Designers and weavers steal the show at Rajasthan Heritage Week


Jaipur: Myriad interpretations of draping a sari or dhoti emerged on the Rajasthan Heritage Week (RHW) ramp, where designers, textile revivalists and weavers showcased their creative prowess.

The concluding day of the three-day gala here on Saturday night saw well-known designer duo Abraham and Thakore do a modernised take on the block printing technique of the state.

They used unusual block prints like houndstooth for tops, jackets, saris and more, apart from interspersing Rajasthani mojaris in their line for an extra edge.

Rajesh Thakore said they worked closely with khadi weavers and block printers to create the bespoke line for the event, and now they will even showcase an extension of the line at Paris.

Textile scholar Rita Kapur Chishti, who has been involved with research and development of handspun-handloom textiles, showcased the wonders of the six-yard cloth.

The draping, styling and pleating were far from the usual, and definitely gave onlookers innovative ideas to employ saris in day-to-day as well as occasion wear.

After the riot of colours that Chishti showcased, there was an all-natural khadi line by New York-based Swedish designer Lars Anderrson, whose take on unfinished garments was interesting to say the least.

He worked with raw fibre and tribal yarn to create anti-fit clothes stitched inside-out and unhemmed.

Next up was weaver Mustakeem Kachara from Kaithoon in Kota district.

His expertise lay in zari-laden Kota doria saris, but what stood out was how he has embraced abstract designs with changing times while also retaining the old world charm of the traditional motifs.

The National Award winner’s opening sari was a take on fruits, featuring strawberries, bananas, apple, et al. Need we say more?

The saga of the sari and sarongs continued with Pavithra Muddaya of Bengaluru’s famed handloom revivalist label Vimor. Her creations, in natural fibers such as cotton, silk, linen and bamboo, saw the use of motifs like rose water sprinklers, sheafs of paddy.

The revivalist’s bow to the audience was full of pride as she walked shoulder side by side, and hand-in-hand with her weavers.

Then came a double finale — Rohit and Abhishek followed by a showcase by Jaipur Modern.

Rohit and Abhishek, who are inspired by regalia of the Rajasthan royalty, brought an all-male line which had pieces made in wool khadi. Their designs were smart and wearable.

Abhishek even brought to the ramp a 94-year-old Bhagwan Sahay, a freedom fighter, whom he said had dedicated his life to the revival of Khadi.

Appreciating an initiative like RHW, Abhishek said Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje Scindia has always gone out of her way to support the cause of sustaining the arts, crafts and heritage of the state.

This, as witnessed by all attendees, was also evident from Raje’s presence at the gala on all three days, and she even shopped at the Crafts Bazaar at the venue here.

The showcase by Jaipur Modern, featuring a range of creations like open coats, dresses, boxer shorts, t-shirts, gowns and more, brought the curtains down on the gala.