Wednesday marked the start of the Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week. The autumn-winter edition of the fashion week saw 82 designers showcasing their work over five days. Buyers from London, Paris, Tokyo and Europe lined up to pick and choose from among the best Indian fashion has to offer.
I have been following up the collections over the past few days and only a few really stood out for me. I look for designs that truly say “Indian” and not appear to be inspiration-starved interpretations of “Western” trends. One designer who hit a home run as far as my aesthetic sensibilities are concerned, is Priyadarshini Rao.
This year, the designer presented a very contemporary ethnic collection, with perfectly blended western influences. The highlights of the collection were a range of Kurtas and tops worn with churidars, saris worn with trendy bubble-tops, full length skirts with long jackets and empire line kurtas.
Priyadarshini is not a designer to shy away from color and colors were aplenty in her collection with ochres, olive greens, rusty reds, mud browns, orange, pink and turquoise blue making an appearance.
What I loved about the uber trendy bubble tops were the seamless way they can transition from a blouse to a perfect match for a pair of skinny jeans.
Pleated cuffs on the kurtas were another charming feature of the collection. In fact, the pleats were an integral part of her designs this year. They were there, on the sleeves, on the kurtas , and on the tops worn as blouses with long skirts or saris.
She gave the puffed sleeves a sleeker avatar, adding yet more character to the kurta dresses. I say kurta dresses, because some of them really could be worn as dresses. Priyadarshini has played with fabrics, getting playful now and then with motifs. Like in the kurta below, where a summery motif balances the warm colors of the dress.
Priyadarshini’s designs work on the wearability and minimalism principles. And this collection too was a reflection of her style that has made her one of the better selling designers in India. Her silhouettes are flattering and uncomplicated. And she works well with natural fabrics, creating collections that are a reflection of international trends, but with very Indian sensibilities.
I find her collection complete, with her designs transcending day and night wearability. I can see myself wearing her clothes for just about any occasion, such is her versatility.
# All photographs, courtesy yahoo.com