I have always been in awe of the Cross ever since I was an adolescent for it’s style quotient; thanks to it being taken as a fodder for style of the rock,glam and punk looks of the ’80s. I grew up to rockstars like Madonna and George Michael iconising the Cross and raising it to a completely far away space than where it rightfully belonged to. The Cross started to appeal to nominal Christians and to non believers big time and all of them adorned it without ill intent. And so did I.The Cross was available and is still available in the most versatile designs and the raw materials used for making a Cross jewellery is quite interesting and tickles your creative appetite.
Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga, and Pope Francis share very little wardrobe-wise, apart from a very important , very trendy item: the Cross. It has featured on Popular celebrities and the collections of eminent designers like Versace and Dolce and Gabbana sans the religious relevance. Influential Internet style stars and bloggers have been wearing the Cross with attitude which has transcended into huge street styles that the mainstream retailers have to follow their leads as they always turn to such street styles for inspiration.
‘A crucifix is now just a fashion statement and has lost religious meaning’
Justin Welby says the purpose of wearing a cross has been lost
Archbishop of Canterbury says the sign has been trivialised
He said it was once a ‘badge of shame’ which is now popular
Christian leader made claims in a foreword of a new book
In celebrity circles and for some big-city fashionistas, inverted or horizontal crosses worn as jewelry or imprinted on clothing are turning heads . This trend has picked up from 2013 onwards and is still going strong. While some folks view the trend as anti-Christian, others say it’s just the opposite.Lady Gaga, Rihanna and Paris Jackson, daughter of the late Michael Jackson, have been photographed wearing inverted crosses on their clothing.
Even if there seems to be contrary opinions on the usage of the Cross as a fashion statement, it is going strong and is being used by believers and non believers for their own reasons. The Cross remains on the top as a fashion symbol. Salute to the Cross ; Style and otherwise for it’s magnanimous iconic status! Stay thus.
Courtesy: MailOnline, Virtue Online, Whitney Bauck(Writer)
Every monsoon Umbrellas go through a lot of change in fashion. It is really interesting to watch the new designs coming up on umbrellas. The children’s umbrellas have all kinds of cartoon and comic characters appearing. And also for little grown up girls , there are style and fashion illustrations appearing on them.
The first time I observed fashion on Umbrellas was when I travelled to Simla. I bought an umbrella with ruffles at the edges for my mom- in- law. She has a huge fetish for umbrellas which she displays proudly when she goes to the nearby temple every day. And during monsoon in kerala , you have to literally carry an umbrella all the time as you have no clue when the water will hit on you. So i guess for a land like Kerala , umbrella fashion is actually very interesting to watch.
Another place where to I travelled and observed umbrella fashion was Shanghai in China. I was really amused to see the varietal umbrellas that were spotted on the streets carried by everyone who could be going to office or just shopping. And the cutest part was, on a street if you spotted twenty umbrellas , all the twenty were different and had individual designs on them. And there were beautifully embroidered and printed ones on display with unusual designs.
And when I visited Beijing, as I went visiting some museums , I spotted women selling beautiful cutworked hand made umbrellas with wooden handles . The offwhite ones looked quite classy and could have been used as interesting lampshades which could be hung from the ceiling. They were made in cotton fabric and I wondered how much they would protect you from the sun leave alone rain. They looked more ornamental than utilitarian.
In the same context , I have to mention about the most amazing, colourful umbrellas done in fabric and entirely hand embroidered that I saw on the streets of Jaipur(India). Even those I felt were just ornamental but man! they could bring alive a drab room and could completely infuse excitement into a sober setting of a decor! I had brought all these back to be put at my Lifestyle store in cochin.
Even this monsoon I am so much in awe at the designs that have emerged in Umbrella fashion . They sure help in making a dull rainy day bright and cheerful and happy and….ooh la la!
