Queen of kitsch, Nida Mahmood blends whimsy and tradition in her new collection, The Chillum Sisters
DELHI-BASED designer Nida Mahmood’s style mantra is all about balancing the right mix of ‘classic’ and ‘street’. Started in 2007, the 37-year-old designer from NIFT has Indian kitsch at the core of her label, and pairs whimsical styling with old-fashioned design. It was in 2009 while showcasing her Autumn-Winter Collection ‘High on Chai’, at Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week that she found her identity. Nida then brought out collections that showed off outlandish colours and brazen Indian designs through her lines Maachis, Sadak Chaap and Bioscope. Her collections Sapna Cinema and Bohemian Tamasha also won incredible reviews, while she has designed for Marie Claire, Lady Gaga, Nike and Absolute, to add.
A land far far away
It’s been four long years since Nida last came to Chennai. However, with her brand’s strong artistic veneer, she is now back with her latest collection, The Chillum Sisters. The collection is an easy, relaxed line of linens and mercerised cottons, in indigo and rich reds. The line is true to its roots and represents organic India, according to Nida. “The collection is about bonding, relationships, friendship and it’s about a good energy. I’ve also tried to bring the whole idea of a very far away Indian vibe.” The designer has used the Japanese tying techniques of Shibori and resist printing for Chillum Sisters. With the tie and dye technique, she has brought about a sense of individualism where she explains that no two ties are the same. “No matter how much you try, one tie will always end up looking slightly different from the others. It’s very individualistic and a lot of love goes into each piece.”
Dye another day
With a range of pieces from dresses, tunics, anti-fitted kurtas, and salwars to tops and pajamas, Nida likes to describe it as ‘easy wear’ or ‘loungewear’. With regard to fabrics used, Nida has used organic cotton, linen and natural fibers. She has also used mercerised cotton, also known as ‘pearl’ or ‘pearle’ cotton, where the cotton thread is giving a sodium hydroxide bath, and then neutralised with an acid bath. This process increases lustre, strength, affinity to dye and resistance to mildew.
The Chillum Sisters will have on display about 18 pieces, in different silhouettes, cuts and designs. Nida is working on an interesting collaboration currently, however she does not want to disclose any details just yet.
Starting from `5,600.