The 24th batch of five Gen Next designers presented by INIFD was a creative display of talent and fashion, at the opening show during Lakmé Fashion Week Winter/Festive 2017. The Gen Next shows have brought forth great fashion talents like Nachiket Barve, Rahul Mishra, Aneeth Arora, Kallol Datta, Ujjawal Dubey and a host of names that have made it big in the fashion industry.
Akshat Bansal – A Traditional/Contemporary Blend
It was an amalgamation of techniques learnt from design gurus like Tarun Tahiliani, Dolly J, Bada Saab, Cad and the Dandy London that Akshat Bansal brought on the ramp with his label ‘Bloni’. The inspiration was unconventional – the snow clad mountains and science of nature that was cleverly recreated in a black/white monochrome look. Crochet as well as tie-and-dye gave an androgynous depth to the clothes as ombré loose Bermudas, kurtas, shirts and churidars appeared in quick succession on the runway. The fabric choice was a mix of Chanderi with Italian crêpes that turned the traditional and modern textiles into contemporary western silhouettes with great ease.
Striking pieces on the ramp were all in black and white with the tree motif appearing in strategic places for men’s and women’s wear. Kurtas were layered, trousers were fluid and ankle length, asymmetric tunics were teamed with cropped pants and the midi with a flowing coat were ideal for the coming season.
Deepak Pathak – Stylish Study In Techniques
With a thorough grounding in fashion from experts like Sabyasachi Mukherjee, Manish Malhotra and Patine, Deepak Pathak’s ‘Integument’ line was a stylish study in techniques like jacquard knitting and flock printing. Using a variety of fabrics – felt, wool blends, twill suiting and knitted tulle – the collection inspired by Bengali fishermen had clever drapes, twists, tucks and sharp tailoring. The clean, fuss-free silhouettes were highlighted only by black and grey but were further embellished with doodled artworks. Long sleeved maxis moulded the body with sashes, while the sensuous shapes added to the feminine appeal of the ensembles.
Knits made a great impact on the ramp as black layered tunic/pant and gilet caught the eye. The asymmetric knit dress, grey midi with coat, palazzos with trench coat and the wrap knitted maxi could move with great ease from dawn to dusk.
Sumiran Kabir Chawla – Fierce Fluid Fashion
With a high profile client list starting with Ali Fazal, Sapna Bhawnani, Karan Tacker and Sara Jane Dias, Sumiran Kabir Chawla’s ‘Anaam’ label; was inspired by ‘Sonagachi’ (Kolkata’s Red Light District). It was a look that evoked visions of a rampaging warriors’ army in flowing uniforms that had an arresting appeal. Here was a strong, fierce, nameless, ageless, genderless, line of clothing that could move seamlessly from HIS to HER wardrobe. Using a mix of ingenious draping and pattern making techniques that ensured zero fabric wastage, the wool and wool blends were turned into black toga like maxis, unstructured midis and shawl covers.
Men’s and women’s wear could be interchanged effortlessly as black and grey appeared for capes, wrap skirts, tunics, a combo of cape and jacket, draped hem kaftans and a striking maxi with a trail and shoulder drape. The quirky hats added to the look of the ensembles giving them an almost surreal appearance.
Shenali Sema And Rinzin Lama – Oriental Visions
The label ‘Untitled Co.’ by Shenali Sema and Rinzin Lama has had the honour of an original design technique and concept selected by the globally renowned label Kenzo.
Having worked with designers like Varun Sardana, Anna Sui, New York, Morphe as well as Reliance Retail and Creative Impex, the designing duo presented interesting embroidery techniques coupled with clever fabric manipulation that brought to the forefront the nostalgic Japanese print making art. Using treadle embroidered, single stitch technique, along with cutwork and heat-set micro pleating, the result was a feminine look. In addition, it was the double softened, washed, grainy, polyester, georgette, embellished with hand embroidered knotting technique on cotton mesh that added pizazz to the garments.
Pastel shades of beige and watery blue had delicate floral prints; while the silhouettes were relaxed and feminine with maxis, wrap slit midis and covers.
Pretty as a picture were the lovely soft covers, maxis with wide-sleeved jackets, long-sleeved smocks, drop-waist skirts or dresses and the intriguing long or short striped pullovers that made a great impact on the catwalk.
Saaksha Parekh And Kinnari Kamat – Understated Glamour
When it came to understated glamour the ‘Saaksha and Kinni’ label by Saaksha Parekh and Kinnari Kamat presented ‘Amourage’, which was a symphony in chiffon and Chanderi that merged beautifully with metal woven sheets and was highlighted with thread and cut work. Inspired by the life of Tomoe Gozen the 12th century warrior woman whose feminine Samurai attitude was a blend of grit, tenderness and grace along with temerity, the rigid stripes over dazzling creations were the designing pair’s apt offering. Swirls of feminine navy sheers were dappled with delicate floral blossoms for a feminine maxi.
The deep red tiered frilled maxi with gold embroidered gilet, pleated bell-sleeved maxi and cover, striped jackets, black maxi with skirt with beaded tasseled blouse, the shimmering horizontal striped skirt with printed cover or the printed layered skirt with cropped blouse were superb additions in the presentation.
Adding to the Gen Next creations was the innovative black facial painting and the sleek hair by Lakmé Makeup Expert, Donald Simrock for the five designers’ collections that was the highlight of the show.