Metroplus

Styling makes all the difference

Aditi Rao Hydari sports a Ritu Kumar ensemble, showing how a sari can be draped in a contemporary way  

‘Re-use’, ‘repeat value’ are terms Hyderabad designers are hearing from their clientele of late. A lot has been said and discussed about ostentatious weddings where the families involved do not, at least visibly, make a hue and cry about splurging on wedding décor and trousseaus. The well-heeled wouldn’t bat an eyelid to splurge a few lakh of rupees on lehengas and saris. The amount was worth it if the bride and the groom stood out on the momentous day.

“This time, I am coming across people who want to be able to re-use their wedding outfits, perhaps break it down and mix and match for later occasions,” says Anand Kabra, one of the leading designers in the country. “The expectations from wedding wear are more real and it’s nice when people say they want to be able to re-use their outfits,” agrees Archana Rao, who has emerged as a bright, young designer from the city.

The Lakme Fashion Week Winter/Festive 2015 had cues for the season, with designers rolling out ethnic jackets and capes that can be teamed up with Indian wear. “We’ve moved into an elegant fusion zone that is neither completely traditional nor overtly contemporary. Team up a lehenga with long jackets, crop tops or capelets. Dupattas are being done away with unless absolutely necessary. Our weddings are traditional but within this format, there is scope for innovation,” observes Anand. He also welcomes the ‘dress down’ principle where the outfit gives more room for styling, keeping embroidery and embellishments to a minimum.

Ganesh Nallari, a go-to designer for many in the city, also suggests playing with layers as opposed to letting embellishments do the talking. “A Telugu groom wears a traditional pattu panchi with gold or maroon border for the wedding. Grooms like stitched dhotis paired with kurta with a little embroidery. We’ve also been seeing layered sherwani-kurtas teamed up with dhoti pants. This is the right season to bring back the waistcoats,” says Ganesh.

The traditional kanchivarams and Benaras saris are heirloom pieces and for those who’d like to revisit prized saris from their mothers and grandmothers wardrobes, a contemporary blouse in raw silk in neutral colours may do the trick. “Never put a scissor to heirloom pieces; no one weaves such saris today. Experiment with the drape instead,” suggests Anand. Drape the sari over a lehenga or use it as a khada dupatta.

Talking of old saris, Ganesh points how the long-forgotten motifs are being used again. “A whole lot of animal motifs that one would see in old saris, inspired by designs in temples, are back now, particularly peacocks and rudraksh. The paisleys have taken a break,” he notes.

The line of division between South Indian and North Indian wedding celebrations began to blur a decade ago when sangeets and mehndis made inroads into South Indian weddings. Along with it came cocktail saris and lightweight outfits. “Many women want to do away with the struggle of heavy outfits. High waist skirts, lehengas with pockets find takers. For pre-wedding events, long kurtas with high slits, jackets or crop tops can be combined with dressy palazzos,” suggests Archana. The palazzos are nothing but a contemporary take on the Hyderabadi shararas.

This winter, experiment with the drape, focus on styling to give a new edge to an heirloom outfit and in general, keep embellishment to a minimum.

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Printable version | Apr 22, 2021 11:34:32 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/styling-makes-all-the-difference/article7923345.ece

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