Fusion was once a word whose usage depended on the amount of attention students
paid to their chemistry test-books. Not so anymore. Today you find it in music
albums and documentaries, veejays and reviewers mouth it as if they were born
to do so, and the fashion world, of course, seems to consider it private property.
Many a dress designer has hit the jackpot using fusion fundas, themes and colors,
and it seems as if it will be a long time before we hear the last of it.
The Kolkata-based Weaver's Studio, dedicated to the cause of promoting weavers'
wares across the world (they've even been to Paris!), is, in collaboration with
also in Begumpet, holding an exhibition of saris and salwars. All the fabrics
and dyes used are natural, and the clothes have been handcrafted by weavers from
Bengal, Dhaka, Manipur, Orissa and other such places in the East.
The craftsmen specialize in the application of natural dyes, mud resist, block
printing, potato starch resist, clamp resist, wax batik, chubbier and discharge
painting techniques. Kantha work, kalamkari and tribal embroidery are some of
the works on display. So are Maheswaris, Tussars, Lucknowis and Vidharba saris.
(And even if most of that made no sense to you, do take heart and read on).
The fusion lies in their ability to lend a sense of modernity and style to traditional
textiles and weaves. The saris and salwars displayed in the exhibition look eminently
wearable, unlike traditional zari and heavy silks that rot for years in cupboards
and get to see the light of the day only on very special occasions.
Natural fibers, natural dyes and the hand-woven designs give the clothes an extremely
appealing look of simple elegance and comfort. The saris are priced between Rs.
1,450 and Rs. 6,000, and the salwar-suits between Rs. 1,250 and Rs. 5,000. This
exhibition is certainly not for those of us whose eyes are trained to check the
prices of every item on display, but if you've always been in that league (or
have just won a lottery), this might be just the place to visit.