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Indian sari getting knotty
Hermes limited edition sari
When Maheshwaris and Patolas compete with Coupons Indiens and Fleurs Indiennes, it's obvious that the story of the Indian sari is getting knotty. Last week, as a salute to India's soft power and its new store in Mumbai, Parisian fashion house Herm?s launched its exclusive and limited set of sarees. The collection of mousseline, cashmere and silk twill sarees, a spokesperson said, was the realisation of Herm?s' desire of interpreting the sari as a sophisticated and easy-to-wrap-around piece. The line was developed in Lyon under artistic director Pierre-Alexis Dumas. "India has been an endless source of inspiration for Herm?s throughout its history. Fashioned from the most beautiful materials for summer and winter seasons, the sari prints refer to mythic and contemporary Herm?s scarves, " the spokesperson says. The sari comes with a made-tomeasure choli in a specially created box.
Louis Vuitton Diwali display and sari dresses
Last October, 454 of Louis Vuitton's stores, across five continents were uncharacteristically blingy with lanterns, trunks and a line of couture sari-dresses with vintage zari gotas and kairis. It was the first time that the brand celebrated a single festival in its 157-year-long history. The fashion house also created a special fabric to mark Diwali that featured a mix of monogram flowers and Indian motifs. The ties the brand shares with India go back to the 1920s when Indian royalty ordered custom-made leather trunks. "The decision to celebrate Diwali in all its stores across the world, was taken to specifically honour the common values that Louis Vuitton shares with India, the respect for tradition and the passion for innovation, " a spokesperson says.
In 2008, Italian haute couture label Armani included the Indian sherwani, "a long coat-like garment worn in India and which is similar to a doublet". "The fact that Armani is embracing and producing the Indian sherwani in its collections proves the inspiration that India provides to the high-end Italian fashion world, " a spokesperson from industry body CII told the press.
Jimmy Choo's Chandra clutch
This exotic metallic elaphe snake clutch bag's (above) personality lies in its banded metal closure. Its Indianness is in the measured bling, off-center placement and its "exotic name".
Dior's Rajasthani line
In 2004, Christian Dior's springsummer collection carried an 'Indian patchwork' line. From Rajasthani motifs, phulkari, batik, mirrors and 'aari' embroidery for jackets to 'ambis' and ghungroos on accessories. "I went on a magical trip to India and just about everything captured my imagination. When I travel for my research trips we make sure to capture every moment on either photo or on film. On our return to Paris we put it all together. . . images of people in the streets, evenings of traditional dance, a wedding ceremony, even a close up of the hand-painted toenails of an elephant, " Dior's artistic director John Galliano told reporters.
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