Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 2, Issue 45, Tuesday May 17, 2005




Style Files

By Maheen Khan Fashion designer, Mayasir

Q. Some of the major fashion events have taken place over the past few weeks showing the styles for the next season. Especially in the subcontinent, Lakme Fashion Week is seen as an important directional event for the region. Could you highlight the main fashion trends?

A. There are many aspects and facets of such showing across the globe. In most cases such shows reflect the markets for which the lines are developed. In most cases lines are developed with target customers in mind. Globalisation of market is making and setting trends that cross continents. With the use of visual and electronic media styles, shapes, trimmings and colours are picked up around the world almost at the same time.

This season:
Juicy colours in mango, citrus yellow, melon pink, and kamranga greens are in fashion. The colours are clean and fresh, clearly showing change with warm supple tones and hues instead of the cool candy pinks of the last season.

Green is the new pink, although I don't know how well it will be accepted. The popular shades are olive, sea green, lime and so on. Greens are also being used as accent colours. For example you can still continue to wear your coral pink dress but now use green accessories as belt, shoe, hair and jewellery.

Stripes are the biggest pattern out this season, big or small, bold or fine, even or uneven. Stripes never looked better, but not left just on their own instead when they are used with solids in moderation they stand out. You can also use stripes in your home furnishings. Polka dots are also back as a significant surface pattern. Bigger polkas are looking refreshingly good.

Feminine ruched applications on blouses, skirts, capri and bias asymmetrical layered dresses have probably come back in fashion. Drawstrings to create interest on styles bring to light a seventies inspiration, soft rounded shapes and flares are styles to look for in garments. Pockets are also an important element especially on trousers.

Clothes can take on complete new dimension this season. Gypsy chic is clearly the trend of the moment. Let me elaborate on this by giving an example. Lets say a light T-shirt is worn under a blouse, which can be put under a sleeveless jacket, wrap the waist with a wide belt, pair them with a flared bias skirt. Voila it can turn into a great style for today. The showings suggest that bold accessories in hoop earring, wide bangles, soft bags in large or small utility sizes are happening and wedge heel shoes are the cutting edge style for spring. One needs to look at trends, but really you must decide on your own style, and pick up lines that best suits you.

I would like to know a few fashion tips for pregnant women. What looks good on them? What sort of fabric they should wear? Where I can find outfits made especially for pregnant women? If there are any added tips please feel free to write them for me. Hope to hear from you soon.
Thank you.

Mother's to be require special attention. Looking good is very important for a pregnant person. Comfort is vital. In Dhaka light cotton fabrics are good. There are many different kinds of cotton fabrics available in the local market. Voile, addi, and plain cotton weaves, which are slightly heavier are also acceptable. Plain solid colors can be very dull some time so one can pep up the pattern by using checks, stripes or prints. I suppose I am not aware of stores that cater to maternity garments, although there are many places that offer plus sizes. But one should not think they are the same. The vast majority of women during pregnancy only gain weight around the abdomen with some more distributed around the body and chest area. The shoulders, sleeve length, body length will essentially remain the same. A very good shape for a maternity outfit would be a v-neck, with a umpire waist, short sleeves, a bias cut lower body with flared hem lines that open up for the baby.

Dear Maheen Khan
I need some advice and being a top fashion designer of the country I think you would be the right person to give it. I am a 26 year old male. I just got out of the university and started applying for jobs. I have an interview with a major multinational company. I would like to look good, smart and sophisticated for the interview. I am 5feet 8 inches tall. My skin color is almost fair and I am slim. I am willing to spend on my outfit as I will be giving interviews regularly till I get a good job. Can you please suggest the perfect outfit, the right color and fabric for it and where I can make them? Thank you.

It is important to look professional when you go for your interview. It does reflect great attitude, personality and in general personal hygiene.

Colours are very important. Neutral colours, in beige, stone, taupe, coffee xand so on. Suits are very good, but you could also wear jackets with trousers in complimenting colors, rather than in a contrast color. For example wear a beige jacket with a white trousers. For summer interview wear linen. Stripes are the biggest pattern this season, wear it on your shirt in subtle colors, wear with cufflinks. Your ties should not be loud but rather blend in well with your ensemble. Shoes, belts, filers or attaché cases should not look brand new but rather well used. As a formal wear your shoes should look sleek not oversized and bulky. Get a smart hair cut. Good luck.

