yes, we have something coming up with Forevermark. It is still in process, the announcement will be made soon once we are ready. I am excited and looking forward to this new role.

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Printable version | Jan 29, 2020 3:22:23 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/bold-and-beautiful-designs/article7703075.ece

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