N C R   S T O R I E S


The Year That Was...
Smriti Kak

FASHION shows… jewellery expos…beauty workshops and all this to prove that fashion is serious business… especially when Indian designers and models are making inroads into the foreign markets. From Selfridges to the local mart, Indian ethnic wear has takers abroad. The six yards of wonder and the embroidered best, Indian attire seems to be arriving in distant shores.

Back home, the year saw a host of fashion – means - business shows. The country’s fashion starved janta has been offered largesse by the Fashion Design Council of the India, they have announced the decision to hold not one but two fashion weeks.

While many might be tempted to burp… thanks to the overfeeding by scores of designers shows and exhibitions of everything from undergarments err…lingerie to shoes and whatever the imagination could lay its designs on, the gluttonous among us still had their dil chahta more.

How else would you explain the constant rush at the jewellery show and the lingerie show…. The Capital played host to a difficult to remember number of shows and exhibitions. So, what if the celestial tidings predicted a no good time for weddings…those nursing the dreams of a spring/ monsoons/ summer/ winter wedding were made to rehearse. They were taught how to dress, how to hide the dark circles under the eyes and also how to pick and pack the gifts for the baraatis. And you thought they teach you nothing at the Weddings expos!

Films continued to dictate fashion. What Shah Rukh wore on screen was immediately copied for Bunty’s and Bobby’s wedding… Devdas sets were replicated and women weighed by Devdas jewellery and Devdas sarees were walking the streets.

And while designers also got busy in itsy-bitsy squabbling (remember Shantanu and Nikhil saying I-spy at Krishna Mehta’s show during LIFW. Or a chota sa tiff over who designed the jewelled T shirts first!) the fashion worshipping youth did their own thing.

Earrings that touched the shoulders and kurits that could give the ever-rising inflation a big complex were must haves. The Nanda style tight kurtis with churidars/salwars and even pants was the unofficial dress code.

Men… at least some, did their bit in breaking the gender benders. Not with a pony tail...but with dupattas and bangles. Mercifully, the bangles were metal kadas and the duppatas used only with kurta pajamas.

When people were all dressed up… where did they go! The discos are passé. It was the lounge bars and more lounge bars. The Capital probably has the most number of eateries and lounges in the country.

Every week saw the inauguration of a new one each promising to be different. Bollywood stars and celebs were chased from one inauguration to another.

And while most actresses exchanged notes on the number of ribbons they cut… Madame Dixit turned business savvy with the launch of her herbal cosmetic corps. The actress launched a line of products with herbal ingredients for the Emami group.

The city was also momentarily taken in by quick fix hair. Those with cropped tresses turned Rapunzels overnight thanks to the implants that make your hair grow from anything between 18 to 26 inches. The expensive makeover was a short-lived phenomenon.

We also had the beauty clinics propagating beauty secrets, from Botox to Laser therapies. And while the mortals were at it, the Gods too were not left alone. Designers Ashima Leena along with Anajana Bhargava got together to dress Lord Krishna and Radha for the Janmashtami celebrations. Dressing the lord was a divine call for the designers (they confessed that).

And the hoi polloi took care of their social responsibilities as well.

From saying no to leather to designing for social animals there were 0moments of “giving back something to the society”.

Along with PETA designers swore to use Plather (fake leather) and save the animal hides. Menaka Gandhi’s brainchild ‘Fashion’s Finest Hour’ saw 150 designs, 33 designers and a single price raise money for animals. Joining her cause were Manish Malhotra, Ritu Beri, Jattinn Kochhar, Geetanjali Kashyap, Manish Arora, Ravi Bajaj, Ranna Gill, Kavita Bhartiya, Satya Paul, Sonam Dubal, Nikhil & Shantanu, Nandita Basu and Mandira Wirk.

Though its fashionable not to dictate a New Year’s resolution, a reminder to all those who swear by fashion…fashion is not following the herd… it is doing your own thing. So said the designers. (Which one, that’s another story!)

A line that suits your mood

For the winter season, Lee Cooper has introduced a whole new collection of jackets and pullovers for men and women. Jackets are predominantly in two categories - denim and non-denim. With contemporary silhouettes, and international look, the jackets are available in varied colours for every mood from sparkling energetic red to smoother lights.

Long jackets are also on offer and women can look forward to some ornate and classy styling. The non-denim jackets are characterised by denim look quilted jackets, imported Lycra-blended pigment dyed enzyme washed jackets, bonded fleece jackets, long jackets in CNP fabric with fleece lining for added warmth.

Sweaters are available in imported Italian yarns, the spiral bouclé yarns, griddle yarns, real indigo yarns, and mercerised yarns. Sweaters in 100 per cent cotton and blended Acrowool are also available.

Shawl expo

Here’s a stylish way of keeping out the cold. The shawl expo, currently on at the Pragati Maidan, has got together a wide range of shawls from various parts of the country.

From the must have Kashmiri ones to the stylish Bandhini from Gujarat and Rajasthan, the shawls are a delight. Also available are stoles and scarves in various materials including wool and silk. Organised by the Government of India, the expo is on till January 4.

Anti-chill garment technology
Nalini Ranjan

Osia Italia, an established brand, has recently launched its anti-chill winter wears range. The speciality of the range is that it not only gives the warmth to wearer but also restricts chilled air from entering the garment.

It allows only that quantity of air from entering what is required for the human skin to breathe. This has been possible because of a proprietary technology developed by this company called, ‘Anti-Chill technology’.

The garments are resins treated and fixed at 180-degree centigrade temperature to make the treatment wash resistant.

The technology has been developed after intense research of two years and used in the entire range of winter fashion garments like jackets, pullovers, lowers etc. Ludhiana-based Sharav Knitwear is selling these garments under the brand name ‘Carrington’.


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