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A tale of two styles

Designer Sandeep Khosla examines and dissects the fashion sensibilities of Delhi and Mumbai. Read on... Your Take

india Updated: Aug 20, 2006 18:42 IST

Designer Sandeep Khosla examines and dissects the fashion sensibilities of Delhi and Mumbai. Read on...

The battlelines have been drawn. Gameplans executed, adapted and abandoned. It’s a fight to the kill and only the strongest city will survive to be crowned the style capital of India. Luckily, the smaller players have now surrendered, leaving us with a two-town contest between Mumbai and New Delhi. Game on.

There is no singular or satisfactory definition of style. Alas, it’s one of those annoyingly indescribable things. We know it when we see it, but can never quite come up with a comfy, convenient definition. It defies all rules, especially the physical, because style is much more than the sum of all its parts.

And no matter how often the self-proclaimed pundits amongst us might try to convince you otherwise, it cannot be quantified. Or reduced to a sheaf of silly what’s in, what’s out lists. Because when it comes to style, it’s all about the X factor. The je ne sais quoi quotient. 
 
Borrowed feathers

Mumbai’s real edge lies in its greater level of exposure. Its citizens are better educated about both fashion and fine living. The city breeds a better class of style victim  

Here’s an unhappy truth. Indian urban chic doesn’t exist. Delhiites and Mumbaikars have indeed expanded their minds and wallets. And that’s commendable in itself.



I’m told by a friend that there are a whopping 20 fashion magazines published in the country. And every colony from Ghatkopar to Greater Kailash has at least five designer boutiques. So what’s my problem, you ask? Surely this means our big city cousins exude style?

Well, they might be sipping their Chablis, dressed in Prada, ensconced in their spectacularly minimalist mansions, before they slip out for a quick bite at their local Japanese / Russian / Lebanese restaurant, but they still manage to score a big fat zero when it comes to possessing an innate style sensibility.