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Debutante Singhania shows heritage of class

Traditional in essence but contemporary in expression, Vidhi Singhani's collection made use of hand-woven traditional Indian fabrics like the kotah maisuria, benarasi brocades, tissues and silks and created a collection of practical day and eveningwear for the modern Indian woman who still feels close to her heritage, reports Sunanda Kumar.
PTI | By Sunanda Kumar, New Delhi
UPDATED ON APR 30, 2004 08:46 PM IST

Traditional in essence but contemporary in expression, Vidhi Singhani's collection made use of hand-woven traditional Indian fabrics like the kotah maisuria, benarasi brocades, tissues and silks and created a collection of practical day and eveningwear for the modern Indian woman who still feels close to her heritage.

The clothes were unmistakably Indian, but in a very non-traditional sort of way. In fact it wouldn't be wrong to say that Kotah has gone international under Singhania's watchful gaze.

Primary colours like red, black, blue and white dominated the collection. Silhouettes were straight with a vague 60's influence that surfaced in the short kurtas-churidars and sequinned flowers pinned to the hair.

Singhania, in her maiden appearance at the India Fashion Week, impressed with the sheer variety of her work. Apart from churidar kurtas and lehengas, there was a fair sprinkling of western-wear as well in the form of cigarette pants, tank tops and a modernized version of the dhoti that has been surfacing elsewhere on the ramp too. A pair of black and gold brocade slim pants worn with a jet-black silk tank top with a high neck and gold sequins on the collar, was quite easily the star of the show.

Accessories included plenty of armlets, 'jhumkis' and 'potlis'.

The lehengas were more up market with gorgeous cuts and kali work in jewel tones. The crowd was rendered speechless when a model walked down the ramp in a burnt gold lehenga with a simple yet stunning choli.

Singhania, known for her contribution in developing, nurturing and keeping alive the traditional Kotah weaves, admits it's a challenge working with the fabric. "It doesn't fall well, but I had to use it - after all, it's part of our heritage," she insists. The designer also said that while her lehengas were 'quite expensive', one could always buy separates like sari blouses priced as low as Rs 900.

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