FESTIVE & OCCASION WEAR: A REPORT BY THE FASHION FORECASTER
DISSOLVING GENDER LINES WITH FASHION
The Fashion Forecaster unveils three trends that will influence the upcoming festive & occasion season — Ungendered, Conscious and Affordable. A detailed report.
Fashion is about something that comes from within you, expressing your identity, showing someone who you are through your clothing choices and using your clothes to tell someone something about you. However with the current upsurge of identity politics in gender, Indian fashion industry is going through a gender revolution, breaking notions of stereotypes and creating a new culture of “genderless” clothing options.
India did not have gender differentiation in its tradition of garment construction. History of Indian menswear is rife with makeup, swishing angarakhas, anarkalis, lungis and dupattas, and heavy jewellery alongwith color and fabric choices similar to those used for traditional costumes for women.
The British Raj brought the societal conditioning for creating gender specific costumes which was prevalent in Europe. This heavily influenced the notion of clothing in India over the subsequent decades, further aided by the fast fashion clothing culture. However designers are increasingly using fashion as a tool to bring back our lost history of gender dissolution.
This season of occasion wear is witnessing a pronounced effect of blurred lines in gender definitive garments and societal definitions of clothing categories. The play of identity is highlighted in the comforting yet dramatic array of color options as well as print designs.
Conversations about sex, opening up and even the LGBTQ community finding representation in the media is talking about a cross cultural exchange of ideas. This exchange is shown by the well coordinated prints stories seen in ensemble by Urvashi Kaur and and Nakita Singh. Abstraction is playing a major role in expression of ideas and hence simplistic floral forms or non defined motifs are taking the centrestage.
In a matriarchal set-up with parents adopting non-normative gender roles with ease, this concept of gender reflects fluidity. Being called conscious millenials, role of gender has seeped far into our doctrine of society. It has found its expression in the form of vintage color options that are more sophisticated in language and perception. An unprovoked nostalgia is seen to be present throughout all the designs and patterns spotted during the upcoming season. Reminiscence, non evocative yet effective use of tints highlighted in fashion collections are clearly demarcating a dual color dominance over the market. Designs are dominated by monochromatic tones or two hues paired together reflecting gender binary notions and tonals or gradients, suggesting the broken stereotypes of gender binary politics. Juxtaposition of two tones heighten a sense of contrast, and creates a mood that is fantastical and otherworldly creating a cross generational palette. Subliminal presence of midtones is highly impactful towards setting trends this season adaptive to all genders throughout.
from left to right Shahab ud Din Mohammad Khurram, Shah Jahan | “Woman with a Flower’, 17th century Mughal miniature, Women in Art Series, Museum of Fine Art, Boston | Ranvir Singh in a still from the film Bajirao Mastani | ‘Last Dance of the Courtesan’, Tarun Tahiliani’s India Couture Week 2016 | Rohit Bal, Gulbagh 2014
1 1. Urvashi Kaur | LFW Winter/ Festive 2018 || 2. Rahul Mishra | ICW 2018 || 3. 1. Antar Agni | LFW Winter/ Festive 2018, || 4 & 5. Rajesh Pratap Singh | LFW Winter/ Festive 2018 || 6. Siddesh Chauhan | LFW Winter/ Festive 2018