Ashwin Thiyagarajan’s spring/summer collection is ethereal and perfect for a beach wedding
Voluminous tulle lehengas and saris in shades of peach, powder blue, lavender and lime yellow; a pop of bright green, orange or magenta floral embroidery on the blouses, multi-coloured thread work that resembles polka dots on flowy ombre-dyed skirts - Ashwin Thiyagarajan's spring/summer collection looks nothing short of a dreamy garden on a summer morning.
“I have always been an admirer of flowers. I like them in gardens, I like them in my home in a vase, I love them on my mom's hair, just the very thought of them puts me in a good mood. Nothing screams spring/summer like beautiful blossoms do. That is what my collection is all about!” says the 29-year-old Chennai designer.
Having stuck to rather basic silhouettes, Ashwin, who is popular for his lehengas and bridal gowns says he has use metres and metres of tulle for the skirts in the collection in order to give it an actual flower-like resemblance. Talking about how this collection stands out from his rest, the designer says, “When it comes to ethnic wear, especially lehengas, we tend to usually go for Indian fabrics like raw silk, silk or tussar, which I haven’t done. Also, contrary to popular practice when it comes to ethnic bridal wear, I have used very minimal gold in embroidery. This collection has a very contemporary feel to it which makes it very fresh and out of my normal comfort zone. The silhouettes are very wearable. There are also a few risque blouses which will be perfect for a beachside mehendi or sangeet!”
Although net/tulle is the base for this collection, Ashwin has used raw silk for the blouses and borders. When observed closely, one can find that different textures have been used to represent different flowers such as peonies and lilies. We ask him how he reinvents the florals, considering they seem to be almost every designer’s favourite theme these days and he says, “My interpretation is with texture, whether it is the voluminous skirts that are ombre-dyed or the embroidery that took months to perfect. When you see the collection, I want people to feel like they are in a magical garden.”
Having opened his designer boutique in Adyar last year, Ashwin says he will soon do men’s line inspired by flowers. “I'm working on several new collections. An affordable earthy cotton range, a wedding gown collection and also a new ethnic bridal collection. As an artist, it is thoroughly exciting to see your concept come alive. So, I'm very excited about the new collections,” he signs off.
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