Abraham & Thakore’s collection is a monochrome wrap
The men behind the label A&T, the Delhi-based designers David Abraham and Rakesh Thakore, explore a fluid relation between stitched, traditional and unstitch-ed contemporary clothing in their spring-summer collection, which is now being presented in the city. Having recently celebrated 25 years in the fashion industry, Abraham offers, “Fashion is a vibrant part of India today, and we must encourage and support young Indian designers with their own voice. And as it gets more culture-specific, we need to develop our own fashion solutions to answer our very particular cultural, climatic and geographic requirements.”
Out of the woods
In their new collection, the duo pair contemporary separates like jackets and tunics with traditional separates like saris, dupattas and dhotis. The focus is on the process of creating patterns on the surface, using uncarved solid wood blocks. Each impression of the wood block varies slightly according to the pressure exerted by the printer, creating subtle unique variations on each individual garment. “We explore the power of simple linear and block-like forms this season, as block-printing was the technique that formed the basis of textile element earlier. The power of black and white conveys the strength of the forms,” says Abraham.
Although their palette is mostly monochromatic, there are bursts of blues and mustard as well. Picking his favourite from the line, he says, “We created two special floral motifs based on the carnation and tulip. Both flowers were enlarged, carved on wood blocks and printed on kurtas, lehengas, and saris.”Keeping in mind the varying weather patterns across India, the designers have played on silk, cotton, and chanderi.“While the irregularity of wooden blocks gives the fabric a particular subtle texture, it also allows one to engineer the coloured areas as per each garment. It must be noted that many of the garments are printed after stitching,” he says.
A bold new world
With woven handlooms and deconstructed styles trending among designers like Rajesh Pratap Singh and Payal Pratap, Abraham is of the opinion that deconstructed looks reflect an easier approach, and relaxed rules to fashion, where one can take a more individual approach to dressing. While the duo seek inspiration from ancient handcrafted textile techniques.“We never quite know what we are going to experiment with, that’s the excitement of creativity that makes each collection as exciting as the first one, even after 25 years. And we’re beginning initial explorations in different design directions,” he concludes.
At Amethyst. `3,900 upwards. October 28-November 8. Details:45991630