London Fashion Week is the grand extravaganza that showcases the best and the trendiest in the fashion circles every year. This year marked a special beginning for Indian fashion, with the first-of-its-kind ‘India Day’ celebration by Indian High Commission at the London Fashion Week. The grand event was held in Victoria House on February 15 and highlighted the elegance and grandeur of the quintessential Indian saree.
‘India Day’ was a tribute to the design, talent and textiles of the country that is so well known for its creative, cultural and traditional splendour. It was a fashion show that presented a remarkable line of attire created by the budding designers and artists from India’s Inter National Institute of Fashion Design (INIFD). The limelight at the event was on the traditional Indian sarees from various parts of India.
Models presented sheer elegance on the ramp with as many as seventeen different varieties of sarees from across the country. The range was breathtaking, from Kashmiri and Phulkari from the North, to Kantha and Baluchari from West Bengal, Paithni from Maharashtra, Bandhni from Rajasthan, Ghatchola from Gujarat, Banarasi from Varanasi, Kasavu from Kerala and Kanjivaram from Tamil Nadu, all of which made a feast for the eyes. Madhya Pradesh’s Chanderi, Assam’s ethnic Mekhela Chadar, Odisha’s Sambalpuri and Lucknow’s Chikankari were some of the other exceptional varieties on show.
Shabnam Harjai, Sandya Miriyala, Ayushi Jain, Pearl Lobo, Tanishaa Parakh, Soutrav Marndi, Suchitra Rani Sahoo amd Darshna Gothi were some of the acclaimed designers who participated in the event. The guest list was equally impressive, with the likes of Mrs Ruchi Ghanashyam, the Indian High Commissioner to the UK, Lord Tariq Ahmad, UK Foreign Office minister, Mark Regev, Israeli ambassador to the UK, and Saida Muna Tasneem, Bangladeshi High Commissioner to the UK. Mrs Ruchi Ghanashyam had generous words of praise for the wonderful craftspeople and weavers of India who create the most amazing and rich variety in sarees.
Another highlight of the event was a video message by Mrs Smriti Irani, the Union minister of textiles, who addressed saree as the pride of the country rather than just being a piece of clothing.