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Evolution to excellence

Post-WLIFW, one thing was clear, Indian designers are capable of reinventing themselves every season, writes Vinod Nair.

fashion and trends Updated: Oct 21, 2008 19:11 IST
Front row view | Vinod Nair

Saturday was the day of many surprises. As some of the best collections invaded the fashion runway at the Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week, one thing was clear, Indian designers are quite capable of reinventing themselves season after season.

Two shows kept guests waiting well beyond their stipulated starting timing and both were shows worth waiting for.

At the last show on Saturday, the reticent designer of India’s fashion industry, Rajesh Pratap Singh, reiterated that less talk more work could also do wonders for our fashion designers. At his best show ever, one of the best ever I have seen ever, he came out with a collection that screamed “less is more” employing yokes, pleats, graded pleats, insert seams and a generous display of well-executed pin-tucks that the designer is well known for. Silhouettes were body flattering and it came both in fitted and fluid formats such as dresses, dhoti pants and skirts, tunics and shirts leaving the audience asking for more!

Yet another turn around was that of J J Valaya for his label Valaya Base. This time the designer made sure that predictable looks are passé so much so that without the label’s name on the backdrop one would never have thought that the collection belonged to him. His clever interpretation of colours, graphic prints, solid hues in contemporary silhouettes were a pleasant thing to watch. Also important for a designer such as Valaya who has different labels from his House, was to make this one stand out completely from the rest and the designer successfully managed to do just that.

The other surprise of the day came from Vikram Phadnis. He has evolved. Until a few seasons ago, I would get confused wondering what he wants to do on the runway. Then during the last couple of seasons I saw him changing. But this time he completely turned around to show that he means business. The collection was beautifully executed with an exquisite line up of saris, dresses both long and short, using different fabric panels on the same outfit and that did make a statement on the runway. Also noticed was his attention to detail with accessories and shoes (embroidered ones that looked just beautiful).

Payal Jain proved herself on the fashion runway with continuation of looks that linked one set from the other with colourful embroidery and prints whereas Anita Dongre too came out with a collection that was pretty and well finished. Other presentations on the day included Abdul Haider, Sonia Jetleey, Nida Mahmood, Elisha W, Lalit Jalan and Swapan & Seema.

At the Delhi Fashion Week on the other side of the city, Anamika Khanna closed the event with her grand finale collection.