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Nida Azwer promotes indigenous workmanship at PSFW 2015

By Nivedita
Lahore, April 20 (IANS)
Pakistani designer Nida Azwer always tries reviving traditional arts and crafts through her work, and her ‘Iznik Collection’ at PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week (PSFW) 2015 here was a step towards this. The designer feels that it is important to use age-old skills in a modern context as this pushes the overall fashion industry.

“We always try to highlight and promote indigenous artisanship and design elements within a modern context. People worldwide appreciate our traditional art and craft and so, it is my responsibility as a designer to promote it in the best way possible,” Azwer told IANS here.

“We are appreciated for our use of more classic and vintage design elements infused with traditional crafts such as tukri ka kaam, rilli, kantha, zardozi and miniature embroidery, worked into contemporary fashion, and we are proud of that,” she added.

It is noteworthy to say that everything made at Nida Azwer Atelier is handcrafted by artisans in Pakistan.

Drawing inspiration from Iznik and Persian ceramic patterns, Azwer’s collection at the ongoing PSFW 2015, being held April 18-21, under the brand name Atelier welcomed the summer season with florals and geometric elements displayed on designs. It also embraced the use of animal motifs such as birds and deer, as seen in Persian pottery.

There was focus on structured construction, quite visible on summer jackets, pants and tops along with flowy silhouettes.

The colour pallete saw hues of blue and teal with hints of saffron, and the ensembles were embellished with fine silk thread work, crystal and zardozi in luxe fabrics such as silks, cotton net and net.

Azwer has been designing and working in fashion under the aegis of her eponymous label since 2005. Her label includes a Pret a Porter line, a haute couture bridal line and a line of accessories.

The Nida Azwer Atelier has grown significantly since its inception, now boasting two standalone flagship boutiques; one in Lahore and the other in Karachi. Internationally, the brand is available across The Middle East, the US and Europe through select boutiques.

Asked if she plans to come to India ever and retail her clothes there, she was quick to respond: “Oh, why not? People in Pakistan are crazy about Indian designs as they find it fabulous so it will be a fresh change to sell in that market.

“I got invited to Kolkata twice for an event called Style File. Then we applied for fashion week and they took us for round one, but after that, the clothes couldn’t get there,” she added.

Recalling her tryst with India, she said: “I have been to Ahmedabad, Chennai and Kolkata, but I feel Delhi is the most fashionable city. Karachi and Mumbai are very similar in terms of dressing up. People in these cities are very laidback, chilled out and casual wherein Lahore and Delhi are very much into crisp and structured dressing.

(The writer’s trip is at the invitation of the Pakistan Fashion Design Council. Nivedita can be contacted at nivedita.s@ians.in.)

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