This August, just like every year, Lakmé Fashion Week rolled up punctually bringing with it a bag full of trends, designers, street style and fashion to define the upcoming festive season. This year the fashion fraternity—stalwarts and new entrants alike—came together to celebrate 20 years of one of the country’s biggest fashion weeks. We chart out some of the week’s highlights, and bring you these collections fresh off-the-runway.
This season, Hyderabad-designer Anushree Reddy showcased a bridal collection that was an ode to flowers and their exquisite natural fragrance. ‘Gulaal’ housed ethereal lehengas, blouses, dupattas and gowns in Chanderi, tulle and silk organza that epitomised romance. Delicate embroidery juxtaposed with ornate embellishments created a look that was sensuous and youthful without being overbearing.
Trust textiles and fashion designer Gaurang Shah to give you a stylish lesson in history. His collection took inspiration from 18th century clothing from the rule of Peshwa Bajirao. Whites, yellows, oranges and reds stood out in silhouettes that encapsulated traditions of a royal era. We witnessed saris, gold borders, lehengas and sherwanis in heritage weaves like Bandhani, Paithani and more. Shop this collection at the Gaurang at Aashni + Co store at 47 Ledbury Road in London.
When your inspiration is drawn from the holy city of Varanasi you can expect magic. Jayanti Reddy’s collection ‘Benares and Beyond’ saw traditional Benarasi fabrics interspersed with sheer organza and net to give it a fluid feel. Motifs from nature like mangoes and flowers graced the ensembles that were doused in colours like ivory, beige, pista green, hot pink and wine.
Surface texturing. Sequinned embellishments. Free-flowing silhouettes. Textile designer Kshitij Jalori’s maiden collection for LFW had all this and more. Glamorous and ultra chic, each piece in the collection also accounted for maximum comfort making it the wardrobe of everyone’s festive dreams.
With a focus on Indian heirlooms, Kunal Rawal’s collection ‘Confluence’ was dedicated to modern-day grooms who have style on their mind. Deconstruction, layering and grunge were still keywords keeping the signature Kunal Rawal aesthetic in mind.
LABEL RITU KUMAR
Power design house Label Ritu Kumar presented its ’Structured Pastoral’ collection this year. The brand’s signature prints were seen parading on everything from body-hugging dresses to flouncy skirts and draped blouses to slouchy trousers. Colours like red and black ruled the roost with other pop hues added in for extra effect.
Bollywood bestie Manish Malhotra opened LFW this season with his collection ‘Maahrumysha’. Extravagance was the name of the game as models sashayed under a glittering chandelier in east-meets-west, festive-friendly outfits that showcased an array of textures, embellishments and fabrics — think cotton, tulle, velvet, silk and wool.
Celebrating 20 years in the industry, veteran designer Payal Singhal‘s celebratory collection was called ‘PS20’. Drawing inspiration from bohemia and gypsies of yore, the clothes were boho-cool with detailing like tassels, sequins, leather embroidery, thread and patchwork in free-flowing fabrics like organza, tulle, crepe and georgette.
Designer Punit Balana’s collection was an ode to the Rabari women and the brilliant textiles and embroidery they create. Titled ‘Rabaari’, the collection housed intricate amla, mirror and dori work on saris, lehengas, maxi dresses, skirts, tops and separates that married bandhani with stripes.
Called ‘Sindh’, Rajdeep Ranawat’s collection married influences from the Mughal era with the craftsmanship of Kutch and Rajasthan. A medley of his signature bold colours and prints, the silhouettes were a modern take on traditional classics.
Bohemian and Kashmiri prints mixed together with ikat and finished off with a contemporary feel—that’s what Ridhi Mehra’s collection ‘An Ode to Heirlooms’ was all about. Kashmiri embroidery graced the surface of jackets and peplum blouses and saris, jumpsuits, shararas and anarkalis in Chanderi, organza and satin silk; perfect for the modern-day bridesmaids.
ROHIT GANDHI + RAHUL KHANNA
‘Interstellar’ by Rohit Gandhi and Rahul Khanna was all about luxe fabrics like satins, silks, tulles and organza draped into flowing silhouettes with delicate embellishments using crystals and sequins and fringe added depth and character. The result? A collection that was dreamy, glamorous and statement-making.
SAAKSHA & KINNI
The colours, fabrics, prints and crafts of Gujarat and Rajasthan inspired the label’s ‘Arcus’ collection. The designs were playful, bold and travel-ready. Purples, greens and pinks came together in the duo’s signature micro-pleating, free-flowing silhouettes and pantsuits for pool-friendly looks.
SVA by SONAM AND PARAS MODI
‘Rani SVA’ was designed keeping the millennial woman in mind who is a maharani in her own right. The collection featured silhouettes with hand embroidery, luxe textures, metallic surfaces interwoven into geometric textiles; all making a bold statement.
Shop Lakmé Fashion Week W/F 2019 looks fresh off-the-runway on aashniandco.com.