Even in khadi, there’s fashion !

khadi-1Khadi – the new fashion statement
Khadi – the Indian fabric that spearheaded Indian independence movement, the yarn that was spun on a charkha and became the symbol of dignity, self reliance, and defiance of foreign control has come a full circle.
After independence, the fabric went on to become a political statement and you had the leaders and politicians of the land wearing Khadi, apart from a small section of people, especially from rural India that had easy access to the fabric, and loved the feel of it. From such a scenario to the modern day when more and more Indian fashion designers are veering towards sustainable fabrics and have rediscovered the magic of Khadi, it is indeed long way. No sooner did that designers started introducing Khadi on the fashion ramps, the demand for the finest of Khadi grew and gave way to new versions of Khadi like the famous handloom revivalist Uzramma’s Malkha – an ecologically sensible yarn produced following the field to fabric chain, in small quantities, using the least invasive and damaging process. In addition to ensuring that the primary producers own and manage the fabric, the process ensures that the natural lustre and bounce of the fabric is retained, which is visibly evident when you compare it with cotton fabric produced in huge quantities at spinning mills.
khadi-2Interestingly, at the recently held Lakme Fashion Week 2016, many young designers used Khadi on the ramp. To begin with Gaurang Shah, (who has always been using this Desh ki Fabric), has used textures like Muga, Tussar, Dupion, Silk in Khadi that is weaved using Jamdhani technique to create Indian sarees and western evening wear gowns there by taking not just Khadi but the heritage treasure of Indian weaves, Jamdhani to international stage. Incidentally, both Gaurang shah and Malkha are of Hyderabad origin.
Vijaivargie from Jaipur has used Khadi appliqués extensively in her collection. Her designs are an interesting combination of medieval chintz pattern and contemporary silhouettes with floral motifs and spring colours – blues, salmon, crimson etc and she calls it ‘Bagh’. It is for the first time that she has used Khadi, and is extremely happy to have forayed into sustainable fashion, and this she repeatedly mentioned in all her interviews.
Urvashi Kaur is yet another designer who uses Khadi innovatively in her western wear and her tribe is only increasing. The trend is sure to catch up and we predict that you shall see more of Khadi being explored in high end fashion. And the time is ripe for Khadi to aim for wider appeal.

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