Meet my favorite Indian designer
I first became aware of Manish Arora when Nicki Minaj showed up on the red carpet in one of his designs, looking like a candy-coloured Indian goddess from outer space. This was about five years ago, and I have been following the Indian designer’s wacky and wonderful collections since. I just love his signature look: a modern silhouette in iridescent colours sprinkled with mythological references. As Manish says about his international success: “I am where I am today because I took my culture with me.” The sympathetic designer is based in Paris, but he insists on working with a range of traditional Indian craft methods including embroidery, appliqué and beading. I found out that a jewel-encrusted skirt that I coveted had taken 5 women in India 20 days to make!
I think for his Spring Summer 2015 show he really outdid himself. As always, he used beautiful fluid lines and psychedelic colours, but this time, there were also Hindu Gods and Goddess galore, like images of a handsome Lord Shiva and a pastel-coloured three-eyed Kali sticking out her tongue. Perhaps a reference to Manish Arora-fan Miley Cyrus? Girlpower has many faces..
Enjoy some of my favorite looks of the show:
In bed with Arianne
As far as I am concerned, there is only one heiress to Edith Head’s throne, and that is the magnificent Arianne Phillips (53), twice Oscar-nominated costume designer and Madonna’s favorite style-collaborator. Like Edith, she is a tastemaker and visionary in both film and fashion. And just like her legendary predecessor, she is a feminist icon in her own right. I had the rare chance to interview Arianne and ask her about Madonna, feminism in Hollywood and why she thinks lingerie is ‘everything’. “We definitely do NOT like to hide it!”
Where the ‘queen of cups’ meets the ‘dress doctor’
In art school, many years ago during a nude model drawing class, I had a life changing insight: What if I, as an artist, used a woman’s body as my canvas? If you make a painting, someone will hang it on their wall. If you design a chair, someone will sit on it. But if you design lingerie, someone will wear it, and by doing so, complete your art! I had found my mission.
My couture collection – a cross between magic and camouflage
All my work as a feminist designer is inspired by muses. Powerful female icons from past and present. Although women have been marginalized for centuries, archetypes of female power have always been there. Through my designs, I bring them to you. To help us shape the world of modern-day feminism.
“You can have anything in life if you dress for it” – Edith Head
Fabulous words, and they could easily have been mine, but it was the legendary Edith Head – one of Hollywood’s most iconic designers – who said this many decades ago.