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Fashion
February 20, 2017

In Conversation With: Ujjawal Dubey At London Fashion Week

Text by Sadaf Shaikh

5 emerging Indian designers, supported by IMG Reliance, took home the award for the Best International Fashion Showcase at London Fashion Week. Here’s a look at their work, influences, and creative techniques

How have you incorporated the theme of ‘The Indian Pastoralists’ in your showcase?
“I have chosen to interpret my designs through the North Indian tribe of the Van Gujjars. They are nomadic water buffalo herders whose lives revolve around caring and finding food for their animals. My collection is all about applying a new-age rendition to their clothing both aesthetically and practically.”

What are the elements that influenced your collection?
“I was inspired by the tribe’s characteristic style of draping which blends in seamlessly with our brand aesthetic of nuanced details, smart cuts and relaxed silhouettes.”

What are the local elements that you have tried to retain?
“The Van Gujjars have a distinctive style of layering — they wrap a shawl around their shoulders, under which they wear a vest, under which you will find their long kurtas or loose shirts with salwars. The look is then topped of with Mughal turbans and juttis. I have retained these elements while treating them with the philosophy of my brand ethos.”

Whom do you design for?
“Antar-Agni’s style is always centered around individuality. My designs are for those who believe in departure from conventional style. They leave a lasting impact wherever they go and have a strong aura surrounding them.”

How have you maintained a balance between an Indian and global aesthetic?
“The textiles and drapes have essentially been influenced by India. However, I’ve adapted it to the aesthetics of the global audience through the details and cuts.”

What are the techniques and textiles used?
“I have used heavy, handwoven fabric interspersed with scribble embroidery to represent patchwork along with the selvedge of the fabric to indicate its rawness.”

London is…
“Inspiring because of its architecture.”

A show that you would want to attend at London Fashion Week…
“Yohji Yamamoto, Hussein Chalayan and Iris Van Herpen.”

Read about Ragini Ahuja’s installation here.

Read about Kaleekal’s installation here.

Read about Karishma Shahani’s installation here.

Read about Priyanka Lama’s installation here.

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