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Design Board for the Autumn Bride

By Sanhati Banerjee

Flashes of fashion, montages of dresses flashing under the wishy-washy glow of the lamp of your dresser top. Dreams of designs playing havoc with your imagination as you are struggling to get a good night’s sleep? Well, you might just be the autumn bride who wants to create the perfect array of ensembles out of the hazy patches of fabrics and snippety snatches of cuts! Here’s some light to help you in prepping up for the big season!

Destination or no destination, for that Indian wedding, which is bent on channeling chic aesthetics as its theme, the bride will of all things, want to play with tradition. But cutting off the roots of traditional design patterns and craftsmanship will only mean making it lose out on the vibrancy and glamour of the traditional crafts. What appeals to most contemporary brides is tradition fused with smart finishing touches, applications of 3D embroideries, bling combined with monotones, drapes that look neat and edgy and cultural inspirations from all over the world! Not easy to get, but Indian couture designers have been combining traditional richness, diverse schools of designs and arts, modern washed out looks and edgy applications of bling in their collections to offer a fine blend to brides for a decade now. Here’s more on that and how it is all coming together this season.




For the Global Indian Bride

A lot of fusion work is being done in bridal couture and that’s not news! It has been here for a long, long, time now. But what strikes as mindboggling are the kinds of influences designers are drawing upon to work out fusion designs in their creations. It’s not about working with Rajasthani and Lucknawi schools of embroideries and infusing them with Odisha schools of scroll paintings or temple motifs from Karnataka; the local and the global are interacting and intermingling in a never-seen-before manner. For instance, if romance is the theme of design and backdrop of the look, the influences are as varied as French lace, Parsi embroidery and Indian paisley motifs with flower cutwork. For the brides of today, these are the exciting times when fusion-istic couture has become the flavour of both destination weddings as well as weddings inspired by theme occasions, a global Indian flair and a craft-in-couture story that knows no boundaries. In sync with this, the ‘World Bride’ collection from renowned designer Monisha Jaising, who is popularly known as the “Inventor of the Kurti”, is for the global Indian bride or the globe-trotting brides of India. “World Bride” for the designer “is a bride who is bold, modern and not bound by the usual norms of wedding attire, but at the same time, feels luxurious in couture, which has a new perspective all together that includes edge and luxury at the same time.” “Globe-trotting brides are the key essence and my muse for designing this collection” adds the designer. The collection showcases an interesting amalgam of both Rajasthani and French (royal) lifestyles and architectural patterns. The major USP of the collection is definitely the mood “and the lifestyle of the high-borne, which we have tried to capture from two completely different cultures and lifestyles and merged them into one. The same is reflected through intricate 3D embroidery, digital printing and other special techniques, with the help of the genius of Indian craftsmanship and finest textiles” explains Monisha Jaising. The collection caters to the free-spirited, edgy and new-age bride and her entourage.The collection revolves around draped sarees, concept lehengas, embellished leggings, crop kurtis and evening gowns sculpted according to the Indian body type. Designer-duo Kailash & Deepika offers contemporary fusion wear ensembles like lehenga-sarees, saree-gowns and a variety of pre-stitched ready-to-wear bridal creations for pre-weddding and wedding ceremonies.



