June 27, 2013

Generation next India

During my term of teaching for one of the Fashion Institutes in Mumbai, India, which was two years back, I was given the responsibility of becoming a mentor for the Annual Fashion show of the aspiring designers. Being a mentor was my very first attempt as well and that too for the young talents who were so much of enthusiasm and curiosity. The theme given to the group was "Generation Next in India". Students had just completed a year in the institute and this was their first opportunity for showcasing their talent. Each of them had a completely different view for their theme garment. However, based on their final theme garments, I came up with subsequent review. Though it was two years back, I find the inspiration of each of them for the given theme was so unique. Hence, thought of sharing.

In the past few decades, we see an obvious shift from the popular, opulent and often over the top style of yesteryear patriarchs towards a more modern and minimalist approach in fashion garments. However, the garments of “Generation next India” will flaunt the refreshingly buoyant and effervescent styles to inspire the youth of tomorrow more towards setting trends rather than just following them.

The garments fashioned under this theme focus precisely on the three “I”s i.e. inspiration, innovation and invention. The designs, on one hand, are inspired from some of the distinctive elements of the Indian nature i.e. radiant flowers and ocean waves. On the other side, these designers have attempted to pay a tribute to one of the traditional modes of Indian transportation i.e. bullock carts, which even today are considered as one of the best modes of transportation, both economically as well as ecologically. Further, these young designers have also primed their garments based on peculiar shape of a musical instrument, hand-held fan shapes and lastly on some of the characteristics of Indian adornments i.e. jewelry.

Moreover, a very obvious or to be precise one of the appealing element of Indian fashion, which even these budding designers were not able to resist themselves from, were the “colors”. Hence, they have incorporated grouping of different colors in their styles.

 

To begin with, the wheels of bullock cart are included in the style with amalgamation of vibrant colors. The garment is styled keeping the cart wheel shape and basic drape in view. As mentioned prior, this design is styled to spotlight that even though India has advanced technology and infrastructure that provides speedy and most convenient transport facilities, we must promote transportation which is Eco-friendly where ever feasible. Bullock cart is one such environmentally friendly transport that suffices this need of gen-next India. Fabrics used are silk, glass tissue and resins. (Designed by Ms. Ruchi. Agarwal).




The next two styles are based on the individualistic elements of nature in India.
 
The spilling and rolling ocean waves are integrated in this design which in a way expresses the attitude that the next generation in India should built within them while living their life. The strong offshore winds push and drag the plunging ocean waves towards the ocean bottoms with great force. However, it is the waves that somehow are successful in reaching or touching the shores despite of these hindrances. Similar to these waves, the youth of tomorrow should be geared up to face the turmoil of life no matter what difficulties come their way. Single color is used as more emphasis is given on the constructive shapes of the garment depicting the waves. Fabric used is heat set satin. (Designed by Ms.Sumi. Sadh)

It is said that “Radiance” characterizes total emission or reflection. It also indicates the expression of light which when applied, takes one from darkness towards brightness. Hence, the next style was illustrated keeping in view the vivaciousness, warmth and sparkling temperamental qualities that a gen-next youth should enhance within them, which are similar to the characteristics of radiance, for living life to the fullest. Tints and shades of a single color are used giving prominence on the theme radiance. Fabrics used are Lycra with heat-set embossed designs all over and satins. (Designed by Ms.Shloka. Sachdev)


Further, this so called "country of snake charmers and magicians" possess a great civilization. Be it the people, lifestyle or the mystical charm- India has always amazed the world with her uniqueness. Colors of India in a way highlight various aspects and achievements of India and its people which will continue in the coming decades. Moreover, these colors when mixed with one another give dawn to new colors expressing the positive difference one can bring in one’s life, if worked with the sense of togetherness. The style is designed as a mark of respect to “Our” colorful India and so combinations and blending of bright colors are included. Fabrics used are PVC Lycra and Chinese chiffon with laser prints all over. (Designed by Ms.Shloka. Sachdev)


A hand-held fan is an implement used to induce airflow for the purpose of cooling or refreshing oneself. These fans are also convenient to carry around, and the folding kind in particular is compact to carry almost anywhere. These handy fans not only create a style statement in itself but also in its own minute way contribute to save electricity that is utilized on a large scale. Combination of two-colors are used, as more emphasis is given on the constructive shape of the garment which depicts the fan. Fabrics used are organza and satins.
(Designed by Ms.Jyoti. Soni)

