New Delhi: It seems like handspun cottons, khadis, silks and techniques like kalamkari, jamdhani and ikats have suddenly lurched into the limelight after several years of being relegated to niche pockets.
As India Runway Week Summer 2018 will have many designers giving handlooms the one thing missing from their oeuvre of late – desirability, here’s a sneak peak of what’s behind the seams.
Bibi Russell, the celebrated couturier from Bangladesh who helped ‘gamchha’ enter the prestigious high fashion market of the western world, is all set to kickstart the three-day fashion extravaganza with her collection ‘Rajasthali’ in association with Rajasthan Khadi Udyog.
Russell, who has for the last few years directed her focus on working for the heritage crafts of Rajasthan, told ANI, “The entire collection is made from this handspun and hand-woven fabric diversified by art and design intervention to be made more suitable for the modern context.”
Her ecological and khadi collection, which will have all shades of black and white in cotton, will see lots of tunics, wrap pants, harem pants and others. There will be matching jewelry and shoes.
While today almost every designer from Hyderabad is dabbling with traditional weaves, Shravan Kummar Ramaswamy has been linked with handlooms since the late ’90s.
Shravan, who will be showcasing organically-dyed and all handmade textiles of sunrise state Andhra Pradesh, will be having master weavers from Hyderabad as his showstoppers.
The season will also witness designers showcasing their talent for the first time help Indian handlooms weave their magic on the ramp.
‘Weaver Soul’ by Shravan Gajam will be exhibiting handwoven wrap-faced denim fabric made in Ikat produced from home-run units in Telangana. The collection will consist of season’s top trends such as stylish ripped, stretched and distressed jeans.
“Because of the desire to preserve the Ikat art form, the fabric denim Ikat is born. Abstract Ikat motifs are used with different shades of Indigo and off-white colour on the denim fabric,” he told ANI. “Collection of denim Ikat is a blend of cotton and lycra. Cotton gives you comfort and ease whereas lycra keeps on stretchably working towards treating you like a free bird with unraveled mobility.”
While Ambica’s ‘Peeli Kothi’ will be bringing Banarasi sarees to the centre stage, the ‘Bloom’ collection by Vaani Raghupathy will be pouring in a fresh sense of style.
Inspired from the motifs that depict the natural shape and colour of fruits, flowers, the ‘Bloom’ collection is all about a mix of organza, chiffon and silk weaves from Kanchipuram in pleasant and refreshing pastels.
With her ‘Summer Vibes’ collection, Soniya Saanchi wants to capture the essence of the season and bring a summery tint to the ramp.
Talking about her collection, she told ANI, “Lucknowi Chikankari is a symbol of elegance, class, tradition and a heritage and we are bound to redefine the beauty of this historical fabric with a touch of Mukaish work.”
“When paired with Chickenkari, Mukaish – an almost forgotten craft beautifies the Chickenkari work by its signature embroidery – revamps and elevates our creation to a whole new level of chic and class” she noted, adding, “Also sonnets of nature are threaded onto lights with combination of Banarasi brocade, rich skills and exquisite fabric flaunting the crafts of India.”
In addition, designer Poonam Dubey and Banka Silk, an organisation that works with the weavers of Jharkhand and Bihar, will balance the tradition of the handloom weaves through cotemporary silhouettes and sensibilities with their ‘Bahar’ collection. Banka Silk also partnered with India Runway Week to provide Indian Handloom fabrics to designers at weavers’ rate at their doorstep.
Avinash Pathania, founder of IFFD (organiser of the event), said in a statement: “With each season of India Runway Week, we aim to push Indian Handloom & Fresh designers to set new trends in fashion. With this season we continue to put more focus on Indian handloom fabric with these fresh and amazing designers.”
IRW Season 10 will hit the national capital from April 20-22 at the DLF Place, Saket.