In a first-of-its-kind initiative, 14 upcoming designers created collections using fabrics and accessories of the participating exhibitors. The occasion: Textiles Fairs India Fashion Design Awards 2019. The Venue: Pragati Maidan, New Delhi. The awards, held in association with fashion guru Prasad Bidapa, focused on sustainable fashion. While the exhibitors saw their raw materials turn into readymade garments, the designers got a platform to display their skills – a win-win for both the parties.
The three-day fair saw the entire supply chain partners from fibre to fashion, showcasing their latest developments at the three shows – YARNEX, F&A Show and Fashion Connect – which witnessed participation of 265 manufacturers and suppliers from India, Austria, China, Hong Kong and Japan.
Speaking about the TFI Design Awards, PN Krishna Murthy, director at SS Textile Media Pvt Ltd that organised the Textile Fairs India, remarked that the awards were a step closer to integrating the supply chain in its true sense, something to which Bidapa agreed too. “India is one of the most technologically advanced countries in the production of manmade textiles.
Fabrics are the bedrock of fashion and every designer needs the best of fabrics, from suiting and shirting to dresses and gowns. And textile fairs are the venues where one can find the best fabric,” said Bidapa. Appreciating the idea of hosting such a contest, model and choreographer Nayanika Chatterjee said, “It’s a great opportunity for designers as it gives them access to varied fabrics.”
The winner of the TFI Fashion Design Award was Ruma Devi who runs a not-for-profit organisation aimed at sustainable development and growth of artisans and their communities in Rajasthan. “We started out in 1998 with 10 artisans. Today, we are a family of 22,000 dealing with handicrafts like applique and kantha work, and ensuring a balance of culture and aesthetics.” Her collection was inspired by ‘a ray of hope’, which emerges unexpectedly when there seems no way. She is also the recipient of the Union government’s Nari Shakti Puruskar 2018, given to her for uplifting the status of rural women through self help groups.
Other designers who stood out included Arushi Kilawat, Aishwarya Iyenger, Ashish Satyavrat sahu, Nitisha Chajer, Jigyasa Jolly, Sadhvi Dang and Padma Raj Keshri. Kilawat gave a contemporary twist to the age-old technique of block printing and hand embroidery – her unique motifs and flowing organic line adding elegance to the amalgamation of casual and occasion wear. Iyengar, meanwhile, showcased a fine collection of work wear comprising crop top paper bag pants and kurta dresses using her grandma’s saris and haberdashery. Ashish Satyavrat Sahu tried to capture the innocence of childhood through his collection Vidyalaya, while Devika Dhanyuni’s Alpha Female celebrated women empowerment.
Both Chajer and Jolly seem inspired by saris – Chajer reinvented the concept of six yards with pleats, tucks and drapes, and Jolly came up with sculpted pant saris to match the global standards. Keshri’s collection, Re_Denim, used waste fabric mainly involved in post-production of denim pieces, while Dan’s Satrangi adapted Gond art in a modern format.