India has always inspired designers.
International luxury brands have boldly used Indian motifs, symbols, embroideries and textiles for years. Balenciaga, Hermes, and Jean-Paul Gaultier have used saris in the construction of their designs. Stella McCartney, Galliano and Armani have used traditional Indian elements like the Nehru collar. Michael Kors, the late Alexander Mcqueen, Oscar de La Renta, Marchesa, and Badgley Mischka have used Indian textiles and embroideries.
These designers have been successful because their approach to all things “Indian” hasn’t been too overt or literal. I am a firm believer that a small whiff of India goes a long way.
The latest success story belongs to Gwen Stefani and her newest collection for L.A.M.B.
For spring 2012, she combined a “Maharaja” theme with the Rat Pack and bright electrics. Sound strange? It worked! L.A.M.B.’s signature look is the flirty tomboy which this season translated to jumpsuits, zip-up jackets and shorts, Indian jewelry, dropped crotches, neon blues and bold reds, wide-legged pants, and heavy winged liner.
For me- it was her choice of prints that stole the show! Filled with ikat prints, sari borders, bold graphics, stripes, and zigzags, the pieces were totally edgy and electrifying.
I don’t know how she does it, but she once again found a balance between tomboy ease and intense sex appeal, and this time, topped with electrifying Indian energy.