The pilot event in 2011 had lot of work and a huge team of experts and volunteers combined into putting together ‘All the Silk Yards of the Benarasi’ fashion show. And of course, an intrinsic part of the process are the designers. Without which, the show cannot take place!
In putting together their designs, we challenged all designers to be daring, unconventional and in all instances ‘push the envelope’ with their designs and the use of the Benarasi Silk. Here is a glimpse of their collections, and more about their aspirations, processes and inspirations.
For 2012-13, we are again pushing the boat, this time, the brief is sharper, smarter and geared to get the designers to really develop innovative collections!
Karishma Shahani – India
Karishma Shahani is a 24-year-old designer from India. Karishma studied a BA in fashion design technology for Womenswear at the London College of Fashion in 2010. Her influences come from her cultural background. She also has a great interest in sustainability within design. Karishma loved the idea that her designs can quite literally touch the lives of the people they meet. Not only this but the fact that fashion has such a deep contextual relevance linking with world scenarios and situations. Her work plays heavily around colour and texture with influential designers such as Issey Miyake and Manish Arora. Her aspirations are to one day have her own design company.
Rahemur Rahman – UK
21-year old Rahemur is a menswear fashion student at Central Saint Martins School Of Design. He was brought up in London on the Isle Of Dogs where he was surrounded by the great hip-hop culture, which strongly flows through his of fashion sense. He loves the underground grime scene which is less apparent in industry, but far more unique. Everything rappers, lyricists and DJ’s do is celebrated within his works. He is fascinated by menswear tailoring, but also hugely by sportswear, which is quite a dominant trend in the hip-hop music industry. Designers such as Christopher Shannon, Martine Roseman and Aitor Throup inspire his design work. He is also a proud alumnus of The A Team Arts, achieving gold award and now continually mentors students there, to help nurture the upcoming generation.
Rukia Begum – UK
Rukia is a British Bangladeshi design student from London. She is currently studying on the BA surface design course at London College Of Communication. Rukia enjoys engaging in all areas of design within her discipline however, her ultimate interests lie in textile and fashion print. Rukia works with processes such as devore and discharge printing to manipulate fabric and create her desired effect. Designers such as Alexandra McQueen and Mathew Williamson inspire her, whose works also entail bold print and strong color. Rukia aspires to one day own her own company.
Shahnaz Plamondon (Kuhu) – Bangladesh
Shanaz Plamondon is a Bangladeshi designer known by the name of Kuhu Plamondom. She studied at the institute of fine arts in Dhaka Bangladesh. Kuhu has a MFA in drawing and painting. Her inspirations lie in the human form and its adornment. It was through figure drawing that Kuhu started fashion drawings. Kuhu works with a process called ‘dye painting’ to colour and treat a fabric, this can take months to achieve. She currently works on commission painting murals, but also designs textiles saris and other garments. Her inspirations come from designers such as Kenzo, Jean Paul Gaultier and Christian Lacroix. Fashion design is an extension of her creative fine art background and she considers her work as wearable art.
Caroline Drewes – Germany
Caroline is a BA Fashion graduate from Kingston University. She has worked for the likes of S. Oliver in Germany and interned for companies such as Preen and Comma. Caroline loves expressing her creativity through 3D experimentation with fabric and yarns. Caroline is currently working as a knitwear designer for Comma in her home country Germany.
Maryam Bilal – Pakistan
Maryam is a Pakistani designer who has graduated in textile design. Her interests’ lie in the shape and construction of a garment. Colour also plays a huge part in her work as it represents her background. Maryam was inspired to study fashion by her mother, when she was younger she would watch her mother constructing garments out of fabric which once appeared useless. Maryam has commissioned designs in Pakistan and is currently designing in the UK.
Fatima Guenzaouz – Morocco
Fatima was born in Morocco and her interest in design started when she was working with her dad who was specialised in western and Moroccan patterns. At the age of 14 she became confident to sketch client’s ideas and help them make the most of their fabric. When she moved to the UK she found Heba women’s project where she learnt pattern cutting and sewing techniques. She is interested in Islamic dress that fits the life style of women in western society. She has designed for a few Islamic shops, private clients and for Heba women Project. She enjoy working with fabrics and would like to have her own brand one day.
Tootli Rahman – Bangladesh
A pioneer in many fields, Tootli Rahman started her career over 27 years ago designing at her home running a small boutique which today is a brand name all over Bangladesh. Seven years ago, she launched her own label ‘By Deshi’ and since then, has mastered the art of fusion. Her exquisite designs promote the artists and weavers of Bangladesh and their many talents.
Tootli Rahman has recently taken her creativity to another level, collaborating with BCCB Bangladesh Cricket Control Board to host a cultural event with a fashion show that depicted the evolution of the nakshi kantha art form , during the recent Cricket World cup. The show was held at the historical Lalbagh Fort, and included a dance drama about the origin of nakshi kantha and a fashion show showcasing the current and future trend of the nakshi kantha stitching including a wedding gown.
For Tootli, new avenues keep opening up and she takes every opportunity to capture the right moment in promoting the culture and heritage of Bangladesh. Alongside Paraa, Tootli will use her talent to help showcase the Mirpuri Benarasi which Bangladesh is famous for with, not only western outfits but also a fusion of Bridal wear and a wedding gowns.
A.B. Walliuddin (Sujon) – Bangladesh
A. B. Walliuddin Ahmed Chawdhury is a Bangladeshi designer who graduated in 2004 from the national institute of fashion technology. His ultimate inspirations come from travel; he gains a great deal from experiencing different places and cultures. Ahmed’s designs are based on bringing an eastern, exotic detail to his western designs. Ahmed was involved in a lot of dance and other cultural activities in his youth and it was the work of Bibi Russell who inspired him to venture into fashion. He aspires to one day have his own fashion line.