What to wear would be the most difficult question we must be asking ourselves in the present day. That is precisely because clothes not only represent beauty and comfort, but also resemble culture and what we stand for in the current world of chaos and confusion. This is because today we use our bodies to get our word across. We fight for equal rights and equal pay, we fight for freedom and constitutional rights despite getting injured and beaten up. This is why designers around the world have been embracing powerful themes in their work that resonate with the society.
“This season I was thinking about the tension between refinement and rebellion” says the infamous Victoria Beckam. Her collection this year was inspired by spirited women who showcased powerful attitudes and unabashedly contributed to movements around the world, staying at the forefront of all of it while juggling with their everyday lives. This also reflects in the kind of silhouettes, colours and patterns that go into creating a single piece. Today, the designs are more intricate and colours are bolder. This may be due to the fact that the nature of human beings in the society can no more be predetermined. Taking the case of women, on one hand she is the fragile and worrying mother of her child and in the next moment she is seen relentlessly fighting for her rights. Therefore the intricacy represent the soft interior which is too mild to notice in the face of the bold exterior but nevertheless a prominent part in putting everything together. Also, the themes often represent the tribute paid to a section of society to empower and strengthen them.
In India, one of the designers that caught my attention in this regard has been Sabyasachi Mukherjee and the show he helps host, Band Baaja Baarat. Marriage in India represents the most important transformation and moment in a women’s life. Over the years the show has come to represent the way in which women view what they wear in terms of the colours and designs they choose. In the earlier times women preferred only red and heavy designs as per their parent’s approval. Rather, we now see them as beings with utmost clarity on how they want to look from head to toe while embracing different colours and silhouettes.
I remember the red veil being gently cast over the infamous boxer Babita Phogat’s head, her rugged and coarse exterior and her scars shining bright in the face of all the glam and glitter. Her face in that moment did not have the blush and shyness that overcome the brides in general but was consumed by the strength and power of a boxer. And so her clothes and jewellery represented that. The representation of such women that exemplify extraordinary strength and power is fashions way of creating a movement that will go down in history for years to come.
When women once wore cloths to cover their bodies, today we wear them to showcase the beauty of our bodies. We wage wars in them; we change the course of our life in them. Clothes have become a statement. Like my mother once said to me, “There is meaning in fashion, find the one that suits you and walk with confidence.”