The Nur Jahan look

Anoushka Sharma in an outfit created by Sanya Dhir.   | Photo Credit: 11dmcanoushka

Costume designers display their mettle and class while showcasing their craftsmanship on garment worn by glamorous actors either for their personal use or for a film project.

But what if they are roped for a film revolving around wrestling then does that leave much scope?

“In a wrestling-based film certain limitations are obviously there; I cannot deny. But the idea is not to get hemmed in. We cannot get bogged down and have to find a way out to showcase our creativity,” says Sanya Dhir, designer and creative director of Divani, the cinema inspired brand of Yash Raj Films, who created exquisite garments for Anoushka Sharma in Sultan.

The designer was clear on how to make the actress look fetching and appropriate. “Since Anoushka is playing a Muslim character, we decided to give her a spectacular look which went with the character’s traditional background. We did extensive research on the Mughal art. Our collection has delicate patterns in pristine white threads on fine mulls and muslin. Each piece was aesthetically styled and crafted with kundan-kadi zardozi and gota embroidery. Travelling back in time, this art owes its origin to the durbar of Nur Jahan. And this is from where our inspiration has come. And in the process, we have made an attempt to revive this beautiful tradition.”

On the challenge posed by this project, Sanya, who shuttles between Delhi to Mumbai and is now in Pakistan, says: “Working on this film required multi tasking, methodical planning and execution. It took us over a year. Our priority was coordinating with dozens of karigars based in Lucknow, Banaras and Delhi. Finally everything fell into the place.”

Luckily for Sanya there was a window of opportunity to showcase her talent on the big screen as Anushka as Aarfa has been shown getting hitched.

Revealing how creative she could get, Sanya says: “Anoushka feminine part was amply revealed in the film. We gave her the bridal look and the young actress looking like a diva in her role. We made sure that the garment is subtle yet not over the top. It is demure yet classy. Traditional worksmanship has been shown in the bridal garment which is in ivory, silver and light gold. It is minimalistic yet nice,” says Sanya.

On how she made the actor look sensual, Sanya says, “I made a sharara with a beautiful ornate chikankari dupatta which worked well with her a nikaah sequence. I used kiran (tassel) with gotta work. Tassel has been made of zari. And I have made the actor wear chikankari shirt, which is in ivory colour. It goes well with the sharara. Handcrafted chikankari ensemble has been decorated with bespoke technique of zardozi, kunda, gotta, dapka and naqshi.”

Straight kurtas, ijaars, shararas, lehengas and saris, teamed up with jackets, blouses and crop tops, are part of the collection, which has a sub-continental look. “It would work in both India and Pakistan,” says Sanya, who watched the film in Lahore the other day. She was in the city to explore the opportunity for opening the first couture flagship store of Divani.

The inside story

Salman Khan’s moustache and rippling muscles in Sultan make him look like a desi pehlwan. But what about his wardrobe? Langot, the traditional underwear, is lending the character an authentic look. The one-piece cloth is tightly wrapped to protect the player from sports-related injury..

According to Ashley Rebello, the actor’s stylist, langot had to look authentic as well as made of a fabric, which absorbs sweat. “Since the actor had to wear it for long hours of shooting, quality of the cloth had to be kept in mind. So we prepared langot using 100 per cent cotton as it absorbs sweat.”

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Printable version | Jul 27, 2021 1:49:00 PM |

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