Where the rich are investing 2015

Desi drama, global appeal

King of kitsch Manish Arora wows the world with his latest offering 

He is known for his quirky interpretations on the runway, and is undoubtedly the king of kitsch — designer Manish Arora likes to keep his intrinsic ideas desi, but the execution is always a mix of global influences.

The globetrotting, Paris-based designer’s bridal and couture collections have always appealed to unconventional women who dare to dream beyond the classics. Manish, who worked as the creative director of French fashion house Paco Rabanne for a year in 2011, collaborated with various lifestyle labels and designed limited-edition collections for fashion lovers across the world in a very short span of time.

He started with a quirky Fish Fry collection of Reebok, and also teamed up with cosmetic brand MAC to do a signature line of products. Later, he did a colourful line of watches for Swatch and produces vibrant, chunky baubles for Jaipur-based jewellery brand Amrapali. The eclectic colours and patterns are the most coveted style of this designer, who has now created a niche with his multicoloured bridal wear for modern brides.

Keeping in sync with his signature style, his latest couture collection is also a blast of bright and bold colours that complement the Indian colour palette. He says, “I have travelled around the globe to Istanbul, China, Africa, Eastern Europe, Thailand, Bali, besides India, and these places serve as eight distinct inspirations for this collection. Each story seamlessly fuses a key feature of the location with Indian elements to stay relevant to the bridal market, along with unique design treatments, intricate 3D embroideries, and detailing.”

Arora says that it took him four months to create 25 ensembles for this collection, and adds,“Silk dupion, silk crêpes, lamé, and silk georgettes are the most dominant fabrics featured in the collection. I’ve stuck to basic silhouettes, but incorporated techniques like laser-cut gold, hand-embroidered faux leather, 3D hand embroideries in silk thread using shells and colourful beads, and laser-cut vinyls.”

And with the bridal season in full swing, Arora gives his personal take on what makes for ideal bridalwear for modern brides, and says that on her big day, the bride must keep it light so that she can dance and enjoy her wedding without being weighed down by her clothes. He says, “Blouses should be lightweight and should complement a heavy-looking skirt or lehenga, which is actually created with light embroidery techniques to give the illusion of a rich, glorious outfit, and simultaneously allow the bride to be comfortable and look beautiful on her big day.”