Short shift: Forget the little black dress, it’s time for some colour.
What to wear: Short dresses
How to wear it: Glamour is back, says Raakesh Agarvwal. “Kind of red carpet meets short party dresses.” He recommends short dresses, which are either backless or cut low in front. Many designers are now creating dresses inspired by corsetry. “When you have a really low back or neck, you need some construction on the inside,” Agarvwal says. “To stay warm, add an embellished jacket and opaque tights,” says Namrata Joshipura.
What to wear: Colour and more colour
How to wear it: Joshipura recommends short shift dresses with sequins, in colours such as tangerine and magenta. Agarvwal votes for colours such as champagne, black (“of course”) and Valentino’s trademark red. “After his retirement, people are realizing just how important that red is,” he says.
What to wear: Jumpsuits
How to wear it: Jumpsuits were seen on the runways at many fashion week shows. The adventurous can opt for jumpsuits as partywear. Wear them short or full-length and in bright hues such as citrus green or in satin, Joshipura says.
What to wear: Shimmer and shine
How to wear it: Satin is the fabric of the season, according to Joshipura and Gaurav Gupta. Wear short and fitted, or full-length dresses in the shiny fabric. Metallics are still in, but in a subtle way, says Gupta. “It’s nice to have hints of shimmer in the fabric itself, like in lurex.”
Knot up: You can’t go wrong with slim satin ties.
What to wear: Skinny all over
How to wear it: Silhouettes are still slim, says Arjun Khanna. “Skinny” is a prefix for trousers, jeans, ties, and jackets. Hemant Sagar also endorses the slim line. “A slim, black, two-button blazer with cigarette pants is perfect for a black-tie do.” “Strangely, for jeans, the opposite is also true—try wide-cut, almost flared jeans. Levi’s has a strong collection,” Khanna says.
What to wear: The bandhgala
How to wear it: They are not boxy or rugby-shouldered, but slim. Khanna says: “The cut is westernized and they are not made from ethnic fabrics. Black is great for formal dos, but try cream, or pastel blue for the day. Wear it with cream jodhpurs, skinny pants, or dark denims.”
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What to wear: Colour, of course
How to wear it: Mohan Neelakantan suggests mixing and matching—red trousers with a white shirt and a beige jacket, or a parrot green jacket with an all-black ensemble or a fuchsia tie with a navy suit.
What to wear: The all black look
How to wear it: Neelakantan’s tip to wearing all black: “Play with textures and shades. Mix a silk shirt with a cashmere jacket or a cotton shirt with a velvet waistcoat.”
What to wear: Sheen
Shine on: Patent leather shoes for men.
How to wear it: Gupta says satin-finished suitings give a subtle sheen. “Satin suits in silver, grey or navy are very chic,” says Neelakantan. And yes, he says, men can wear sequins; tone-on-tone or contrast sequins on the placket of shirts or side seams of trousers.
What to wear: Leather
How to wear it: To brave the winter, team a chocolate leather jacket with a brown turtleneck pullover and beige denims, says Sagar.
• “Now everyone is investing in accessories as they cost less than clothes, they give old outfits a new twist and you can keep recycling them,” says Shilpa Chavan.
• Your pieces should either be design oriented (made of inexpensive materials but high on creativity) or high in value, crafted with precious stones or metals, says Chavan. “Whether you pick a bag, headpiece or necklace, it should make a statement.”
• Stilettos are Agarvwal’s first choice, “but if you have to dance and can’t wear stilettos, try a hybrid shoe. It has a platform in front and a high heel, and every label is doing them”, he says.
• For more laid-back dressers, boots and gladiator sandals are a good choice. “It’s amazing how quickly trends trickle down from the ramp to the street these days,” says Gupta.
• Chavan says people are making an effort to wear accessories in a unique way. She’s working on a unisex line of badges made from a medley of photographs, toys, brocade and lace. To make your own—attach a few of your favourite, quirky bits and bobs together—and wear it on the lapel of a jacket or even with a formal garment.
Dance party: Hybrid shoes combine a platform and a stiletto.
• Instead of dresses with colour-blocking—using two or more solid colours to create sections or blocks—which was a trend a few seasons ago, Agarvwal says use accessories to achieve blocks of colour. “If you’re in a red dress, wear purple shoes. If you’re wearing a black dress, wear red or neon shoes and carry an orange clutch,” he says. And make sure your make-up is nude and hair is simple. Stay away from the all-black look, suggests Joshipura, recommending bags in fuchsia or neon green.
• Metallic shoes are still trendy for men, says Khanna. “Sports shoes are also still strong, from Converse, Puma or Adidas.” For Neelakantan, Sagar and Gupta, patent leather shoes do the trick, in dark blue, brown or white.