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Mehraab by Arun Ahuja, Aarti Talwar, Anu Seth and John Marya. The first family of Indian Fashion… kind of like Versace.


When I visited their atelier a year back to check out the new label, I had felt like Alice tumbling down the proverbial rabbit hole when holding up each garment, which had taken master craftsmen months to create. So it's no wonder I felt a frisson of excitement as I awaited their destination wedding show at India Beach Fashion Week. It was a formidable force. Team Mehraab is family — one of their greatest strengths — sisters Anu Seth and Arti Talwar made headlines when their ensemble dressed the wax statue of Amitabh Bachchan at Madam Tussaud's London, their brother Arun Ahuja who diversified from construction to follow the design dream; and former supermodel John Marya.


As the show began with models in black and gold ensembles, I couldn't help admiring the opulence of textiles, intricate hand embroideries and masterful craftsmanship. For menswear, the designers trimmed volume, focussed on bombers with intricate threadwork and weightlessly constructed sherwanis. The womenswear was a work of art. The artfully draped saris, sharara pants and cape blouses were handcrafted with silk, velvet, georgette and cotton, with sona-chaandi gota, Paris threadwork, zardozi, gota, sequins and mirrorwork. The result? Although detailing transformed each garment into a heirloom, never once did craft overwhelm its contemporary character.


This was a classic collection with opulent styles for all those bridal engagements in the lives of heirs and heiresses. And as the show closed with showstopper Mr. India 2016 Rohit Khandelwal in a stunning ensemble, I couldn't help feeling this luxury label's rise will be meteoric—due to their will to push the design envelope with luxurious handwoven fabric and classic embellishment.


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