The fourth and final day of Colombo Fashion Week 2019 showcased a tale of grandeur and glamour at the Hilton Colombo, as the final six designers presented their summer season collections.
By Sashini Rodrigo
For this season, Sonali Dharmawardena took the art of batik to glamorous new heights with beautifully constructed gowns, sarongs and saris in vibrant patterns and trendy cuts.
The muted colour palette of black, white and cream made the pops of fuschia and gold accents stand out, while the nature-inspired prints were striking in their detailing. Structured ruffles, voluminous sleeves and billowing fabrics added flair while remaining timelessly elegant, and interesting choices like pairing saris with infinity scarves kept it contemporary.
For Indi Yapa Abeywardene, the ‘Next 15 - Attitude Collection’ is a step into the future for the INDI brand, while still keeping its passion for traditional local craft. Indi combined Beeralu and bobbin lace art with global fashion trends to create vibrant and stylish pieces with commercial appeal.
Colourful bohemian prints and mandalas were combined with white and block colours on silks and tulle, complemented by intricate beading and lace work.
The showstopper piece encapsulated the collection perfectly, as Miss World Sri Lanka for 2018 Nadia Gyi walked the runway in a full length A-line skirt with a stunning red bralette and matching lace-striped cape.
Next was Asanka de Mel’s LOVI Ceylon, showcasing their ‘Rise’ collection that drew inspiration from Lankan royalty and brought it to the modern age to create something that is “cosmopolitan but uniquely Sri Lankan”.
The trademark modern sarongs featured bold stripes and LOVI Ceylon branding in a variety of rich natural tones, and were paired with matching jackets, shirts and crop tops. The detailing had a Sri Lankan flavour to it, such as the simple embroidery and print depicting the Kandyan crown, the lotus prints and motifs, and the unique collar design.
Charini Suriyage’s drew her inspiration from Sri Lanka’s tourist appeal and its wildlife attractions to create a collection that encapsulates the luxurious aspect of both.
Batik prints of flowers and animal prints like snakeskin and leopard were paired with bold colours like red and black in a variety of silhouettes. Dramatic black ruffles were a recurring detail, forming sleeves or accentuating the lines of the piece. The combination of these elements gave ‘Ethereal Wildness’ the edgy yet sophisticated feel that the name suggests.
Inspired by the feeling of class and power that the colour black evokes, Fouzul Hameed’s ‘FH Design for Hameedia reinvented the classic ‘men in black’ look. A variety of fabrics, textures and shades of black were used to create carefully impeccably constructed pieces that gives a modern touch to a classic man for the ‘Evolution of Man by Fouzul Hameed’.
The suits featured eye-catching patterns like newspaper print on suit jackets as well as bold stripes and checks while the sheen of the tuxes projected elegance, accentuated with chains and elaborate buttons.
After much build up, Rajesh Pratap Singh closed the show with his collection that combined traditional Indian design aesthetics with international silhouettes.
The collection opened with all white pieces that were deceptive in their simplicity, and later ventured into deep reds, dull greens and blue hues. Gold was gradually incorporated, through tasteful jackets and delicate gold leaf prints.
His trademark attention to detail was spot on, from the intricate embroidery and prints of native flora and fauna, the crisp pintucks, the simple accessories of teashade sunglasses and headscarves, right down to the white shoes printed with colourful tropical birds.
After the show, the winner of the NEXT Award for the most high-potential designer that participated in the Emerging Designers program was awarded to Ayesh Wickramarathne. Overall, it was a fitting end to an exciting week packed with fashion that will no doubt influence this seasons trends.
(Pix by M.A. Pushpa Kumara)
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