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LAST DAY AT LAKME FASHION WEEK

ANJHULA MYA SINGH BAIS  (click here to know more about this blogger)

So, what do you know, the last day turns out to be the most hectic! I thought I might have some time in between to attend a champagne and cigar soiree but that was complete wishful thinking! 

Day 5 always has energy to it; it's the last day finally. After being poked and prodded, endless directions on a loud mic, always being on call for a photo op or press conference it's finally over until next season that is!

Started the day in the best possible way with a throwback to my Rajput roots, my most favourite sport in the world is Polo and we took to the runway wearing Rina Shah's impeccable Polo-inspired Rinaldi collection stemming from her new love and passion of horse riding and learning to play Polo. Besides the done to death Ralph Lauren Polo, there was a gap in the market for an equestrian-inspired line. Shah, who has been the reigning accessories designer in India for the past decade, didn't disappoint. She inculcated real talent as opposed to Bollywood and had the hugely talented polo player Angad Kalaan, former Indian world cup captain for Polo, as well as aspiring players hit the runway. 'A breath of fresh air' as described by various media outlets, Angad spoke about the collection as being a hit on and off the field. Rina and I bonded over our love for of course Polo, and the colour green. After the press conference she totally surprised me by saying the outfit was mine. I really look forward to wearing the ultra chic duds to the Polo final at Mahalaxmi Race Course on Saturday!

In the same slot was Rohan Arora whose passion is shoes. What impressed me most about Rohan is his humility and kindness. A hard worker who has assisted Sabyasachi (who sat front row to cheer on his intern), Rohan is intelligent and weaved a story that dealt with the current crisis of the economy. It went from yesterday to today to tomorrow and included animal motifs, parrots and birds as embellishments on chappals as well as Hindi scrolls on the sandals. The line progressed from rags to riches with some models having the bare minimum chappals to other 'society' models having opulent shoes that had to be carried. It was interesting to see that within the opulent shoes contained a simple chappal that was detachable thereby implying nothing is permanent; the seed and existence of one situation lies within another. We can have Rs. 10 one day and 1 lakh the next, dependent on the environment and times we live in. Rohan was a pro at the press conference, which is more than I can say for his contemporary Rachana Reddy who not only lost the outfit I had painfully done fittings for but had me walk on the runway with a dress that had water stains on the back and front and to add to that, she was painfully short of quality content in her answers at the press conference! 

The second show was Lina Tipnis'. Elegant, simplistic cocktail dresses for the society maven, we were briefed to angle our faces to the camera to give mileage to the jewelry we were wearing, which was sponsored. We were not allowed to take on or take off the jewelry without supervision, expensive as they were! Lina was backstage going over each outfit on the model which I appreciate as I have seen far too many designers busy in hair and make-up and caring about how they look as opposed to their clothes!

Next was Satya Paul. My association goes back a long long way with them. Jyoti Narula was my neighbor in New Delhi and just like he has seen me grow up, I too have seen Satya Paul evolve collection after collection. Always taking on something new (Calvin and Hobbes, New York City skyline and the Tarot Card collection last summer), this collection was inspired by under-the-sea. In arresting hues of blue and shimmer, we walked in dim lights and wave lighting to give the affect of ripples. It's frightening to say but I'm almost more comfortable in a sari now than I am in track pants but that's a good thing; it would make my Rajput mother who adores her chiffon and pearls, smile!

By this time, I was utterly exhausted and still had photographs to take for my agent in New York and from the media lounge where I was blogging, I got called in for a group shot. This is an idea implemented by outgoing IMG employee Sujal Shah and it is a good one, a nice keepsake of all the people that made it happen for any particular season. We took the group shot and than it was off for the most challenging show yet, the Grand Finale.

Gauri and Nainika had a Garden of Eden theme created by Sumant Jaikishan with dry leaves all around the seating and a mirror cobblestone walk way for the runway. They had a moon suspended from the ceiling in which Lakme girl Amrit came down, looking every inch a fairy. All 30 girls had particular looks. Mine was fairy and pink; others were gold, blue and hues of pastel. The eyes were so intricately done with almost paisley-like prints and sparkle for nail polish. It was any girl's fairytale dream come true! One of the highlights in addition to the clothes were the two performers on 6-foot high stilts, dancing and walking that left all to jaw dropping and cheering. These Emmy performers definitely left everyone in total surprise, as it was so unexpected. They were so riveting to watch that everyone backstage stopped what they were doing and were jostling for space on the little TV to catch a glimpse; it was reminiscent of how people crowd around a TV to watch cricket! Here one saw Gauri and Nainika's signature of tulle, lace, bows and opulence… beautiful gowns that made one feel like they were floating, complimented with a smart array of cocktail dresses in the same color palette. Given that the runway was quite a challenge to walk on, the second before I hit the stage, I did a little prayer and reminded myself I am born to do this and it went off without a hitch. One can only imagine how much time and patience it takes to get 40 girls ready at such a level of detail. Thankfully, we had Clint Fernandez and his team working with the mega talented stylist Gautam Kalra, and between having rose buds put in my hair, I caught up with Clint since we hadn't seen each other since my time at MTV!

