Five designers spill their couture secrets as the countdown to wedding season begins

As wedding season nears, you’re bound to be wondering what to wear. Are capes still in? Is velvet so last season? In India, where couture is synonymous with weddings, whether you’re a bride-to-be or a bridesmaid or just a guest who’s trying to stand out, the need of the hour is to stay fashionably relevant. We talked to five designers who will be showcasing at the Vogue Wedding Show this year for an update on what to wear for the season of nuptial festivities.

Payal Singhal

Technique: Filigree work and traditional gota and zardosi work are Singhal’s picks for the season, as she says it will be delicate patterns on contemporary silhouettes that will be big this year.

Fabric: She also predicts a wispy theme as lighter fabrics like silks, muls and organzas, and handwoven fabrics like brocades and jamevars, according to her, will be de rigeur.

Styling: “The dupatta will be more or less redundant and lehengas will be worn with either no dupattas or capes,” predicts the designer, adding, “For jewellery I see a big trend of mixing real luxe jewellery with contemporary high street pieces.”

Gaurav Gupta

Technique: Famous for reinventing the sari gown, the designer is expecting a very innovative wedding season. “There will be a lot of detailing which will go into it, like a 3D organza fabric,” he says. Since necklines have much more character, we will see more of asymmetric off-shoulders, open necks and high necks, he adds.

Fabric: Gupta quite simply predicts the mainstay of rich fabrics for the wedding season, but for his collection for VWS, he says fabrics will be ‘indigenously developed by the brand’. Curious? So are we.

Styling: Jewellery trends, for Gupta, are going to be minimal and sophisticated. “The neckpieces are going to get smaller and the chandelier earrings are going to get bigger. Ear cuffs will still be on trend. There will also be much more concentration on rings this season,” he decrees.

Rahul Mishra

Technique: “While we are moving back to more traditional aari and zardosi, there is a definite focus on graphics and patterns, with an inclination towards more painterly and artistic designs with birds and floras,” says the designer. “Also now, because we have access to all techniques, we can explore mix-media applications.”

Fabric: For this season, Mishra forsees the dominance of sheer fabrics, namely organza, from Paris Couture Week as well as the Indian fashion scenario. “I think velvets are too heavy and dense, and we’re moving away from weighty fabrics to textures that can be explored with volume,” he says.

Styling: “We’re moving away from the basic anarkali to something that is more structured, taking inspiration from a lot of outerwear and traditional Indian wear to create hybrids of traditional silhouettes and tailored coats,” predicts Mishra this season.

Monisha Jaising

Technique: Zardozi and aari embroideries are timeless, says Jaising, but she says that the mix of contemporary silhouettes with this traditional style will be in for brides this season. Brocades, benarasi weaves and cotton silk brocade weaving are all on the cards for weddings, she adds.

Fabric: Lamé is Jaising’s pick for the season, since it “totally transforms summer days into nights and exudes a futuristic and chic effect,” she adds. Old favourites like metallics and tulle are for the sangeet or cocktail function, since today’s brides value comfort and functionality over anything else.

Styling: Predicting that brides will opt for lighter jewellery this year, Jaising says that sometimes an heirloom piece will shine brighter than diamonds. Another popular trend? Braids! “Whether it’s the classic halo braid or side swept fishtail braid, they have been seen everywhere from the red carpet to chic parties,” she says, adding that seashell-style buns too are touted to be big next year.


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