Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home   |   Volume 7, Issue 04, Tuesday, January 24, 2012




The perfect suit

Choosing a perfect suit is one tough job indeed. To start with, the number of buttons might be a bit confusing to decide. Two-button suits are very trendy right now, whilst three-button suits are still in fashion. A one-button suit is less formal. It is also best for those with slimmer physiques. Of course, the more buttons you have, the less your shirt and tie can be seen.

A woollen suit breathes well and is very stylish. It is the fabric that mainly determines the price of the suit. When you wear a suit, the shirt should stick out an inch counting from the back of the collar.

Should you buy a suit off the shelves or a tailor-made one? Ideally, the latter is better, since you get to pick the particular fabric, design, etc. A perfect fit might be difficult to find.

When you are trying on suits off-the-rack, determining which size is your best fit can be tricky. The suit that is a good fit for won't be loose. It won't be very tight either, of course; but the point is, a suit, although should be comfortable, can feel very slightly constricting.

By M H Haider


Interiors for the next Generation:
Creative Furniture

Drik Gallery is exhibiting a show of creativity on wood, courtesy of Creative Furniture. This company, under the guidance of designer Rokonuzzaman Babu, has been providing comprehensive interior decoration solutions over the past decade for the next generation of homemakers.

“I specialise in working with small spaces which is what homes in Dhaka city are all about nowadays,” said Babu. “We work mainly with pine wood imported from Sweden and New Zealand because this wood is ideal for our weather, resisting infestation and bending.”


The furniture at the show are based on the central theme of decoration with functionality, something Babu said is essential for homes today. “It is wise to have furniture with multiple functions,” said Babu, “That is why we design crockery shelves to double as buffet places, clothing cupboards to double as dressing tables and a sitting space in the bedroom and such other innovations.”

Babu advised to keep furniture heights as low as possible to make rooms seem bigger. Another way to achieve the same result is to lift the furniture up and reveal more floor space. According to Babu, what spoils an interior is the inexperienced mixing of styles. “Most of us buy random items on a whim and then you end up placing a clay pot next to a crystal one. This spoils the beauty of both pieces and so you should decide if you are a clay person or a crystal person first and go from there.”

Babu thought prioritisation is the mantra of today's home keeping. With space limitations it is necessary for us all to decide if we want to invest the extra space on additional clothing, crockery or showpieces. Once we have that determined we should look at our furnishing requirements rather than the furnishing design; “The external designing of a furniture is easy, what's tricky is justifying every bit of space it occupies in a house,” Babu stated.

The room for youngsters at the show was of particular interest to many. Designed in what Babu calls an 'adda' style, it featured a low bed with two low chairs forming a semi circle and a low laptop table with a wooden, 'funky' book/CD shelf. “In designing for the young you need to keep in mind that they are still developing their tastes and so you need to keep it raw. Provide them with a dumping place, keep an irregular mirror -- all in all create a controlled chaos.”

The next generation of home owners and homemakers has a different set of ideologies. No longer is big considered better and shiny more sophisticated. Today people look for a simple, uncluttered house to complement their simple, uncluttered lifestyles. They want a house where they can walk in after a hard day's work and feel relaxed in, surrounded not by big and bulky regal furniture but rather by light, low tables and the sombre-coloured curtains. Even guests do not insist upon formality much more; when they walk into a house all they look for is cleanliness and most importantly a welcoming atmosphere. For more information please contact Mr Rokonuzzaman Babu at 01911340143.

By Raisaa Tashnova
Photo Courtesy: Creative Furniture


M is for magic

Munize Manzur

Time to pack my bags and move on. Move back, rather. But that implies returning to a state I had been in earlier. And although I may be returning to a country I was in two weeks ago, I'm certainly not returning to the same state.

If there's any one time, people change, it's during vacation. You take time off from the mundane and find it not so mundane. It's like wearing the same coat; getting comfy in it; knowing there's a rip in the hem or yellowing of the collar; and thinking, 'Lord, I could really do with a new coat.'

Then you wear it on a new street and stop at an unfamiliar sign. And while you're trying to figure out what the sign means, you notice the details of your coat. How the inseam is double-stitched and can take on some rough weather. How the elbows are padded inside with leather so when you fall you won't graze those dry vulnerable spots. Which is a good thing if you tend to wear your heart on your sleeve. And so, by the time you finally find your way home, you think: 'Hmm…I'll hang on to this old coat of mine after all.'

