When you talk about fashion and saree in the South, especially in a city like Chennai, it may seem a little unrelated. After all, isn’t it a daily wear that doesn’t have any particular occasion? It is not as in the North, where wearing a saree assumes fashion proportions, depending on the occasion like a party or a wedding.
Vijayanthi Rajeswar’s VJI is already a known page on Facebook. In just nine months of the launch, today her clientele is spread across the globe from South Africa to Australia.
Using a variety of fabrics like chiffon, raw silks, crepe silk and brasso, VJI also has a large emphasis on the half and half saree. Rajeswar says, “Half and half saree is a big hit among women who don’t like elaborate work. Many colours used together can actually create the same richness and elegance.”
Making customised orders for women in various age groups, Rajeswar talks about how customising sarees is the fad among women. “There are a lot of specifications when it comes to a saree. With different preferences, customising orders is a natural choice for them. But, the real challenge is by making it as personalised as it can get. Since there are other saree outlets, customers have to be really convinced about buying a VJI saree. That is why most of the designs here are one piece,” she says.
Apart from sarees, VJI also customises dresses that again have a niche market. The price begins from Rs 3500.
Chunky and chic
Semis precious, precious stones, and silver have their own charm. Apart from being toned down as compared to garish metals like gold, they also have the advantage of being versatile. Couple them with a saree, or a tunic or maybe evening a dress.
‘Strings and Beads’ by Archana Avinash celebrates the metaphysical properties of every stone. Each of the material used, from the beads to the stones, are certified by the Gemology Institute of America. The range of accessories like bracelets, neckpieces and earrings promise to add dollops of style quotient. Avinash says, “Strings and Beads also has charm bracelets for different purposes from love bracelets to fertility bracelets that are personalised according to their needs.”
Talking about the other items on display, she says, “The stones have been sourced from a number of places and they also have an influence from the designs of the Middle East.” Avinash has a design unit in Kathmandu, Nepal.
Krimasha is another brand of fashion jewellery that takes inspiration from the many designs that are popular across the world. Gems and stones from Prague and Budapest, the stress is as much on the designs as it is on the contemporary look that reflects world fashion.
Krishma Sankar the designer says, “Each piece if very different and are versatile in the senses they are Indo-Western jewellery and nothing like what you see in the market today.”
If you are in Chennai and have been braving the humidity all through the year, you possibly know the importance of cotton in your home décor. Haute Décor a brand that specialises in soft furnishing for you home has a range of products that find relevance in the city. Operating out of Chennai, Vidya Arun and Puja Iyer, have their production unit in Valasaravakkam. They say, “You will find everything from bed sheets, towels to mats here. The focus is on quality, as the thread count is high compared to products you find in the market today.”
Fashion Souk is on at Asharaa Living No 18 & 20, Bheemanna Garden Road, Abhiramapuram till July 9.