Critical review


organized mess

I do love the Monster.

Ashish Soni retrospective

Ashish Soni is a designer who’s shows I’ve not seen too many of. My first brush with the name was around ten years ago when in a Teen Vogue his dress was featured in a fashion shoot. The dress was gold and white, simple and very New York-ey. On seeing that one dress I had decided the designer to have a clean, global sensibility, which could be the reason why it blend in Teen Vogue seamlessly.

When I got the opportunity to see an exhibition celebrating 20 years of the designer’s work, I couldn’t wait to see more from a designer who’s numbered creations I had witnessed.  I hoped my imagined sensibility would hold true for the designer.

Well, my imagination was more or less accurate but with major loop holes. Realized Ashish is known for his WHITE SHIRT and SHIRT DRESSES. He started his career working with designer ROHIT BAL while still studying in NIFT. He designed the staff uniform for PVR CINEMAS nationwide. Did a COUTURE WOMENSWEAR SHOW at the Indian French Embassy. Was recognized early on in 2005 by IHT’s SUZY MENKES as a designer to put forth an Indian vision other than the “familiar boho-meets Bollywood” theme we are overrun with still.

Besides the education on the brand, the display was A-class and carried forth his sensibility in a thought out manner. The Aman hotel was divided into 4 sections – menswear, film of interviews from industry people, original film depicting the sensibility, and ‘Absolut Lab’ which consisted of installations inspired by his collaboration with Absolut on their bottle called by the same name. To me the womenswear display was most interesting – a set of mannequins stylized in womens line from the 20 years displayed along with knacks from his shows like invites, designer accreditation cards etc.


Lakshmi Puja

Lakshmi Rana for Rohit Bal show
 Fell in love this fashion week for a veteran model. I don’t know what it was -her glowing brown skin, he Buddha like demure, her almond shape eyes.. sigh could go on and on. A great role model for new models I feel. Some images of model Lakshmi Rana from this Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week February 2012:

at Abraham + Thakore

at Rahul Mishra

at Raakesh Aggarwal

James Ferriera | Fall Winter 2012

Color bomb collection by a usually color-demure designer. Highlighting Indian traditional fabrics in a sexy way. I imagine a Malini Ramani-esque free spirited party girl somewhere who only wears James Ferreira – morning, night and in between. 

Anand Kabra | Fall Winter 2012

Inspired by the Japanese spiritual act of water cleansing, the model definitely seemed like they dipped in a tub of fashion cleansing before walking out on the runway. With wet drenched hair, minimal makeup, the clothes were edited of the frou frou and had clean lines throughout. Though the designer did not miss on his signature Indian traditional wear looks, they were as well tailored in a modern manner. I love the new direction fashion is headed in the coming season – sticking with the basic requirements yet making it not too basic or boring.

Abraham + Thakore | Fall Winter 2012

 David Abraham and Rakesh Thakore are a few season old designers. No, they are not new to designing, but they decided to take part in fashion week just a couple of years ago. And a good decision that was. Their focus is on fabric and textiles (which is what they studied at NID) but the interpretation of their collection comes alive on the models mixed with hair, makeup, accessories – which are made in-house as well. This time I felt the girl was the Indian version of Gwyneth Paltrow’s character from The Royal Tenenbaums. dark, edgy, cool, knows what she likes and more importantly dislikes, likes to wear clothes that girls her age won’t consider “the IN thing”. This is the girl I would stalk if I saw her on the street in hopes to get some crazy style shots of.



Rohit Bal | Fall Winter 2012

Call it winter or summer wear; ready-to-wear or couture, incomplete or minimal; the collection was worthy of an exhibit and I enjoyed the dramatic model show wearing white underlining slip and jeweled faces. Some images from my iPhone of the showing:

all images are owned by lovestruckcow

Gaurav Gupta | Fall Winter 2012

Gaurav Gupta is one of the few young guns left showing at Fashion Week who like to play… unsafe? 

His cuts were out of the ordinary combined with signature use of zippers, and non linear stitching and draping. If you are looking for something out of the norm, he is your go to guy. Wish he would have a separate line in case he felt like playing safe / “commercial:” – evening gowns, flowing dresses, saris and lehngas.. as his ready to wear shows will always carry the expectations to excite the audience even more than his last time. 

Pero by Aneeth Arora | Fall Winter 2012

Wear your heart on the sleeve takes a new meaning. Aneeth Arora’s vision for the next winter was a postcard perfect snuggly one. With chunky knits in mulled shades of blue, oatmeal, mustard, grey, and the boldest shade being red of which the pattern of a lone heart emerged on the pullovers. Her girl it seems puts comfort above all. No, she puts the art of layering and styling above all. Maybe Aneeth could uncover the dynamics of her girl, but to me the girl is comfortable in her skin and doesnt care much about what is ‘in’ or ‘out’ of ‘fashion’. She just likes to have heads turn and notice her innate sense of style. It definitely made me want to click each look in as many angles I could…