Fashion designer Tarun Tahiliani's finale show at the India Bridal Fashion Week (IBFW), which saw model-actress Lisa Haydon walk the ramp thrice, focused on "lightness" that was still laden with the weight of history, courtesy ornate embroidery and intricate threadwork.
After a wait of almost two hours, the capital's fashion coterie and other guests were ushered in the main show area Sunday night. The set-up of the ramp was intriguing - a white skeleton of what looked like a palace or mansion. Explaining the concept, Tahiliani said, "It was the skeleton of a mansion. (We wanted to convey that the mansion is there) as a dream, as a vision, but stripped of its heaviness. It was a symbolic metaphor that you must leave the heaviness of the past behind and move forward into the contemporary world."
That it was - considering his three-tier line, the Gold Collection, the Enchanted Forest and the Man of The Hour.
The Gold Collection boasts of outfits, mostly saris in Grecian drapes in liquid gold. The silhoutte of the sari was a fusion of Greek and Indian sensibilities. They had intricate details of hand-embroiders 3D flower artwork embellished with Swarovski elements, yet the line was quite understated. The second line was bathed in a colour pallete of pinks, ivory, beige and red. Flowing and layered garments formed the focus here, with subdued bling.
As part of Man of the Hour, Tahiliani showcased an interesting blend of contemporary wear for the grooms-to-be. He mad draped dhotis out of kanjeevaram saris and intricate sherwanis, kurta and bandhgalas. There were also sherwanis in velvet with jewel embroidered necklines and cuffs. The veteran designer said: "The concept of the show was all about draping and Indian embroideries, but I wanted to work with lightness. So everything has volume, but it is all very light. "Everybody shouts that I use very light colours, but I feel when you're wearing rubies and emeralds, then I think if you wear shocking pink, it just gets too much. So I think there should be lightness and sophistication and something which is easy on the eyes, and which is contemporary (in your wedding wear)."
The showstopper, Lisa Haydon, vouched for the lightness of her final ensemble despite the fact that it looked heavy. "I would only want to wear something as elegant and beautiful as this on my wedding. And while Tarun keeps saying 'lightness', I feel the whole collection has not compromised on the work, but it is really light," she said of her outfit, which looked heavily embellished.
Clothes apart, the audience was treated to a visual delight of a fluid performance by performers from the Attakalari Centre for Movement Arts. The performers were fluid and set the mood for the show, but many were left wondering if there was a story to it, as they kept returning to the stage.
But Tahiliani told IANS: "The story (in my presentation) is always my clothes"Just as the skeleton of a mansion, the performance was symbolic too. It was a blend of rituals and ceremonies that constitute Indian marriage tradition. "The dancers were symbolic of the lightness and fluidity of the drapes. It's a new philosphy of our design studio.