The best of Bal, the resplendence
The focus at Lakme India Fashion Week continues to be on substance rather than creating a design which can only be kept as a souvenir. As days pass by, designers jockey to get maximum customers, the fast track to fame and fortune, says MADHUR TANKHA... .
AT LAKME INDIA Fashion Week shows designers are focusing on customers who are going to fetch them green notes rather than cultivating members of the Fourth Estate. So heavily embroidered stuff has been given good riddance while prêt-a-porter, which is casual ready-to-wear, has got the go-ahead. This has been done as manufacturers belatedly realised that there aren't many takers for embroidered stuff. So more casuals have sprung out from the studios of designers. Pricing has been done in such a way that not only the crème-de-la-crème of society but also the middle class can drop by and take their pick.
The hall, where the ramp show is currently being held, has debarred children below 15 years. Two guys with Hercules-like physique make sure that even if a journalist comes in between the show the doors are closed for him. Inside the hall the fragrance of perfume wafts across and the music system pelts humming numbers. Just when some in the audiences stomps his feet, sleek and lissome, Nina Manuel, draped in black, walks in stilettos to mesmerise the crowd. She carries herself with aplomb and leaves deep impression of designer Malini Ramani's work. The emphasis is definitely on party wear rather than heavily embroidered stuff adorned in receptions. Models, all females, come bejewelled while some wwear loose bangles. The gazers go gaga over their well-toned bodies, some even suggesting that starvation is the key to get rid of flab while others, giving credit to punishing workouts laboured in the gym. Talking about her dress, she says, "My style is bohemian, vibrant and downright sexy like Rock Star meets Indian princess." Models have to shed their inhibitions while parading Ramani's wear.
Boom Boom Becker, that's the nickname of this former Wimbledon champion, makes a dekko at Rocky's show. Even as pretty girls are transfixed on the six feet two inch German hunk, the latter is swept off his feet by model Jesse Randhawa.
The much anticipated show of Rohit Bal is much more than on expected lines. A stickler for rules, he can be heard backstage screaming at models for their non-professionalism. A lady shrieks in high baritone, "C'mon boys" and this made male models, draped in all-black walk inside the hall for rehearsal. Model Shawas Ali says, "I'm recognised in Delhi as I'm doing commercials like for Kelvin Klien."
PUTTING THE BEST FOOT FORWARD: A model display of Malani Ramani, Rina Dhaka and Ashish Pandey's creations at the Lakme India Fashion Week in New Delhi. Photos: V.V. Krishnan.
Bal scores a small victory over his contemporaries -- though he has an all-male presentation he once again demonstrates his originality. He improvises his theme of Rock Star and the bursting-at-the-seams hall lapps up his collection of debonair jackets, trousers and shirts in fake leather. On models forehead Bal wraps nickel-finished silverware. All his accessories are in-house creations.
Bal, who has made a hat trick at Lakme, is blowing his own trumpet. He says, "I've created a sensation as people in this business of fashion are saying that they don't feel like attending another show."
As Delhi has missed droplets of rain, designer Neeta Bharghava showcases an array of resplendent colours. The look -- alive and kicking with kaleidoscopic colours. There's assimilation of kurtas, shrunk as is the latest fad, and slit trousers with scarves or stoles. The range has shades of azure and green so that brightness is heightened. Thereby reflecting the optimistic attitude of the wearer.
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