Every year, ELLE and FDCI team up to create a platform where young talent can announce themselves, all guns blazing, onto the Indian fashion landscape. This year, four exciting names have made the cut to present their collections on the FIRST CUT 2017 ramp at Amazon India Fashion Week S/S18
With the simple ideology of reinventing Kantha embroidery from West Bengal and uplifting the traditional khadi fabric, this young Kolkatta-based label (founded in 2017) looks up to supermodel Indrani Dasgupta as a close mentor. Handcrafted fabrics like cotton and khadi take centre stage, while silhouettes are mostly modern, clever interpretations of the sari in earthy organic tones. Samanta finds inspiration in the works of craft maestro Sanjay Garg of Raw Mango and artisanal Italian designers Daniela Gregis. Her muse: Anne Hathaway, who she would like to dress in an organic sari one day. She says, “The FIRST CUT show is an amalgamation of all the hard work I have put in over the years and the last few months to create this collection for ELLE. It’s definitely a nerve wrecking experience.”
In 2016, designer duo Kunal Virwani and Aditi Mohoni (a former lawyer) took a road trip to Gujarat where they experienced rich textiles and weaving techniques that led them to launch their brand as an e-commerce portal in 2017. Aureole, meaning 'halo’, translates to something that is pure and unadulterated which comes through their minimalist simple designs. Based out of Mumbai and working with khadi cotton, their silhouettes comprise of pantsuits, day dresses and cover-ups with pocket detailing. This millennial team mixes prints in an organic way: stripes on stripes, or even bold lines combined with with polka dots creating unique playful patterns. “Never in our wildest dreams did we imagine that we would be showcasing at such an incredible show. We're thrilled to debut at Amazon India Fashion Week and can't to see what's in store for us.”
Third Floor by Saloni Sakaria
Launched in 2017, the Mumbai-based label stands for women empowerment and individuality. A vintage colour palette, natural fabrics and androgynous silhouettes such as their unique take on the traditional salwar kameez define the label. Layering is an essential component of the brand — expect floral cover-ups worn with tunic and pants. A successful internship under designer Gavin Miguel helped designer Saloni Sakaria's hone her craft. She's also inspired by spaces and interior design, and mixed the two into her creative process. “This show has been everything I've only dreamed of and I couldn't have been more grateful to be a part of it. Especially when it's come my way shortly after the launch of my label.”
Having interned with the likes of Dhruv Kapur of DRVV, Gaurav Jai Gupta of Akaaro and Bodice by Ruchika Sachdeva, this Delhi-based designer focuses on the concept of slow fashion, something that’s been a talking point for a while. With a simple minimal aesthetic, each piece in her collection has its own sense of intricate detailing. The leather design graduate from NIFT Kolkata works with an understated colour palette driven by soft pastels, techniques like Jamdani weaving and floral motifs (inspired by the flora and fauna of West Bengal). Inspired by her grandmother’s style and grandeur, her silhouettes are fuss-free, featuring boxy jackets worn with sarees alongside A-line dresses paired with cropped jackets.