Hello Khan
I used to be a school teacher. And you must know that teachers have to wear very normal and sober outfits, in a word very boring outfits. As I am no longer a teacher, I would like to bring some changes in my outfit and look.

But I have lost touch with shopping malls. Can you please suggest what is in style these days. What sort of kamiz, cuts or colour. I am 32 and not too chubby or not too slim. Please help me.

I see that you are bored with your look. Professions and environments dictate certain styles and at times it is just refreshing and rejuvenating to change. There are loads of styles that are current right now. It all depends on your personal taste. Mid length kameez with tapered trousers or short lengths with patiala salwers, short kurtas with churidars. If you have a medium figure all these styles will probably work for you. Use light cotton fabrics this summer in solids, white is the most important color, paired with bright contrast bottoms. The colors this summer will be shades of green, pink, and the neutrals played up with vibrant shades. This is a wonderful whimsical combination. I would highly recommend interesting doppattas in texture and weaves as an accessory. I think most shops that deal in handloom should have interesting accessories that you could play, mix and match.

By The Way

Removing eye make up, the easy way

Eye make-up removers can be a pain, especially the kind that tends to dry out the skin! Why not try something home-made for a change? Mix one tbs castor oil, one tbs light olive oil and two tsp corn oil. Apply with tissue or cotton ball around the eyes.



By Iffat Nawaz

To you America: to you and all your naked corners

I missed you, so I went and got some ice cream between Gulshan One and Two…the many flavors confused me. I looked blankly at all of them when I was in you, you made my choices so much easier, and perhaps that's what happens when you have too many options, you only go for the clichés. I picked something called Mandarin Madness, something that I thought would taste like a sherbet and it did…and I finished my cup and resisted a second serving. I still missed you when I walked out of the fully lighted, awesomely decorated ice cream shop, named after something unoriginal, something stolen from you, something you take for granted and here we cherish it like a middle class luxury…

I went and sat in the roof of some now happening restaurant. From that high up (which is not high at all) you do feel a certain high, an illusion with the hookkah that you smoke and the barely edible buffet that sits around as décor, I sat and reminisced, I missed you. With small and long puffs I looked far up at the sky, the bugs that constantly died one after another attracted and killed by the floodlight gave a great back ground beat to the instrumentals that played as forceful entertainment. I, acting like a modern jomidar's one of four wives sat with my eyes closed. There were no tears…but I missed you.

Did you hear how we can find almost all your odds and ends here, all you are now is a price, an estimated cost, maybe not affordable by all, but definitely by some. It's so hard to miss you here, that's why you are everywhere I look, maybe not as a whole, but your fragments are in every place, on the faces of the common people, on the tunes of cell phones, as a facial scrub and even as cotton balls…you are everywhere, yet I still try my hardest to miss you…

I don't miss you when yet another fancy joint opens up and we all rush there to eat over priced food. I don't miss you when the flower girls in the street corners beg me to buy a mala that you will never get to smell, I don't miss you when I walk through streets or when my rickshaw drops me in the middle of no where claiming he can not go any further due to new traffic rules, I don't miss you when the waiters of innovative lounges speak in perfect English and forgets to serve a knife with the fork…

I do miss you when the chauffeur abruptly breaks for unknown reasons, I miss you when Moushumi Bhowmik sings about missing you and missing me and missing herself in her lost world of tunes. I do miss you when I don't find a yellow cab and the black ones are now called blue but are painted green. I miss you when traffic jams become my time of meditation, and the unwanted sweats become my only daily result of fake workouts.

You have proven to me that when life lacks mystery and plays the false role of being an open book you will not be the one that pops up with a surprise, you will stand far yet be the unused comfort, an escape, a forever known option. And I will miss you the way I miss everything that's unnecessary, everything that's could-have-been-but-shouldn't-have, I will miss you because life does go on…


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