4 posts tagged "Saloni Lodha"
Last night, designer Saloni Lodha threw a party to celebrate the launch of Nomadic Interlude, David Dunan’s book of photographs of the Spring ’13 Saloni collection, as worn by Christina Kruse. Dunan, Lodha, and Kruse were accompanied on their shoot in Morocco by filmmaker Ruth Hogben, who made a moody film featuring the collection. Here, Style.com debuts Hogben’s video online.
“I spent all morning buying flowers,” Saloni Lodha said at bit breathlessly at her debut London fashion week presentation. Said exotic flora were there to pretty up the classical masculinity of the Map Room at the Royal Geographical Society, where the decor runs to dark wooden map chests, portraits of African explorers, and a single, glorious seventeenth-century map that covered an entire wall. But the modified setting made perfect sense once models began to saunter out in Lodha’s Spring collection.
“I took the African body-painting rituals and ikat block prints and hand-painting to create a mélange of prints that all sort of sit together,” she explained. “But it’s all very wearable.” Indeed it was. Her easy, draped silk jersey dresses in swirling prints were served controlled and ladylike doses of embellishment in ruffles delicately edged in beads and waistbands embellished with woven raffia and copper bits. Smart little cardigans were dotted with little twists or raffia fringe or tassels of coral beading.
Transforming faraway exotica for a city girl is something Lodha’s done since she launched her collection five seasons ago and had it immediately snapped up by Harvey Nichols. (It’s now sold at Browns in London and The Webster in Miami, among others, and she’s hoping to find a New York stockist.) The cultural exchange of clothing all sourced and produced in India from Jaipur to Bangalore mirrors Lodha’s own path—Bombay native to cool London lass. And next season, she’ll be launching costume jewelry in the same vein, all made by Indian artisans but with faux stones and designs that Lodha’s Brit-girl friends like Poppy Delevingne and Charlotte Dellal should love.
I’m a big believer in first impressions, which is probably why I’m so excited about Saloni Lodha and her Saloni collection’s big debut here in New York next week. The first time I laid eyes on Lodha was during a Fendi-sponsored Beth Ditto performance in Paris last season; Ditto was writhing on the dance floor and Saloni was dancing on a booth. My second experience, which proved she can produce while she parties (which I always find impressive), came when Emma Watson was in New York on her Harry Potter press junket and told me about an adorable flirty red dress with big gold buttons she wore on the Today show. Turns out it was the Alexia dress by Saloni. “I didn’t have the traditional fashion school route to fashion,” Saloni explains now. “So I like the different perspective I have on it all.” Saloni’s education began in graphic design, which she studied while growing up in India. After a move to Hong Kong in 2002, she started piecing together one-off designs. In 2004, she decided to go full throttle into fashion, enrolling at Central Saint Martins in London to, in her words, “learn pattern making and couture hand sewing.” She says she was so taken by the city’s energy and creativity she set up shop there, launching a label “with my own signature style of drawing from my Indian heritage and focusing on a modern, romantic silhouette.” For Spring 2010, which will be shown on Wednesday, September 9, at 142 W. 36th St. from 4 to 7 p.m., Saloni looked to The Adventures of Hamza, a sixteenth-century Indian book version of an action story. “Hamza and his warriors wear structured and colorful draped costumes,” she explains. “The Saloni woman is a touch adventurous, but she’s not girly!” For more New York fashion week news, click here.