While fashion is all about looking towards the future and having a global approach, it’s equally important to stay in touch with one’s roots. And there’s no better place to start the search than our own backyard! So it is no surprise that ‘handloom and textile revival’ is the latest buzzword in Indian fashion. So much so that the recently concluded Lakme Fashion Week dedicated an entire day to it every season. From Wendell Rodricks and Tarun Tahiliani to Sabysachi and Abu-Sandeep, scores of designers have lent their stylish touch to this cause. Luxemi has always supported this return to tradition. So, this week, we’ve rounded some of the top designers who are consistently churning out the most noteworthy designs to support this ever-so-chic cause!
When Rahul Mishra became the first Indian designer to win the International Woolmark Prize (IWP) at Milan Fashion Week earlier this year, it wasn’t just a victory for Indian fashion but also for our textiles and weaves. The designer who is best known for his simple garments with complex craftsmanship has made a career (and a rather successful one at that) of promoting cotton handloom, traditional textiles and handmade artisanship.
When this designer du jour lends his magic touch to a garment, it’s sure to fly off the racks. And trust Sabyasachi to bring handlooms back in vogue. His ‘Save the Saree’ project tries to revive this dying industry of Bengal and Andhra Pradesh and provide longevity to traditional weaving practices.
Shruti Sancheti is another name oft associated with handloom revival and she always makes sure to give her creations a trendy twist. Kudos to her for focusing on wearability and interpreting these silhouettes in a modern context.
Hyderabad-based Gaurang Shah has carved a niche for himself with his consistent innovation of Jamdani weaves. “It is good to practice modernity but not at the cost of our heritage and tradition that has so much grace and authenticity,” he was quoted saying.
Acclaimed designer Anita Dongre (who’s had her own fashionable input at Luxemi) has a dedicated ‘Grassroots’ initiative that is all about environmental glam and creating wardrobe staples out of sustainable fabrics. One look at how chic Dia Mirza looks in one of these designs and we’re totally sold on it!
Veteran designer Krishna Mehta’s fuss-free yet supremely elegant Indian wear has always rested on the charm of handlooms to work their magic. From Bhagalpur to Pochampalli and from Manipur to Varanasi; Mehta uses the textiles of these regions in an easy chic context. Her latest collection saw her revive Maheshwari weaves for a summer-friendly look.
Ekaya, founded by father-daughter duo Bharat and Palak Shah, is all about bringing the best of Benaras to Delhi. They employ over 10,000 weavers and craftsmen to create their exciting clothing range using Tussar silks, crepes, khadi, chikankari, vibrant pop-colored tanchois and rich Banarasi brocade.
Here is yet another contemporary brand that is all about making Indian handwoven textiles and traditional techniques trendy. We heart their timeless designs and vibrant use of colors.
Which of these designers would you rather wear? Tell us in the comment box below!
Praachi Raniwala for Luxemi