AIFW grand finale: An orange affair
The grand finale of the Amazon India Fashion Week (AIFW) Autumn/Winter 2015 in the Capital was a true spectacle. For the first time ever, 25 of the biggest names in the fashion fraternity presented two of their very best designs, especially created in orange for the ‘Crafts of India’ theme that celebrated the 25th edition of the esteemed style event. The fashion roster was nothing short of an extravagant pageant as one glamourous creation after another was presented by couturiers Rohit Bal, Manish Malhotra, Tarun Tahiliani, Manish Arora, J.J.
Valaya, Suneet Varma, Namrata Joshipura, Sabyasachi Mukherjee, Anju Modi, Ritu Kumar, Varun Bahl, Rina Dhaka, Rohit Gandhi & Rahul Khanna, Raghavendra Rathore, Gaurav Gupta, Pankaj & Nidhi, Rahul Mishra, Abraham & Thakore, Ashish N. Soni, Anamika Khanna, Aneeth Arora, Monisha Jaising, Rajesh Pratap Singh, Amit Agarwal and Wendell Rodricks.
The show was set in a haveli stage set-up with traditional Rajasthani puppets on either side of the runway. A palace-like mirror-bedecked arch in the middle and live musicians set the mood with their renditions of songs like Chhaap Tilak. The very first ensemble charged the atmosphere with electric appreciation, with Rodricks’ overtly risque and superbly sexy pink and orange tulle halter dress, held together at the waist by one silver band. After that there was no looking back. Mishra won over the audience with his genius craftsmanship on a layered shirt and pencil skirt while Soni made the ramp chic with fitted silhouettes. Pankaj & Nidhi played with laser-cut patterns on capes and coats while Agarwal presented his structured best in a sweeping red carpet gown.
As for Indian wear, the vibe was tempered with kitsch and cool by Arora and his use of gota-patti, metallic bibs and gold sequin churidars. Varma, meanwhile, played with his re-discovered love for mirror work on a dazzling long jacket. Spectators termed Khanna a “pure genius” for a sophisticated look of a bright dhoti skirt teamed with a choli, and a drape embellished with coins and exquisite traditional threadwork from Rajasthan. Moving on to the bridal side, Sabyasachi picked a dull orangegold palette for the lehenga and bandhgala long coat for women, and a printed achkan-churidar for men even as Ritu Kumar stuck to gold brocade work on a signature lehenga set. Bal, of course, stole the show with his crinkled maroon lehenga and velvet long coat, the orange and pink bell-sleeved shirt, multiple borla tikas and his characteristic and spirited jig on stage.
The stylish cavalcade of the 50 best designs got a standing ovation, a befitting tribute to the labour of love poured in by the big names of the Indian fashion industry. The next season for spring/summer 2016 is scheduled for October 14-18, 2015 in the Capital.