One of the everlasting elements of the Indian history is its music. Hence, the next garment is primed based on one of the peculiar shape of a seldom used musical instrument i.e. saxophone thereby attempting to pay a small tribute to Indian music as a whole. Also, an attempt of permutation – combination of colors is experimented to enhance the shape and style of the outfit. Fabrics used are velvets and satins.
(Designed by Ms.Jyoti. Soni)

From time, immemorial women have been embellishing themselves with jewellery. Indian jewellery comprises mainly of platinum, diamond, emeralds and rubies, gold and silver. In the ancient times, jewellery was deemed as a status symbol. High profile people like the kings and rulers used to adorn themselves with precious jewellery. The status accorded to jewellery in the ancient times has remained totally unchanged even in the modern times. However, today this valued jewellery is considered more as a must-wear for women than men, especially on special occasions like festivals and wedding. The next style in particular is designed for those gen-next men who aspire to break this norm. The basic three-fourths are combined with a coat that is styled with amalgamation of gold and silver colors with multicolor crystal bead embellishments over it. Fabrics used are artificial synthetic brocades and khadi-look denims. 
(Designed by Ms. Isha Savla & Ms. Shloka Sachdev)

June 21, 2013

Hope to Sustain the desire of getting inspired

Today for me, the vicinity of textile, clothing and fashion embraces of infinite diversity of colors, fabrics, yarns, fibers, prints, embroideries, dyeing, patterns, sketches, designs, textures, shades, motifs and many more of such requisites. However, today when I look back more than a decade, I realize that it was such an alien world for me. At that time, I feel my thinking was so superficial based on my little exposure to this enormous field which at that time was mainly through media, newspapers, magazines and of course books. My area for design inspirations was so limited then. Perhaps, this was how it was meant to start for me.

These days the spectrum of inspiration for designs seems to be gigantic. It is said that due to globalization, the world has come closer as there is a lot of interchange of world views, products, ideas, and other aspects of various cultures across the globe.

I still remember those days when we used to make garments for our college stitching assignments. Our teacher used to give us complete instructions regarding the garment to be stitched which included what type of fabric, embroidery threads to be used, if any, etc. Barely few of the over enthusiastic in my batch used to do an additional reference before making that garment. However, I feel the underlying truth of most of us was that whatever creativity was delivered by us to make that garment was majorly influenced by the 'marks' allotted to that garment and not to forget the deadline of submission. By saying this, I am not against following the submission deadlines and marks oriented assignments. My intention is to just express the journey of my design inspirations over almost a decade or more.

Although, I do feel today that I could have performed much better than what I actually did, provided I had the immense exposure that we have these days. But then does too much familiarity about any subject take us away from its actual basics???? May be sometimes and hopefully for something better. For instance, in the current world of advanced technology, where sharing the inspirations is possible with just of click of the button, I hope the beauty and uniqueness of that inspiration is not killed brutally.

Nevertheless, apart from print media, web world and various reference books, as I got more exposed to this everlasting creative field, I realized that there are countless inspirations existing in my immediate surroundings. Today I might get inspired from individuals who just walk past across me or complete strangers with whom I interact to get some information or just by observing people of different age groups. Today my motivation to create new designs can be from what's happening in the present day world i.e. politics, sports, environment, any historic sculptures, some unusual shape of rock or even from the sprouted beans which I soak for the next day meal. By saying this what I mean is now I can easily expand or contract my vision of design inspirations depending on my requirements.

When I start thinking so much about 'my' ideas of inspiration all of a sudden I realize that there are so many established and aspiring talented individuals these days in the world who must be working unlike me on their own unique design inspirations. In addition, there is also surfacing of globalization and unlimited internet access which is constantly aiming towards customer satisfaction. So does this mean that my design inspirations might not sustain in this competitive world??? No, that's not true. I had read somewhere that "Funny thing about Sustainability is that you have to sustain it". This means that if I wish to continue exploring my creative side for the rest of my life, then I have to constantly be in search of inspirations for my designs. "Focus should be primarily on getting inspired continuously" and then be a part of the rat race in this competitive world to earn my living.

Fact is that there is not much difference in keeping up to the deadlines of submissions in college assignments and earning for your bread and butter in this materialistic world. I really hope though in today's fear sly competitive world where everyone is striving for sustainability, I should never feel discontinued from getting inspired...

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