De­signs on you

Meet the fash­ion gu­rus who are chang­ing the way the city dresses

India Today - - SIMPLY CHENNAI - BY SARANYA CHAKRA­PANI Sid­dharth Shashankan, 32

Ex­per­i­ment and evolve

Sid­dharth Shashankan’s tryst with fash­ion hap­pened by chance. He wanted to be an au­to­mo­bile de­signer, but fate had dif­fer­ent plans for him and fash­ion slipped in as a last minute de­ci­sion. To­day, he swears that his choice couldn’t have been bet­ter. “I am driven by the idea of pro­duc­ing qual­ity fash­ion. My big­gest achieve­ment has been in mak­ing peo­ple ac­knowl­edge that good qual­ity takes the look and feel of the out­fit to an all new level, and is hence sacro­sanct,” he says.

A grad­u­ate of the Raf­fles De­sign In­sti­tute, Sin­ga­pore, with a de­gree in Fash­ion De­sign from Northum­bria Univer­sity, UK, Sid­dharth’s love for classics and his ex­plo­ration of the con­tem­po­rary, can be seen in his two lines – Han­gar and Clipse. While Han­gar of­fers tra­di­tional and con­tem­po­rary ensem­bles for men and women, Clipse of­fers ready- towear ensem­bles for women.

While Chen­nai as a mar­ket re­mains hes­i­tant to the more rev­o­lu­tion­ary fash­ion ideas, Sid­dharth be­lieves there are still those who wouldn’t mind ex­per­i­ment­ing. “The mar­ket is open­ing up to new ideas and peo­ple are will­ing to ex­per­i­ment, giv­ing Chen­nai de­sign­ers more creative scope. The chal­lenge in Chen­nai how­ever, is that a large pop­u­la­tion is still tra­di­tional when it comes to dress­ing. In my ex­pe­ri­ence, I think we as a city like to ex­per­i­ment with the mod­ern while re­tain­ing the tra­di­tional cul­tural iden­tity.

Sid­dharth be­lieves his own straight­for­ward ap­proach to life re­flects largely in his de­signs, along with his love for the classics. “Nude pumps are al­ways a safe bet when you are con­fused about what to wear with a par­tic­u­lar out­fit. Thicker waist belts will help you even out pro­por­tions,” he says.

“Au­drey Hep­burn’s clas­sic style is age­less and this is what my de­signs are about. Tech­nol­ogy too has in­flu­enced my work, even though this in­flu­ence trans­lates in my de­signs in a sub­tle man­ner.”

His lat­est col­lec­tion has been cre­ated for a show in Sin­ga­pore, In­dia Within, the funds of which will be go­ing to a char­i­ta­ble trust. The idea and in­spi­ra­tion be­hind the col­lec­tion is, ‘ The world needs a su­per hero’. He has in­cor­po­rated shades of midnight blue, black, yel­low and red or­ange and olive green on toby, silk, ge­or­gettes and net. IN­SPI­RA­TION The 1960s psychedelia, hip­pies, and the Haight- Ash­bury, neigh­bor­hood of San Fran­cisco, Cal­i­for­nia TIP Al­ways look at the innner seams of a gar­ment to see if it is well made. The qual­ity of the lin­ing and the fin­ishes can tell you if the gar­ment has been made with care. TREND WATCH Shim­mer, mis­matched and con­trast­ing ele­ments. STORE Han­gar Atelier, GC, Block- 1, Mag­no­lia Park, No. 2, Five Fur­long Road, Guindy TEL 917655 5566

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