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A dummies guide to style

A new fashion experiment brings together a fashion designer, photographer as well as hair and makeup artistes. The quartet will work on dummies individually —Bhavnani will place wacky hairpieces on them, while Gupta wraps them in her collection.

fashion and trends Updated: Jun 11, 2011 13:56 IST
Megha Mahindru

If you’ve visited celebrity hairstylist, Sapna Bhavnani’s Mad-O-Wot lately, chances are your tresses are on display at a city pub this weekend. As bizarre as it may sound, Bhavnani has been working on a new fashion experiment, The Kalingar Project, for over a month now, by literally refusing to bury the hatchet. “I’ve worked on these hair pieces alone, collecting leftover hair of clients at my salon,” confesses Bhavnani, who has prepared wacky coiffure moulds for the exhibit.

As part of the project, Bhavnani will tie up with fashion designer Masaba Gupta, make-up artist Meghna Butani and photographer Joy Datta to play ‘dress-up’ to 11 mannequins. “Fashion and hair are hardly considered art in our country. Art tends to be restricted to framed paintings in galleries. I wanted to move away from runways and fashion shows and place them outside their familiar territory,” says the heavily tattooed coiffure queen.


Bhavnani explains that she opted for mannequins as her canvas since she “wanted to give it an cold, gallery feel — a show sans movement.”

Gupta, who has picked an array of colour-block dresses, saris and jackets from her autumn/winter 2010 and spring/summer 2011 collections for the event, says she was just working with one thing in mind. “I hadn’t seen the hair pieces, but I knew they would be over-the-top. So I picked some kitsch, edgy stuff that wasn’t in my prêt collection.” And why the name Kalingar? Gupta replies, “It was the first thing I thought of. And we were working on the project when it was melting hot, so a watermelon just seemed apt.”

The quartet will work on dummies individually —Bhavnani will place wacky hairpieces on them, while Gupta wraps them in her collection. Lensman Dutta’s photographs of models donning identical hair and clothes as the mannequins, will be projected on a screen during the event. “The idea is to get young talent involved. We hope to make it an annual event that works as a platform for youngsters in the industry to showcase their talent. Many people have edgy designs, but they need the boost and avenue to showcase their creative outpourings,” adds Gupta.