As the festivities start on a sombre note this year, thanks to the pandemic, most families look forward to celebrating festivals with low-key indoor ceremonies or among small social gatherings.
With fear of the coronavirus still looming large over the nation, this would also be a time to show responsible fashion aesthetics among loved ones, keeping the festive wear to remain simplistic and functional. Given the times and mood of the country, one could even choose to subtly participate in the ‘vocal for local’ initiative. And why not make the pandemic festive look a beautiful way to support slow fashion with a minimalistic way of life?
Even so, the festive look doesn’t have to mean that you can’t stand out in your crowd. At least, that’s what fashion designer Jyoti Dhawan of the label Andaaz tells us. She shares tips on how to stand out in gorgeous Indian fabrics and by creating effortless Indian looks that are just right for this festive season.
Ditch the complicated silhouettes and opt for classic Indian wears, such as plain kurtas paired with easy flowing pants, handwoven sari with an interesting blouse or cotton skirt/lehenga with designer crop tops and dupattas.
Suggesting easy clothing that is fuss-free and yet traditional, designer Jyoti shares pointers on sustainability. “Think of well-coordinated kurta sets or a sari, which always puts one in the festive spirit,” she says. “One must also invest in festive pieces that are classics and would last not only this season but also for seasons to come.”
Then, the designer gives a pointer on the colours for the season. “Some wonderful hues of scarlet, fuchsia and saffron will always remain in vogue for festive seasons,” she adds. “But you can even break the vibrant look by adding some classic shades of ivory, beige and almond to your festive attire.”
A lot of ideas can be reinvented from your existing wardrobe, says Jyoti, even as you invest in some key pieces to add novelty.
As per the designer, a new festive look can be created by mixing up minimal yet intricate ways of living for the modern woman with design and craftsmanship that play up the subtle sophistication. With clothes made with utmost attention to fit, fabric and detail, one can recreate contemporary looks, recommends Jyoti.
“As a DIY festive wear especially this year when investing in clothing has become more mindful and planned, I would even suggest ‘shopping’ from your own wardrobe,” says Jyoti. “So, if you purchase a classic vibrant dupatta, look in your wardrobe and pull out some classics to pair it with. Similarly, invest in a statement blouse to pair with all your classic Banarasi or Kanjeevaram saris.”
The designer also points to a must-have accessory this festive season — a small traditional ‘potli’ bag that holds everything from your mask and sanitiser to all the festive essentials.
Local is love
There is nothing more beautiful than an original handmade garment, be it a traditional craft on the fabric or hand-spun textile. In fact, one could even argue that the most unique style statement is a one-of-kind ensemble made by a weaver.
This year has brought back into focus the need for mindful designs, slow fashion and a sustainable lifestyle. And keeping in mind the environment of subtlety we currently live in, the designer suggests, hand-spun and hand woven Indian textiles as the best way to make an impact.
Even Jyoti began the year exploring craft forms of block printing and Madhubani art on handwoven chanderi. Additionally, in her festive collection, they introduced fine handwoven tissue and handwoven chanderi, while exploring embroidery techniques such as dabka, zardozi and chikankari.
While concluding about the look for the festivities ahead, Jyoti points out, “Opt for a classic silk sari or a kurta with tie-and-dye details and fine embellished details at the hemlines. Even pretty textures in the garment can accentuate the festive vibe with a touch of elegance.”