Kareena Kapoor in Gaurav Gupta
This edition of the phygital FDCI X Lakmé Fashion Week Winter-Festive 2021 was all about conscious designs and sustainable fashion. Attuned with the season’s ‘Define to Redefine’ theme, Aisha Rao and Jade by Monica and Karishma offered an escapist fantasy, while Anamika Khanna’s prints for AK-OK were innately artistic. With Tarun Tahiliani redefining his signature aesthetic and Gaurav Gupta taking a sustainable approach to couture, fashion this season was all about mindful ensembles made to last. Aashni + Co brings you a round-up of the most covetable collections.
“We’re trying to make sustainability sexy with this collection,” said Gaurav Gupta, about making a collection out of recycled plastic for the grand finale show. The ocean-loving designer drew elements from aquatic creatures, weaving his fabrics with excavated crisp packets, biscuit wrappers and plastic bottles from landfills and sea. The ‘Redefine’ collection of signature sculpted and fluid draped creations in metallic tones made a case for winsome looks that we are sure will make their way to cocktail parties, red carpets and extravagant galas.
AK-OK by Anamika Khanna
AK-OK by Anamika Khanna blurred the line between modernity and timelessness with its signature cool-girl aesthetic. The collection of bold layered sets, sensuous drapes in striking prints and ornamentation showed a flair to translate effortlessly from AM to PM parties.
Shradhha Kapoor in AK-OK by Anamika Khanna
Tarun Tahiliani opened the week with ‘The Reunion’, which showcased a series of capsule collections inspired by the crafts and architecture of India. His work highlighted bidri, pichwai, chikankari, kutch and kantha embroidery, each creation narrating a story of traditional craft and Mughal architecture. The stalwart translated the art forms into a sense of modernity with new-age pieces like draped concept saris, capelets, duster coats and a statement belt for the bare midriff. The dynamic interpretations made a case for opulent looks for upcoming celebrations.
Handwoven textile savant Gaurang presented ‘Chaand’, setting the spotlight on diverse weaving clusters from Benaras, Kota, Srikakulam, Uppada, Venkatagiri, Kashmir, Paithan and the meticulous Jamdani weaving technique. Incorporating two or three different weaves in a single sari with embroidered highlighting, the designer offered a treasury of heirlooms to cherish for a lifetime.
Taapsee Pannu in Gaurang
Chola presented ‘The Awakening’—an eclectic array of fluid silhouettes inspired by the small pleasure of life—lounging and letting go. The artfully fuelled yet laid-back designs featured a spectrum of colours, retaining the monochrome palette that is signature to the brand, but with pops of colour. The layered pieces, anti-fit co-ords and drapes are perfect trans-seasonal investments.
Aisha Rao’s penchant for gossamer fabrics like tissue, organza and tulle along with a fresh take on embroidered woollens and silks made a case for old-world femininity and poise. The ‘Paper Dolls’ collection of lehengas, shararas and saris transported us to the 18th and 19th-century poetic dreamscapes and fantasies, setting the tone for picturesque weddings of this season.
Diana Penty in Aisha Rao
Jade by Monica and Karishma
Miniature art met couture in this handcrafted wedding heirloom collection by Jade by Monica and Karishma called ‘Bani Thani’. The label collaborated with leheriya artist Mohd Saquib translating the traditional craft into a contemporary form. An ode to the artistry and crafts of Rajasthan, the collection of lehengas feature embroideries and details inspired by colourful miniature paintings.
M X S World by Monisha Jaising and Shweta Bachchan Nanda
M X S World by Monisha Jaising and Shweta Bachchan Nanda borrowed inspiration from the disco and sportswear of the ’80s for their athleisure collection ‘Back to Reality’. Bold colours like neon yellow, UFO green and electric blue packed in a punch while the functionality of sports and ease of loungewear made for silhouettes that will take you from weekend brunches to long haul flights and night outs.
Abraham & Thakore
Abraham & Thakore presented their collection ‘Assemble. Disassemble. Reassemble’ with eco-credentials as an ethical step for our society. The designers resorted to recycled PET bottles to create textiles and techniques like patchwork, hand stitching and applique work. The no-fuss tunics, transitional co-ords, ultra-modern saris and relaxed menswear looks boast all-rounder versatility.
Dia Mirza in Abraham & Thakore
‘Eternal Summer’ by Mishru impersonated a romantic affair with floral embroideries rendered in silk, enriched with colour gradients of pastel and sorbet hues. The artfully crafted concept saris, bridal lehengas, statement blouses and fusion sets serve as spotlight-ready looks for festive and wedding revelries.
Nikita Mhaisalkar’s ‘Canvas’ tapped into individualistic artistic instincts and joy-evoking colours to inspire hope for the world. The glamorous resort wear offers layered looks in fluid silhouettes, featuring abstract art, geometric and linear accents.
Another resort wear line ‘Maverick’ by Shruti Sancheti showcased a fusion of free-spirited dresses, bold pantsuits and easy-breezy co-ords. The soft feminine charm served as a perfect inspiration for upcoming vacations.
Samant Chauhan’s ‘Strawberry Thief’ borrowed inspiration from British textile designer Willian Morris’ print of the same name, made in the 20th century. The connoisseur’s impressions of symmetry, geometric accents and textile accents made the collection of flouncy gowns fitting for evening soirees.
Shop these designers at Aashni + Co.