Kanjeevaram on the ramp

08dmcleena1   | Photo Credit: 08dmcleena1

Kanjeevaram saris, which are often ignored by our haute designers, will be the surprise package at the BMW India Bridal Fashion Week this Saturday. Designer duo of Ashima-Leela is coming up with a dazzling range of Kanjeeveram saris as they seek to give it a push at the fashion week. Often considered difficult to drape, they have given it a contemporary touch to make them look comfortable for today’s jet setting cosmopolitan women.

Shedding light on the collection, aptly titled Dakshina, Leena says through research, innovation and in-depth work with her team she has tried to give a new twist to the archetypal South Indian sari and make it in consonance with the taste of women living in Delhi and National Capital Region. “Western wear like gowns have been used innumerable times in fashion weeks. Lehengas and salwar kameez are also in vogue but it seems that sari is being forgotten. So it was important for us for us to work on its revival and make people understand that they are as much a part of our culture, heritage and tradition as they are a fashion statement. We have given this traditional South Indian sari North Indian flavour.”

Pointing out that these saris are best representative of the South Indian culture, Leena says she has used orange and mustard colours and given her own creative input. “We have used temple and motifs, done patchwork. It is an ethnic work.”

While contemporaries of her are doing Indo-West or cocktail dresses , Leena is trying to set a new benchmark by presenting traditional wear in a way that it appeals to those who have an inclination for traditional wear but want their garment to have contemporary elements.

“This is not a regressive move. As designers, we want to start a trend and want others to follow. As someone who closely follows fashion-conscious people’s preference these days, I can say with confidence that ethnic wear as far as interiors are concerned is on its way to becoming a style statement.” The trend, she feels, is all around. Earlier, people used Italian marble but now they are decorating their homes the traditional way. Lehengas are coming back. Traditional bridal wear is back. It is heartening for experienced designers like us.”

Noting that the idea behind the collection is to do something new and out-of-the-box, Leena says, “For the fashion week, the challenge is to do something different and experimentation is always the best way to go about it. Our earlier collection ‘Chandni Chowk’ was an ode to the Mughals. Last season too our collection was dedicated to the same era. We want to do something different, off beat. Here too we have given a different interpretation to Kanjeevaram. Made them more contemporary and given them looks which gel with the taste of today’s modern Indian women.”

For producing these saris the couturier neither travelled to Kanjeevaram to get a first-hand-experience of how these exquisite saris are woven nor did she bring these elegant Indian wear and reworked on them. “If I procure these saris from Chennai, Bangalore or Mysore then there is no creativity involved. I have prepared these saris in my store,” says Leena.

Shedding light on the fabric procured by her, Leena says she has used South Indian silk. “We are using brocade and organza. You can find the reflection of iconic temples in the form of motifs. Then there is intricate embroidery which has been made with lot of care. South Indian jewellery has also been prepared in-house.”

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Printable version | Aug 5, 2021 4:50:28 AM |

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