Recreating Royalty From the Loom

Tradition blended in modernity, symbolic of the British Raj but cleverly entwined with Indian craftsmanship is what ‘Calico’, Gaurang Shah’s collection for the upcoming LFW is all about.

Published: 29th March 2016 05:13 AM  |   Last Updated: 29th March 2016 05:13 AM   |  A+A-


HYDERABAD: Valuing the aesthetics of Indian royalty in the early 20th century and traditional Indian textiles with vintage silhouettes, Gaurang Shah, the Hyderabad-based textile and fashion designer is all set to present his exquisite Spring Summer 2016 collection, ‘Calico’ at the Lakme Fashion Week this month.

“Each attire from this collection is crafted from hand-woven textiles in khadi, uppada and kota using the jamdani technique. The patterns are woven with a non-structural weft resulting in bright patterns that plays across the fabric,” says the Hyderabad-based designer.

Recreatinga.jpgBringing out the richness of traditional Indian sarees through a fusion of two different styles, Gaurang has mixed the royal Lucknowi Chikankari embroidery work with Jamdani. “Chikankari is an iconic embroidery which is both subtle and stunning. A collaboration of weaves and techniques, my collection emphasises the rich and vibrant history of Indian craftsmanship while bringing out the beauty of Indian women,” he added.

Working with weavers across India, Gaurang’s designs begin at the loom and emerge from the royalty. “Dedicated to keep the legacy alive, these fabrics are hand woven by our craftsmen. It sometimes takes over six months for master weavers to complete a single piece. Every ensemble is exclusive as each set emerges from a single loom,” Guarang explains.

The gowns designed by Gaurang features popular silhouettes from the Belle Epoch period. Gaurang has managed to bring back different styles which once defined famous women in Indian society with certain modifications. “Chimnabai’s signature style of Navari drape will be seen in the new millennium with a long jacketed blouse whereas Sunity Devi’s signature style of draping the saree as a gown will create a stunning style statement. The traditional saree subtly reinvented into a garment, is the epitome of modern India,” he says.

The early 20th century which is believed to be the period where the Indian society underwent a major transformation, has inspired the Hyderabadi designer to experiment with diverse historical textiles and techniques to bring alive the past. “The early 20th century witnessed the peak of colonial rule in India. Wealthy and influential were rubbing shoulders with their colonial counterparts as equals, resulting in a unique blend of cultures, symbolic of the British Raj those days,” Gaurang explains.

“Respecting centuries of tradition and heritage, while embracing modernity, the Maharanis of this era harnessed in their aesthetics to make a powerful statement with their outfits is the concept I am going to present at the show this year,” he says. Gaurang’s Calico would be showcased at the Lakme Fashion Week on March 31 in Mumbai.


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