Gone are the days when Indian outfits were considered as an exclusive ethnic treat for the globetrotting foreigners.
Indian fashion is ruling the high end international runways of Paris and New York. Many Indian fashion designers both home-grown as well as groomed abroad have carved a niche for their outstanding designs on a global stage.
International celebrities wearing have elevated Indian fashion yet further.
Manish Arora is the most famous Indian name on the ramps of Paris. He made his debut in Paris through Paris Fashion Week 2007. Since then there has been no looking back as he has become known for his psychedelic creations. Arora who has formerly headed Paco Rabanne label, knows how to inspire with his designs. His ‘Twin Peaks Meet Haribo’, the latest autumn winter collection displayed at Paris had a distinct Wild West American flavour blended with his quintessential kitschy style. Manish Arora never fails to impress the International fashion connoisseurs. His recent award of Legion D’honneur (a French knighthood) affirms the love that he receives on the Paris runways. Manish Arora’s creations have been worn by International celebrities like Nicki Minaj, Katy Perry and Lady Gaga.
Anamika Khanna debuted on the Paris Fashion Week runway with Manish Arora in 2007 to become the first Indian female designer at the esteemed International fashion show. Her show merged western silhouettes with ethnic jadau jewellery to make a scintillating presentation at Paris. Her eponymous label Ana-Mika caters to a western clientele and she is known for her Indian aesthetics presented with a modern styling approach. Whether Indian or International, the designer knows to weave effeminate charm into her creations.
Rahul Mishra is another Indian fashion designer, who is getting rave reviews for his presentations at Paris Fashion Week. The designer’s Spring / Summer 2015 collection ‘The Ferryman’s Tale’ used Merino wool to unravel his creativity. The intricate embroidery and western silhouettes aimed to bridge the gap between the craftsmen from the East and the buyers from the West. The International Woolmark award has reinforced the excellence of Mishra’s designs.
The interesting cuts of Gauri & Nainika gowns are being increasingly spotted on the International red carpets like the Academy Awards. Mumbai based designer duo Shane and Falguni Peacock have dressed up Hollywood celebrities like Fergie and Demi Lovato. The veteran Indian fashion designers of India like Abu Jani-Sandeep Khosla, Ritu Kumar and Suneet Verma are already popular choices in Los Angeles.
Bibhu Mohapatra, who was born in Rourkela, Odisha, has taken the American fashion hub, New York City, by storm with his creations. Bibhu Mohapatra displays his creations regularly at the New York Fashion Week. His collections are sold by Bergdorf Goodman, Neiman Markus, SAKS and Nordstorm in America. The fashion designer employs the craftsmen from his native state of Odisha to churn international designs. American First Lady Michelle Obama displayed Bibhu Mohapatra’s creation during her India visit. The First Lady also favours creations by another American-Indian designer, Naeem Khan, who is a well known name on the American fashion scene. Jennifer Lopez is another popular figure who has worn Naeem Khan's creation on numerous occasions.
Diane Lane in Naeem Khan Creation
Not only Indian fashion designers but famed International designers are also incorporating Indian fashion aesthetics in their creations. Hermes Spring Summer 2008, Alexander McQueen Fall 2008 and Chanel Bombay-Paris Collection 2012-13, showed a distinct Indian fervour. Marchesa Spring Summer 2013 exhibited vibrant gowns, saree gowns and Indian inspired tunics and pants with embellishments. Vera Wang Spring 2013 also borrowed Indian inspirations in her minimalistic silhouettes. Even Yves Saint Laurent, Armani, Valentino and Louis Vuitton have not escaped the magic of Indian fashion. The International designers have realised the trick of bringing the magnificence of Indian designs in their sublime attires in a beautiful way.
The West no longer sees Indian designs as un-wearable thanks to the innovative attitude of the Indian fashion designers. From Indian villages to the International runways, Indian designs are making a splendid journey.
India is a land that offers immense fashion potential with its exquisite crafts and varied textiles. Also India is not only the land of Maharajahs but also a land of more than a billion people who display distinguished dressing sensibilities. The potential is being voraciously tapped in the last few years and it has resulted in a surge of Indian designs on a global stage. The world is embracing Indian fashion like never before. It will not be long before the line between contemporary Indian fashion and International fashion gets blurred.
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