Honouring the artisans who are mostly behind-the-scenes but key to lending a soul to artful collections that take hours and hours to master, Rahul Mishra’s recent showcase for the Haute Couture Week has put India on the global map once again. Titled ‘We the People,’ the artistry par excellence had the fashion world gushing over his use of signature 3D surface embellishments and attention to detail. With the intention of expanding creative boundaries every season, the lineup featured statement drapery, dresses blurring the line between avant garde and functional alongside a maximalist undercurrent that was surprisingly subtle for us viewers. Here are some of our favourite looks from his Paris Fall Couture Week 2023 Collection.
This collection brought to life Rahul’s imagination, in fabric. ‘We The People’ brought together artistic expression and age-old craft and technical prowess, making the collection that much more powerful. Gilded flowers, carefully embroidered motifs spotlighted Indian craftsmanship on a global stage.
Lending a touch of wonderment to this collection, which is primarily an ode to the people behind it, Rahul’s envisioned it to have imagination. The embroidered tiger is a flight of fancy, an embodiment of the worker’s mind who sees the fabric as an escapist fantasy, and in his mind, he’s transported to the Sunderbans or a dense forest somewhere.
Rahul Mishra’s work has always playfully melded fashion and art, We the People was no different. The silhouettes were big, the shoulders exaggerated- a recurring motif in the designer’s work. The emphasis on paying homage to the people continues, highlighting the slow handwork of the atelier. The fact that pieces took over three thousand hours to create is of significance, underlining the designer’s commitment to creating standout pieces.
Big on Beads
In a continuing commitment to be cognisant of the wastefulness accorded by fashion, the idea was to create pieces for an existing demand, instead of for the sake of producing. Featuring crisp silhouettes that make for versatile pieces, some of the pieces leaned towards a subdued and monotone palette. With elements such as gold beaded cape with padded shoulders, this was minimalist but opulent.
Never to shy away from big and glamorous, Rahul Mishra added the haute to couture with a tulle cape embellished with sequinned petals that had the front row suitably impressed.