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THE AGE OF ANDROGYNY

Fashion
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Androgyny is blurring the lines of gender dressing and we’re loving it | This season’s major trend, it’s here to stay

When Alessandro Michele for Gucci made male models walk on the runway wearing pussy-bow blouses (Menswear Fall 2015) and female models strutted around in a green leather suit (RTW Fall 2015), one thing was clear-androgyny has arrived.

Androgyny is not a recent fad, but a trend simmering gradually under the layers of normcore (unpretentious, average looking clothing style, huge thing in 2014). As designer Rina Singh of EKA puts it, “Women don’t conform to standard body measurements. Everyone is unique, and would like to accentuate their personality as much as their physical aspects. Therefore, the trend has trickled down to a larger acceptability.” Whether it be skirts for men or bow-ties for women, cultural perceptions don’t define their style.

INDIAN ANDROGYNY | But what is Indian Androgyny all about? The trend takes its cue from the past, streamlining voluminous silhouettes in native handwoven textiles for the contemporary woman. The designer says, “Women like to wear broader shoulders these days. They would prefer wearing a jacket with a tunic and trousers instead of a tunic and pyjama.”

To keep up with the trend, a pair of brogues is a must-have.

Indian fashion is not new to the concept of androgynous dressing. Androgyny has always been in our roots. Hard to believe? Have a look at these

The evergreen Kurta (a long shirt worn by both the sexes) is a closet staple.
Bundi jackets (Nehru jackets) can be worn over a saree or kurta.
The lungis are the Indian version of unisex skirts.
Kedia tops (traditional shepherd shirt of Kutch) has become a high-fashion must-have.
Designer Anamika Khanna gave us dhoti-pants (Indian version of drop-crotch pants), inspired from the traditional men’s draped bottoms.
The bandhgala jacket has been revamped into longer shapes and minimal detailing for daywear.
Our Indian designers have embraced androgyny by featuring easy shapes, clean lines and longer silhouettes in body-skimming fabrics and minimal detailing. Designers like Dev R Nil, EKA by Rina Singh, Bodice by Ruchika Sachdeva, Abraham and Thakore are abiding by this minimalist and non-conformist approach of gender-neutral clothing.

Abraham and Thakore’s latest collection (AIFW 2015) reinvented classic Indian silhouettes in bold androgyny. They used India’s oldest recycling technique, kantha or sujani, on belted long shirts, slim-fitted trousers, and collared blouses in a color palette of brown, black & white. The silhouettes were inspired from menswear, yet had a distinctive feminine fluidity and grace. A perfect pick for your work-wear wardrobe!

EKA’s autumn-winter showcase at AIFW 2015 featured full-length tunics, linear jackets paired with pants or singular wraps. The collection reminded one of a vintage androgynous look, with emphasis on straight cut silhouettes and easy layering.

Here are a few tips that you can incorporate to bring androgyny in your closets 
Choose silhouettes in black and white. Black and White create a perfect contrast for androgynous dressing.
When choosing separates, it’s all about layering contrasting fits like slim fitted shapes with straight cuts. Rina Singh recommends, “Wear a boxy long shirt with a pair of rolled up denims, or wear a feminine kurta with a masculine cut jacket.”
Accentuate the best feature by camouflage Rina suggests, “like hide wide hips by emphasizing a small waist with high-waisted editors’ trousers worn with a peplum-shaped Nehru jacket.”



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