Ladakh the inspiration for Shantanu-Nikhil's Spr-Sum '09 collectio

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New Delhi, Oct 10 (UNI) It is a fashion collection inspired by the extreme nature of Ladakh with colour palettes of cement grey and pristine blue.

The Spring Summer 2009 collection by eminent fashion designers Shantanu-Nikhil for the big daddy of fashion events-Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week - was showcased here with Bollywood star and former Miss India Diya Mirza walking the ramp.

''We have chosen Ladakh as inspiration for our new collection titled 'Serenity'. It symbolise s a woman who is awed by nature and we chose film star Diya Mirza to represent our work as she has a demure and virginal look. Her body type is fit for our clothes. Above all, she's a natural beauty,'' the designer duo, who have partnered with fiama Di Wills for the Fashion Week to be held during October 15-19 in the capital, told UNI at a curtain raiser of their collection here.

On their aspirations behind this collection, Shantanu said, ''We've always believed in classical beauty. Our clothes have edgy feel to them. We're going to be trendsetters. For this collection, we threw all our books on trends out of the closet.'' Elaborating on why they chose Ladakh as backdrop for their collection, Nikhil replied, ''It's not that we chose Ladakh, Ladakh chose us. We wanted to epitomise things in nature where there is life and death. The colour palette we have given in our collection is darker - cement, ash grey and pristine blue. we have used a lot of fabrics, even plastic in our creations. The idea was to bind plastic with nature. We have worked on this collection without any tools. We have not used any machines, it's all done by hand almost like working on a canvas.'' The silhouettes in their collection are dramatic this time. There is a mix and match of 3D textures through hand-woven surfacing of silk frills. ''The use of net in the form of bandage on the body creates an ultra luxurious look and at the same time, displays the power of adversity.

''While the oversized jackets in textured silks display digital stone prints , fluid jersey dresses under the jackets create a blend of harshness with the softness of nature,'' the duo said.

However, Shantanu and Nikhil dismissed any apprehension of economic recession having an impact on the sales of their new works, saying that recession was expected but it would not affect India.

''Our clothes are targeted at the new generation. The next 5-8 years are going to belong to it. The new age youths in this country are very fashion conscious and experimental.'' When asked what fashion means for the designer duo, Shantanu said, ''It's not about colours. Fashion is what you wear and how you wear it.'' Nikhil was particularly upbeat about India's first ever Menswear Fashion Week to be held in February 2009. ''It will be a bomb. It will help the fashion industry grow immensely.'' UNI AR-PK RC VC1115

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