Is New Always Better? | Verve Magazine
India's premier luxury lifestyle women's magazine
April 17, 2016

Is New Always Better?

Text by Nisha Jhangiani

Are we getting carried away with our innovations?

Snapchat — a mobile app that allows users to send and receive ‘self-destructing’ photos and videos. Photos and videos taken with the app are called ‘Snaps’.

It’s been so long since I’ve tried to wrap my head around the purpose of the above app that I’m sure something more au courant has already replaced it. But seriously, what is the point of these nanosecond videos that disappear in less than the time it takes to create a perfect smoky eye?

I’m all for the new, the fresh, the innovative, the up-to-the-minute trend. But are we getting complacent and lazy with our ideas or, at other times, simply screeching for attention? Underarm hair is signalling a return, Thailand is big on Hitler-mania fashion, meggings (male leggings) are the It thing and don’t even get me started on eye tattoos — all curious cats can google what this barf-inducing fad entails.

I have welcomed boyfriend blazers, skinny jeans, wedge sneakers, oversized bags and denim-on-denim separates with seamless ease into my bulging wardrobe even as I’m nowadays attempting a ‘groutfit’ — a head-to-toe grey look that can be rather chic but also terminally depressing.

‘Athleisure’, though, I’m wary of. Gym clothes outside of the gym don’t work well with my selection of handmade Eina Ahluwalia pendants or my blood-red Chloé Faye tote. At the most, I could suggest this exercise gear for a spring-cleaning spree of one’s closet and it could definitely be the outfit of choice whilst bathing one’s dog. Now if we’re talking athleisure as presented by Stella McCartney and Gucci, or closer home by Hemant and Nandita, Namrata Joshipura and Sanchita, I’m happy to get me one of those tennis dresses, pull on my dust-gathering Karl Lagerfeld wedge sneakers and head out to a music festival.

Individuality and newness of thought should be applauded; I prefer to add a caveat where some sense of aesthetic is factored in. Kareena Kapoor Khan’s recent outing in a Dev R Nil sari paired with a vintage Lacroix jacket and a chunky Amrapali silver neckpiece was such a refreshing statement. Gwen Stefani’s constantly updated hairdos make a bold and appealing impact every single time. And the latest Pirelli calendar featuring accomplished women in all shapes and sizes, painstakingly photographed by the equally gifted Annie Leibovitz, was just such a smashing idea accompanied by an uplifting message.

Let’s experiment with the unknown by all means. But if a French manicure spells indisputable elegance unlike a set of garishly printed, stick-on nails, then why opt for the latter at all. Fashion is so cyclical that nothing is intrinsically novel anymore; just recycled or reinvented. Why not choose wisely….

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