Fashion show dazzles with sustainable twist
The Weavers Village Show, a sustainability-based fashion show held at Nisha Gandhi Auditorium, Kanakakunnu, Thiruvanathapuram, Kerala, under the aegis of handloom boutique Weaver’s Village and Kerala Olympic Association, won a spot in the India Book of Records. The Kerala Olympic Association had organized a 12-day-long Kerala Games 2022 Expo in the capital city to raise funds for enhancing infrastructure and training opportunities among underprivileged young athletes. The fashion show, held as part of the expo, won a record for having the maximum number of models in a sustainable fashion show, wherein the models wore sustainable handlooms, weaves and wedding designs depicting the theme – Weaves of India.
The record-winning fashion show featured more than 250 models, including transgenders, housewives, children, plus-size people, the elderly and differently-abled persons, apart from professionals from different walks of life. The show upheld a message of inclusivity in terms of colour, body type, gender and age. Creations of popular national and international fashion designers like Rajesh Pratap Singh, Payal Pratap, Urvashi Kaur, Jebin Johny, Santhosh Kumar, Abhini Sohan Roy, Sanjana John and others were part of the show choreographed by Dalu Krishnadas and Jude Felix.
According to show director, Sobha Viswanath, the event was an effort to break the existing taboo and stereotypes in the fashion industry. The record was an attempt to showcase the importance of sustainable fashion and our traditional handloom from a global perspective. We even had cancer survivors as our models. One of the showstoppers apart from actors Parvathy Jayaram and her daughter Malavika was Tiffany Brar, the visually challenged activist who won the Nari Shakthi award from the President of India recently.
The fashion show, which was attended by thousands of spectators, featured three rounds of handloom designs – Weaves of India, Handloom of Everyday and Wedding Collections. Sobha says the show was also an opportunity for amateur models to spend a day walking the ramp wearing designer clothes. It was also a tribute to weavers across our country, to create awareness about the usage of handloom in sustainable clothing. Apart from handlooms from Balaramapuram, fabric from other states was also included.
Prejish Nirbhaya, Director, Brandfell, a branding consultancy based in Thiruvananthapuram, said that there was no age, colour, caste, size or gender bar to the event. It was the biggest fashion event in the handloom sector, which actually changed the concept of modelling. The event was a fund-raiser to enhance training opportunities and infrastructure to shape talented athletes. Prejish said that it was his idea to claim a record under the India Book of Records.
Good old handloom is lending a helping hand to sports. The land of legendary athletes like P T Usha, Shiny Wilson, Anju Bobby George and K M Beena Mol, of late the state has been lagging in sports which in turn forced the government to float an event called Kerala Olympics this year. The aim is to groom and provide ample opportunities to train top-notch sportspersons. “We follow a triple bottom line– people, planet and profit. We gave a message that as casual wear we can don handloom every day to help the traditional weavers. It will also be in tune with Prime Minister Modi’s initiative ‘my handloom, my pride,” said Sobha.