On revival mode

MAKING FASHION DEMOCRATIC Models in outfits created by Sabyasachi at the event  

Billed as a landmark global trade event for Indian textile and handicraft sector, Textiles India 2017 features bigwigs of fashion as well as multi-talented artisans.

The two interdependent creators, who normally shy away from sharing the same platform, have been brought together on a common space by the Ministry of Textiles.

The curtain raiser was kicked off in a grand way at Crafts Museum on Tuesday night. Leading designers like Ritu Kumar, Anita Dongre, Tarun Tahiliani, Rajesh Pratap Singh and Manish Arora shared stage with artisans showcasing how richness of handloom and handicrafts can go hand in hand with modern textiles and technology on the ramp

Sabyasachi Mukherjee, who came all the way from Bahrain for the event, says: “I was asked to work on zardozi which I have revived in Bengal over the past 15 years. We have used textiles like silk from South India, Banarasi sari as safa, embroideries from Gujarat, Rajasthan and Andhra but tied it all down with zardozi from Bengal. It was pan-India with a focus on Bengal.”

Sabyasachi Mukherjee

Sabyasachi Mukherjee   | Photo Credit: K. Ananthan

Even as less is in is being bandied about in the fashion world, in reality it is not posing a challenge to our embroiders and weavers. “India has two different aesthetics. It would always be maximalist as well as minimalist country. Minimalism started with Mohenjodaro, Harappa civilization and Brahmo Samaj in West Bengal. The Mughals always supported excess. Both can coexist in today’s time. Personally I am a minimalist but I work in maximalism.” .”

On artisans and designers sharing the same platform, he says: “Today is a landmark day; I have never seen so many craftspersons and designers on same platform in a democratic way. They are backbone of Indian designers and it is time we recognise them before the whole world.”

For veteran couturist Ritu Kumar, shown how work with craftspersons at grassroots can give an impetus to growth of Indian fashion, this indeed was a proud moment.

Ritu Kumar

Ritu Kumar   | Photo Credit: Sandeep Saxena

Educative exercise

Describing the event as an educative exercise as more and more people would henceforth use handloom, she says: “The art is receiving the spotlight that it deserves. Hence it is empowering the Indian handloom sector by bringing together a collection from across the country under one roof.”

Her collection is based on aesthetics of the Kutch region.

“Inspiration was drawn from the tie-dye fabrics known from the desert region and use of mica mirror work with head embellishment which is the handwriting of the region. The collection has been defined in black and red, with silver, giving it a contemporary twist.”

On how this initiative would take forward interest of all stakeholders, Suket, known for his frank opinion, says: “India is not just about handloom; it also has power looms. Handloom sector cannot fulfil all the demand. So we all have to co-exist. So this is coming together of Indian textiles and organised sector.”

While showcasing his work at his stall, exhibitor Mohammad Yusuf, specialising in crafts given patronage during the Mughal period, was elated when Minister of Textiles Smriti Irani had words of encouragement for him. “I learnt metal embossing from my walid sahib (father). Now designers are giving us ideas and this is helping us to come up with new innovations in our crafts.”

Summing up the event, Tarun Tahiliani – who showcased silk brocade garments – says: “We have understood that textile feeds fashion which has many faces, and will take India’s heritage out in a new avatar. This is a major departure, a progressive leap of faith and shows a global understanding away from socialist myths.”

Backed by the Ministry of Textiles, the event will be held at Mahatma Mandir in Gandhinagar from June 30 to July 2.

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Printable version | Dec 9, 2021 8:05:32 AM |

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