Meet my favorite Indian designer

by Marlies Dekkers
Stars like Rihanna, M.I.A and Katy Perry go gaga for Manish Arora, and so do I! Meet the designer who has built a global following while staying unapologetically Indian.

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:

Most loved
Between king and QUEEN

MD Friends

Between king and QUEEN

by marlies|dekkers

Who is Tasya van Ree? The mysterious girl in the big black hat has been fascinating art connoisseurs and fashion lovers alike since she burst onto the scene with her stunning black-and-white photographs of celebrities like Michelle Rodriguez and (one-time lover) Amber Heard. I asked the Hawaiian-born visual artist of Dutch-Japanese ancestry (41) about her art and soul. « Between both King and Queen is where I exist. »

BRAVE ballerina

MD Friends

BRAVE ballerina

by marlies|dekkers

Sara Mearns (31) is New York City Ballet’s boldest ballerina. A passionate, intense dancer, she started dancing at 3 and starred in Swan Lake when she was only 19. But instead of resting on her laurels, Sara has kept challenging herself with daring projects, from a collaboration with hip-hop dancers to a leading role in a Broadway show. I talked with the fierce Swan Queen about sacrifices, body confidence, and how to turn pain into gain. “I’m not the typical skinny, tall, long-neck kind of ballerina.”

The art of love!

Marlies Says

The art of love!

by marlies|dekkers

Get your creative juices flowing

This Valentine’s, don’t wait around for that love-note or those fancy chocolates to feel loved and desired. Express yourself to fall in love with yourself, now!