Horror struck: Sona’s worst outfit till date?

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Why, Sonakshi Sinha, why? Just when we thought that you’ve given your wardrobe a make over or hired a sensible stylist, you spring an ugly one on us! Leather-y blouse with a distinct Spandex-ish sheen to it that threatens to slide off, exposing more of a well nourished shoulder — how could you not know that this deady sari-blouse combo is anything but flattering? Add to it the WWF Championship gold belt on the waist and it’s a recipe for disaster! As if the harsh monsoons this season is not inflicting enough pain on us already… 😦

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Dawn of the new age bride: Nari tells us what made him want to design for the Indian bride

Narendra Kumar Ahmed bridal

When designer Narendra Kumar Ahmed aka Nari announced his bridal line, it raised a quite a few eyebrows. Besides being a new territory for him, bridal designs were not something Nari’s design aesthetics were associated with. He is more known for lending luxury stitches to boring work wear clothes and stylised and structured women’s and men’s wear. But all that changed when the master designer attended an after-after party at 6 am at a friend’s house. He heard a lady play the piano with such intensity that it shook him up and he knew right then that he was ready to create a bridal line. True story! Read on…

Tell us, was a bridal line always on the agenda?

Nari: It was on the cards for a while but I felt that I couldn’t find the right idea to translate into a line. I was clear that if I get into the bridal segment, the product has to be different from what already exists in the Indian market. There are 10,000 designers already doing it, and I didn’t want to be just another one to join the bandwagon.

Nari all the way

So, what changed?

Nari: The lady playing the piano at an after party. I’ve never heard the piano being played with such intensity. Honestly, it was not the sound or the music that moved me but the intensity that stirred something in me to kick off a bridal line. It really got me going. She was playing Rachmaninoff – different, dark music. Rachmaninoff was a romanticist but it was his version of dark romance that lured me to do a bridal collection.

Dark romance for the Indian bride…

Nari: That’s the thing. If you say dark romance, no one will buy the outfits in India. So we looked at the musicians life and the time period that he lived in. We took elements from his era. That’s how we mixed the idea of Swan Lake and Rachmaninoff and came up with outfits for the new age Indian bride.

What do you mean by ‘new age’ Indian bride?

Nari: Yep. The new age Indian bride doesn’t want to stand pretty in a ghaghra that weighs 100 kilos while the guests dance and have the time of their life. She wants to be able to participate in the celebrations. It is that mindset that the collection will appeal to. The new age bride is also a woman who is an avid traveller, been to destination weddings herself and has seen the world, but still wants to connect with her roots on her big day.

Tell us more about your inspirations behind the line. What makes it so special?

Nari: The line blends classic West and modern India. It is for a woman who is strong yet fragile in many ways. I’ve drawn inspiration from ballerinas in Swan Lake who look so fragile but if you notice closely they have to be very strong to portray that very fragility. I’ve been watching a lot of films based on ballerinas in the fast few months and their movements require a great deal of strength, both mental and physical. Yet their actions on stage make us feel like they are more delicate than a butterfly. It is this paradox that is the collection.

The Nari groom

Describe the collection. What has the response been like?

Nari: I’ve used a lot of organza to portray the fragility of the garment and the structure signifies the inherent strength of the ballerinas. Women love it for two reasons. The first is that they can truly look different on their wedding day and second, they can actually reuse some elements of the ensemble. For instance, one lady picked up a sari with a jacket and said that she will definitely team the jacket with plain black pants or denims after her wedding day. She was already deconstructing the ensemble to see how she can make use of it later. I think all this signifies the dawn of the new age bride, just like the tone of new age fashion came into being about five years back, with young designers like Nachiket Barve and Rahul Mishra taking centrestage. These guys clicked because the market was tired of seeing the same 20 designers doing the same thing since decades. It’s the same situation on the bridal front too. People want respite from decade old trends.

What is the biggest compliment the bridal line fetched you?

Nari: When someone came up to me and said that for her, that all the designers’ are on one side and my creations on the other. Don’t ask me which designers she was talking about though 😉

Fair enough.

Narendra Kumar Ahmed aka Nari

Desi bags in Sridevi’s videshi movie

In a still from English Vinglish, Sridevi is carrying the Arno bag by Hidesign. Price: Rs 3995

Sridevi’s fans are super-excited to see her make her comback with English Vinglish. Most homemakers are gung ho about the mostly simple sometimes elaborate South Indian style saris she’s worn in the film. But guess what we chanced upon? Even though Sridevi’s character in the film lives in USA, some of the bags she’s carrying are from Hidesign’s stable. Yup, apparently the brand retails from California too! Bet you didn’t know that! Carmel Plaza, Corner of Junipero and Ocean Avenue, Carmel By the Sea, California, to be precise. The brand has outlets in most malls in the country, so sourcing one in India shouldn’t be a problem. Now that women have Sridevi’s stamp of approval on it, we’re assuming these two pieces will soon fly off the shelf!

A movie still again, Sridevi is carrying the Estelle bag from Hidesign.
Price: Rs 2595

The stars shone at the GQ awards

John Abraham: Hey! Look. It’s John’s super skinny girlfriend, Priya Runchal.

Vikas Khanna: If only all chefs looked as dishy as him, all men would be encouraged to learn to cook.

Vidya Balan: When you’re happy and you know it, clap your hands. When you’re comfortable with your body and sense of style, it shows on your face and makes you look like a million bucks.

Bikram Saluja: The invite said Retro, not Pyjama party, Bikram. Sandal check, please…

Rahul Dravid: He took home the GQ Legend award. He may have retired from cricket but he’ll continue to rule our hearts, right gals?

Nargis Fakhri: Wood meets wood and we finally have an outfit that does justice to her wooden acting skills. Hallelujah!

Konkona Sen Sharma: Once an amma dresser, she’s evolved in her own amma way making geek look cool. The pop coloured sari gets a thumbs us from us, Koko.

Kalki Koechlin: Is she being bitten by a scorpion or is she growing wings? Can’t be too sure, but Kalki shows off her quirky sense of style in this golden gown. A little eye make-up would have made her look more alive, but we’re not complaining. Shhhh…

Kajol and Ajay Devgn: Ahem! Stubby calves are best hidden in long gowns but Kajol was never one to hide her flaws. Sky high heels, her attitude and husband as arm candy, Kajol gives hope to thousands of chubby women all over.

Deepika Padukone: This dress in Red! You have to be confident to make sure that you don’t end up looking like an attention seeking fashion wh*re. Luckily for us, Deepika Padukone can make anything look sexy and classy at the same time. This Gaurav Gupta outfit is not meant for everyone, but it looks like heaven sent for Dippy.