Subtle Bling and Cool Shades

For the contemporary brides-to-be, while couture must have those Indian accents and what we understand by a ‘bridal’ look––ornate and heavy; it must also have elegance, toned down opulence and lightness in weight. That’s what makes it contemporary. Those crispy cool shades that are a combination of luxe with casual chic are ‘in’ even for an autumn wedding. From folk to vintage––embroideries and motifs can do the whole spectrum-walk but the final work will showcase something in the order of washed out bling. And, it also looks like tiny is the new large when it comes to patterns! Couture designer Surekha Jain who has recently unveiled her bridal collection has included a lot of Parsi gara embroidery that she has re-interpreted with metallic yarn embroidery (kasab) and with tiny sequins. This makes the entire ensemble contemporary. “The folk and vintage techniques of embroidery have been used on contemporary silhouettes for the modern bride. We have used ombred fabrics to give the vintage techniques a modern twist” says the designer. Talking about shades, the collection is a blend of subdued elegance and a whole lot of bright colours...pinks, oranges and reds. The gold and silver metallic yarns used in this collection are antique and not bright rendering a subdued bling!For the contemporary bride,“we have used loads of pinks, fuchsias and oranges...the new ‘it’ shade for the bridal lehenga for us is crème! It is highlighted with pinks and reds. For the pre wedding celebrations, besides lighter lehengas with fun mirror and thread work, we have done shararas with short kurtis, bandhni kurtis with ombred skirts and dupattas and all in our ‘fun’ signature silhouettes” says Surekha Jain.



Golden Shimmer and 3D Art

Infusing a golden dash of bling into your bridal couture always looks elegant and when it is further coordinated with shades of pink and red, it brings in elements of colour contrast into your bridal ensembles. Solid and bright shades contrasted in patterns of contemporary colour blocking bring in a very smart look to a traditionally done ensemble. Taking inspiration from the nuances of Persian and South Asian miniature art and architecture during the Mughal era, designer Suchana Parasrampuria evolves an eclectic mix of occasion wear ensembles in subtle hues, intricate textures and elegant embroideries in her collection ‘From the Mughal Era’. She has blended the vintage styles with a contemporary finish. Using fabrics like flowy chiffons, sheer, net, etc. the designer has indulged in dramatic Indian-contemporary silhouettes which include Anarkalis, light lehengas and sarees. Designer Suchana Parasrampuria is offering golden bling and 3D work across her bridal design board. “We try to create 3D effects by adding pearls, Swarovskis, crystals and shimmer to the work in a protruding manner” says the designer. Gold is her go-to bridal colour as she feels that this ethereal shade complements all Indian wear colours like red, ivory, pink and yellow well. Mughal paintings form the artistic core of this collection. If you are looking at flaunting Anarkalis, then this Mughal-inspired collection offers tons of them in gold, red, ivory, pink with a dash of gold in them. Modern and traditional fused into a fine diva’s dress is what you should wear for your wedding! Some dresses are heavy with the silver/zari work whereas some are the sarees which drape beautifully for an Indian bride.




Diva-esque Drapes

Drapes that are constructed and easy-to-wear are the signature drapes of the modern Indian bride. Whether worn like a skirt and an attached pallu giving the lehenga a saree-like look or whether it is a saree with the pleats and the pallu designed and stitched in place; or it is lehenga-like flared silhouette waist-down and the draped dupatta in the fashion of a side pallu or simply gown like silhouettes for the modern bridal sarees––those drapes that are more than the conventional are just perfect to reflect the contemporary side of couture.Designer-duo Kailash & Deepika presents a stunning array of bridal garments with jewel work showcasing zardozi embroidery and flower cutwork . Designer duo Sneh and Samta has launched their bridal collection using traditional kamdaani embroidery technique and experimental drapes.These drapes are all constructed and in the manner of pre-stitched ones to readymade ones––“these are pre-draped sarees and have been designed keeping in mind the body shape of the Indian woman.”Different embroidery techniques have been used for each style depending on the structure like zarodozi thread work, bead work etc. The bling is very subdued and has been used only as highlighting like in the form of jewel pallus. “The bejewelled pallus are basically an extension of the sarees and look wonderful besides being very easy to carry” says the designer.
There are lots of outfits for bridesmaids ranging from Anarkalis, sarees with jacket sets. They also do custom-made outfits for bridesmaids keeping in mind the bride’s ensemble. On a concluding note, only this can be said that you just need to look around to find the ‘you’ in the stream of couture floating around you, to get inspired and start acting! So, here’s to bride power.


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