All dressed up... that's all!

The Lakme India Fashion Week was the high point of the year. - Photo: V.V. Krishnan.  

THOUGH DESIGNERS in numerous fashion shows this year showed their artistic bent of mind and talent they forgot that they are Indian designers and bulk of their clientele comprises indigenous people rather than those living on the other side of the Atlantic. Instead of blatant plagiarism and cloning the Western designers like Versace, a bit of introspection is the need of hour. Plaudits should be given to those designers who swam against the tide by going in for experimentation and innovation.

This year Delhiites weren't allured by heavily embroidered traditional Indian wear, the kind you see during the weddings. The stress was on pr�t a porter, casual clothing and the target was not necessarily the cr�me de la cr�me of our society but also the middle class. This year not only students of fashion, wearing golden-rimmed glasses but also housewives fed up of monotonous domestic chores got a real treat of fashion at Lakme India Fashion Week. Top-notch designers and also those trying to keep pace with the Bals and Vallayas displayed their couture collections with all the pomp and glitter at the mother of all fashion shows. There was some bizarre show by Rohit Bal. He paraded his male models in fake leather jackets, with silverware tied on their foreheads. If that wasn't weird enough, he blindfolded some of them.

All dressed up... that's all!

The silver lining, of course, was the exquisite collection of Anjana Bhargava. However, she wasn't original but she did a good balancing act by assimilating clothes of Elizabethan era with the contemporary. There was disappointment too as Ritu Beri, who won plaudits in Paris, and Tarun Tahilani, whose chiffon kurta was worn by Jemima Goldsmith during her wedding with Pakistani cricketer, Imran Khan failed to show up at the LIFW. Designers played it safe as they continued with the formula of coming up with an amalgamation of Indian and Western attire. Even Ashish Soni played it safe and didn't go in for any experimentation. J.J.Vallaya came out with five bride line collections, which were a blend of Indian, Western and fusion. The fashion carnival continued at Kingfisher show and Bridal Asia -- which showcased bridal finery, apparel and products -- didn't live up to the hype and hoopla. Our culture was resuscitated and rejuvenated as the lehenga festival was shown with grandeur. The glorious reign of the Moghuls was manifest not in its sprawling splendour but in women's wardrobe. Some of the designers like Amarjyot Singh Anand, who dressed up his male models like females, fell flat.

The new designers need to realise that a fashion show is not merely a gimmick to earn filthy lucre but should be conducted in such a way that it remains entrenched in one's mind like a memorable blissful moment.