Some people go abroad and do all sorts of surgeries. Tummy tucks, teeth veneers, nose jobs, hair implants. Some buy the latest fashion in clothes, shoes and bags. 'Upgrade' themselves, you could say. I like the concept of it. I really do. But after cruising Oxford Street for a day, you realise what a slippery downward slope this upgrading business can be.

You plan to buy a pair of jeans because the last time you bought them was a decade ago but now you are faced with insane choices. Long & Lean, Skinny Tight, Boy Loose, Boot Cut, Hipster, Waist Clinched, etc. And if you should find a style you like, then you need to choose between indigo dyed, Fair-Trade, faded, jaded, slashed, re-stitched. Please! I just want a pair of jeans to wear with my white shirt. Is that too much to ask for? Since when did it get this difficult to update your closet?

Thus I take the easy way out and make vacationing more about 'rescaling'. Redoing the calibration of your mind and soul till they don't feel tilted anymore. Discover, rediscover, uncover, recover.

You get lost and find a quaint church and plonk yourself down on the steps to listen to the bells chiming. You hear a new song and can't stop humming it. You write verses in your moleskin journal with rhyme but no reason. You see seven types of ladybirds as you stoop over a leaf. You nap at 4:32 in the afternoon simply because you can. You see your son going gaga over a tiny stuffed toy and revel in the fact that he's still your baby. You hear your daughter trying on the British accent and pray she never loses the spirit of trying new things. And you hear voices in your head that thrill you, fill you, scare you, dare you, uplift you.

The other nice thing about vacationing is remembering the folks back home. Those who irk you, no longer feature. While the dear ones pop into your mind like happy bubbles. Another case of 'mind over matter'. You see someone smile which reminds you of a friend's smile. You smell fried fish; remember your Friday family lunches and look forward to swapping funny vacation stories with your loved ones. You buy a new pair of shoes and can't wait to show them to your best friend, the designated Shoe-Police.

And you write to them. Ramblings which you wouldn't normally write but now can't stop scribbling. Because you want to reach out and share all this with them. You go the distance so you can draw them closer to your heart.

Time has flown by and all items have been ticked off the itinerary. Yet, time also slowed down so I could breathe properly exhale stale thoughts, inhale fresh spirit.

In the Harry Potter movie, there is an hourglass where the sands of time fall according to whether one is having fun or not. I'm just a Muggle but I don't need such magical things. I've experienced the magic of vacations.


Reconstruction: cultural heritage and the making of contemporary fashion

Cultural heritage often forms the creative DNA of well known fashion designers. Designers draw on their own personal reference points such as religion, vernacular architecture, indigenous craft, cultural heritage and new technology; and sources of inspiration as abstract as migration, feelings of isolation, dislocation and fear.

This winter British Council is organizing an exhibition that celebrates the work of London-based fashion designers who skillfully distill elements of their past -- either personal moments or a collective cultural heritage -- to create clothes with a narrative.

Reconstruction, which started in Kazakhstan last year and is set to tour Russia, Uzbekistan, Pakistan and India alongside Bangladesh, is a snap-shot of the traditions and cultures of some of UK's leading fashion designers.

The designers' panel will comprise of UK-based designers Vivienne Westwood, Paul Smith, Osman Y, Marios S, Sophia K, Peter J, Hussein C and Bangladeshi designers Rubi Ghuznavi, Emdad Haque, Monjulika Chakma who will be showcasing their work at Reconstruction.

The exhibition, which will kick off on January 28, 2012, will continue till February 11, 2012 and will be accompanied by activities including a seminar on Global Trends in Fashion Exhibition and Bangladeshi Fashion from a Historical Perspective, a 2 day workshop on fashion journalism facilitated by fashion journalist Kristin Knox on 3 and 4 February, several talks and seminars with local designers and the stakeholders and a wrap-up catwalk to showcase creations from the featured Bangladeshi fashion designers will be held at the closing ceremony on 11 February.

-- LS Desk


We request all our event invitations, press releases and other forms of correspondence be sent to Raffat Binte Rashid, Editor, Star Lifestyle (7th Floor), 64-65 Kazi Nazrul Islam Avenue, Dhaka 1215. Email: lifestyleds@yahoo.com or raffat@thedailystar.net


home | Issues | The Daily Star Home

2012 The Daily Star