From crystal embellishments to luxe fabrics, how to choose wisely this season
As the season of mists and a mellow winter settles over a city that is gearing up to party its way into the New Year, it is tempting to emulate the sparkling mood of the hour by dressing likewise. Festive dressing for many women at this time of the year is all about wearing clothes with a smattering of crystals, a bunch of glittering sequins, an assortment of shiny motifs or a bouquet of shimmering ribbons. The problem with this look is that it can look both dated and strange if it is not co-ordinated properly. It is therefore, always best to check out what’s hip and what’s not before heading out to buy any ensemble in a hurry. The most important trend this year is the shift of emphasis from surface ornamentation to the fabric itself. So, instead of looking for crystal-studded dresses or gem-laden saris or stone-embossed tops, look for beautiful fabrics. Enjoy the sheer luxury of fine silk, the clever craftsmanship of pure lace, the lustre of beautiful gold lamé or the caress of cool chiffon. Sophistication is the key to looking stylish, so you need to begin by searching for exquisite fabrics. The next step is to examine the structure of an outfit. A shapeless dress with a lot of twinkling motifs will do nothing for your overall look. Look for special design touches, like delicate criss-cross straps, tiny pleats, bodycon styles, high neck halters, mesh sleeves, ruched bodices, deep V cuts or floor-length drapes. However, if you hate fussy clothes, you could keep it simple by choosing a rich fabric in a primary colour and add touches like a cropped jacket spun out of gold thread or a pretty stole with multi-coloured sequins.
I caught up with designer Anu Nagappa to find out what she had created for the party season and if she had any tips for the fashionistas this year. Her label Anu and Susan is known for clothes that are skilfully crafted. “When you dress well, you will get treated well too,” she says, adding, “But don’t just go out and buy all kinds of expensive designer wear in order to look trendy. Always choose your outfits with care.” According to Nagappa, the safest option for the party season is black lace. “A sexy black lace dress that is well fitted is very fashionable this year. However, you need to pay attention to the quality of the lace too,” she adds. Fabrics should take centre stage now, says Nagappa, but she believes in the power and beauty of pure fabrics. “Whenever possible buy pure silks, cotton or linen,” she says. “If you are planning to wear Indian clothes, ghagra skirts teamed with off shoulder or brocade tops are trending now,” she points out. As colours go, Anu suggests that dark blue, black, bright red and dark green are the best options this year, besides black, white, gold, silver and metallic shades. Getting ready for the styles of the next year is important too, says Anu.
“The year 2017 is going to be all about the retro hippie and gypsy look,” she says. So, get ready to make a fashion statement by making a few wise investments and dazzling people with your own signature style. Happy holidays!
Asha Chowdary presents a column on what’s trending in the world of fashion