By: Shilpa Reddy
Well, it’s been a while since I visited Mumbai to be at the Lakme Fashion Week. Lets say 4 years !! Before I have always been here as a model and this is the first time I saw every thing around me as a designer. Trust me every thing looked very different. Change of perspective makes you see and notice many things in a different light. Things you never thought existed, like the people I am interested to meet and get to know are different, my entire business of being here is different, my source of inspiration is different. Well, also lot has changed in the past years, fashion industry is moving at a very fast pace, I saw bloggers every where, so many of them, magazine editors, store owners, domestic and global buyers, PR personnel, fashion is damn serious business!!!
So much new talent!!! Being here sure does inspires you!
Creativity is only an imagination until it’s executed, it’s only as big as a brain cell. To see all that imagination come to life here is what overwhelms me, everyone’s thought process so different and intriguing, gives you so much to get inspired and intrigued.
Well, I chose to come on day one only because two of my dearest friends and extremely talented designers from my hometown Hyderabad, Asmita Marwa and Suhani Pittie were showcasing their collections.
As soon as I landed in Mumbai, the energy started hitting me. While, I was checking in at the Grand Hyatt, guess whom I ran into Manish Malhotra, I walked for him several times as a model. Felt nice reconnecting with him, he has not changed a bit. He invited us for his show in the evening, ‘100 Years of Indian Cinema’ and that was super fun, but more on that later.
Models Mashoom Singha, Binal Trivedi and Carol Gracias my dearest friends took us for our first show, ‘Zovi Gen-Next’ where six young designers, Debashri Samanta, Karishma Jamval, Ragini Ahuja, Shubham Kumar, Sneha S Saha, and Stephany D’Souza, showcased their collections. The young talent out there is amazing, one of my personal favorites was Shubham Kumar’s collection, loved the color pallets and his perfect understanding of the fabric to construct the garments.
Next came Asmita Marwa’s collection, it was very effortless and true to her design sensibility, it oozed of the 70’s Zeenat Aman style, the choice of music for the show was so good, it sure did have an impact and synced with the collection beautifully, my dearest friend Shriya was the show stopper, she looked ethereal. Asmita rightly said the look will go down in history, Shriya has never been given a look even close to what Asmita has.
The show after hers was Narendra Kumar. There was a lot of drama with almost 40 tough, tall & dark men marched onto the ramp in uniforms and called themselves the thought police. It sure was entertaining!
Next was Suhani Pittie’s show. I always think of her as an intelligent designer who expresses her craft fearlessly. She nailed it yet another time. The collection took us to the Navajos in America. The hair, the music, and not to miss the clothes and the drape were complimenting each other in perfect harmony. My eye fell on the bare feet and white paint line around the left ankle. I want to own not one but four to five pieces from this collection. High up on my list are the earrings, which cover the entire ear, so getting them for sure!!
Suhani’s show was followed by Debarun and Amalraj Gupta’s collections. I loved Debarun’s prints would love to pick one of those sarees he showed.
Miss Malini invited us for the after party she was co-hosting for Masaba and Shivan Narresh. We watched the show on TV since Hyatt streams them live to the rooms. Masaba’s collection Iike always had quirk prints, loved ‘Table fan’ printed saree’s with long sheer blouse like a fitted long dress worn on top of it. That was totally out of the box.
The last and oh-so inspiring, Manish Malhotra’s collection was true to the theme of Indian Cinema and its transition over the years. My favorite was the old Bollywood era, spotted Christian Louboutin in the front row, the show stoppers for that evening were many but Asha Bhosle ji stole the show and got a standing ovation. Deep in my heart I hope to have the same spirit when I get old, must say she inspired me on many different levels.
Hunger pangs kicked in post the show, and we headed to China Town for dinner, this place can never go wrong can it?!
The second day of the Fahsion Week did not disappoint, when all the memories were fresh from last night and still brought a smile in our faces, we happened to meet Manisha Malhotra again having breakfast. I could see pride in his face and why not! He is the only one who can pull off a show like last nights with so many stars who come for him because he is their friend. It struck me! What makes you love someone so much? He is humble, grounded and at the same time he takes pride in his achievements. It all manifested when he embraced and welcomed me on seeing me after three long years.
Mumbai is a place which does not get threatened with new talent. They welcome you with both arms and believe if you have it in you you will make it. What a great attitude to live by huh!
Anushree Reddy another friend from Hyderabad was showing that say at the talent box. So excited we could be there to cheer! It’s raining Hyderabad at Lakme. Her collection was very fairy tale like, romantic, feminine and a bit vintage.
We checked out all the designer’s kiosks and admired fashion. Not to miss mentioning, I ordered a beautiful piece of jewelry from Outhouse. Love their sensibility, a bit like MAWI, what I bought is definitely a statement piece. Well being me, I had to shop for something amazing and that put me at peace coming to Mumbai marking the end of my trip. Already missing home. Got my booster shot which Mumbai gives me every single time I come here.
Keep watching will soon return as a participating designer at Lakme!!