Gauri and Nainika had Medieval Punditz's Gaurav Raina do the wicked electronic music to the show; next time I'll be offering my services of playing the electric violin for live music! Now of course, there is always the wondering of what is going on in people's minds that sit and watch the show, especially the front row. Emerging designer Anand Kabra from Hyderabad seems determined to make his voice heard amongst the bigwigs in the big city and his tweets throughout the show; though lacking in substance, it more than made up in the amount of lack-of-awareness that tweeting rude things about a contemporary is firstly not a kind thing but secondly a big PR no-no. It might have been slightly different if a maestro like Rohit Bal had something to say. Ditto for Masaba. Having worn both Gauri and Nainika's clothing and Masaba's, it's amusing that the latter would have anything negative to say about the former… especially when the former would not say anything about anyone no matter how atrocious. Remember, being diplomatic and finding the positive in anything is fashionable! 

Along with my colleague Diva, we made a brief appearance at China House for the closing party. Rife with celebrities, I didn't know where to turn as every minute I was being asked to pose with a friend whether it was former veejays Gaurav Kapur, Kim Jagtiani, Kimaya's Pradeep Hirani or former IMG honcho and now coveted fashion consultant Fern Mallis. Photographer Farrokh Chothia thought it was the coolest thing he has seen in a very long time when absolutely tired of being in heels, I slipped out of my Louboutins  and walked around barefoot with a nice sparkly Lakme pedicure and carried them in my hands. More than any of the flash, dazzle and pop, I always have and always will enjoy my one to one conversations with people. I was thrilled to find out tucked away in a corner that Sabina Chopra received her PhD in Special Education from Columbia University where I currently read Psychology. We had a very real conversation joined in by Fern Mallis, Ravi Krishnan, Anil Chopra, Anjana Sharma and many others in and out. It's so important to enjoy the moment in the moment. 

That, in a nutshell, was ten days of experiences condensed into five blogs. Thank you, readers, for giving me the momentum to keep writing when all I wanted to do sometimes was crawl under the make-up table and sleep. Until the autumn winter 2011 season, remember beauty is inside out.

Anjhula Mya Singh Bais

Stylist Aki Narula and Anjhula Mya Singh Bais in Satya Paul
 
Make-up star Clint Fernandez putting rosebuds in my hair before the finale
 
Lina Tipnis and Anjhula Mya Singh Bais
 
Lakme group photo
 
Kaylee, eating a roti as we wait for the finale to start
 
Fern Mallis and Anjhula Mya Singh Bais
 
17-MARCH-2011
 
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14 Comments
 
04-APRIL-2011 Rohan Arora
Hi Anjula... Great blog... thanks for the kind words....hope you're doing well... Keep up the good work... cheers!!!!
 
 
21-MARCH-2011 Manindar Singh
these tweets are a sign of a public platform being misused by uneducated people
 
 
21-MARCH-2011 Nidhi Rai
who was the mystery man?????
 
 
18-MARCH-2011 rina shah
great blog Anjhula ... so glad we met .. thanks a ton for the compliments .
 
 
18-MARCH-2011 Anjana Sharma
Anjhula, it was a pleasure working with someone so thoroughly professional and honest as you. warm hugs..and till we meet again.
 
 
17-MARCH-2011 Rinaldo Roddelega
Pure amazement -- you tell it like it is, girl ! Keep up the great work -- feel like I'm literally sitting front row.
 
 
17-MARCH-2011 aman singh
So did u find out who your mystery admirer was? I follow your blogs religiously and saw 'his' comments on the past few ones!
 
 
17-MARCH-2011 vivek bahl
love your blogs... used to it every day. now what do we do?
 
 
17-MARCH-2011 ashima singh
Anand Kabra is worse. His comments are downright disgusting. "Fantasy with oversized flowers and extra tall people...errr nightmare?" and "What's with the social lot? A gathering of fashionistas has started to look like a drag show in vegas!" The Lakme Fashion Week team is quiet at such disrespect to their grand finale designers?
 
 
17-MARCH-2011 natasha jain
I am a freelance fashion PR and I do have the years of experience to comment that it is terrible to see young designers behaving in a low down manner by running each other down! I just read Masaba Gupta's Twitter page and on being reprimanded by some people from the industry, she writes "Would have loved to comment but retaliation is SO last season :-)" Is this a new way to get publicity? Rohit Bal was there throughout fashion week and certainly did not pass comments the way these kids have been twittering. The Lakme Fashion Week management should reprimand them, in my opinion.
 
 
17-MARCH-2011 lata nishchal
How can they pass dirty remarks on Twitter against each other? That's DISGUSTING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I really liked Masaba's showing but am finding this hard to digest. Check out her Twitter wall: @masaba
 
 
17-MARCH-2011 Lalita Soni
Anand Kabra and Masaba are backbiting their seniors? Agreed, they are good designers and emerging talent but who are they to put down anyone?
 
 
17-MARCH-2011 Komal Sarin
The reason I keep coming back to your blog every time you post one is your honesty. Unlike 99 per cent of the Indian models, you have the guts to call a spade a spade.
 
 
17-MARCH-2011 Paromita Chowdhury
Thanks for letting us into the REAL WORLD of fashion, Anjhula.
 
 
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