All people from Kerala(India) know the allure of this drape called”Mundum Neriyathe” or MundumVeshti or “Settum Mundum”.Although this beautiful drape which consists of two pieces of fabric ; one which is draped around the lower torso called” Munde”and the other which goes as a drape around the lower and upper torso of a woman called the”Neriyathe”, typically belongs to the Hindu religion,now a days women from all religions wear it as it is looked upon as a traditional wear of Kerala.And during a main festival of Kerala ,”Onam”, all malayali women wear it to some function over the span of these ten days .And so we can actually say that it does not anymore belong to any religion but to the beautiful women of “God’s own country”!
This is such a beautiful dress and will actually appeal to anyone around the world who loves drapes as this is typically in a offwhite colour with Gold Zari border which looks extremely classy and has an aura of royalty. Any woman wearing this dress has a beauty of her own and looks complete with generally some gold jewellery and jasmine flowers on her hair and a red “bindi”(round spot) on her forehead.
The typical ” Mundum Neriyathe” comes in Off white and a flat gold Zari border called “Kasavu”, or the border will be in a flat colour or stripe called “Kara”and was always woven.But as in any other dress , this drape also has evolved over the ages and now a days come in all sorts of designs. The main change happens with the border mainly; it has gone from printed to embroidered to attached brocade borders. And the “Zari” also has changed from Gold to Silver or a mix of both. The body essentially remains off-white. But now a days, experiment is happening with the colour of the body too. And typically this drape is found in Cotton only ; but now a days it is done in Silk as well ,due to demand for a more expensive look for weddings.
This drape is used by a lot of Hindus for a part of their weddings. Both the traditional and modern styles of the mundum neryathum are depicted in the paintings of the Indian painter Raja Ravi Verma. In olden times,the attire was worn with the “Neriyathu”wrapped around the bust and also a blouse was not worn . Women of Kerala also wear the drape for a traditional folk dance called “ Kaikottikalli” and “Thiruvathirakali”.
I have always been fascinated with this drape from a very young age. The best image that has been stuck in my mind is of my mother wearing this drape in the mornings after her bath and with “Sindooram on her forehead on her hair parting ! She would even wear a basal leaf on her long hair which sort of completed the look( both practices being done by Hindu women of this region). When I woke up in the mornings ,it was such a positive image to see…..for me she looked so beautiful like a goddess of love! And yes she was one, in her nature too.
I grew up having this fascination for the drape and till date it is more alluring to me than a “sari”! I feel it is more sensual in look and very feminine too. It is extremely simple to drape it unlike the “Sari”! And thus convenient to move about as well as airy and breathable in the humid climate of Kerala.
When I talk about Mundum Neriyathe , another drape which comes to my mind and which has struck me is “Meghela Chador of Assam”. I came across this drape accidentally through a friend who was assamese and I saw her wearing this for my brother’s wedding. I was really surprised to see something so similar to our own drape of Kerala. Then I really got to know about this drape.There are two main pieces of cloth that are draped around the body. The bottom portion, draped from the waist downwards is called the mekhela (Assamese: মেখেলা). It is in the form of a sarong—very wide cylinder of cloth—that is folded into pleats to fit around the waist and tucked in. The folds are to the right, as opposed to the pleats in the Nivi style of the saree, which are folded to the left.The top portion of the two-piece dress, called the chador, is a long length of cloth that has one end tucked into the upper portion of the Mekhela and the rest draped over and around the rest of the body.
Ornamental designs on the Mekhela chadors are traditionally woven, never printed. Sometimes a woven pattern, called the pari is stitched along the sides of a chador, or along the bottom of a mekhela. These drapes come in Cotton as well silk traditionally but now a day are also produced as blends of Cotton and Silk with Synthetic Fabrics.
I saw a huge collection of these beautiful drapes in my friend’s collection. And there is even an antique one which her grandma had woven by herself and handed it down. And surprisingly for their weddings also just like in Kerala , they wear the traditional colour of off-white and Gold. I was flabbergasted; how can two regions so far away from each other have the same kind of drape and follow the same colour scheme? Such is life!…..I conclude.
For folks around the world who would like to see how a “Mundum Neriyathum ” is draped, here it is.
For folks who are interested to watch how a “Mekhala Chador” is worn, here it is.
Courtesy: Sameera Dipshikha Dowerah
Do Clothes regulate a relationship or does a relationship regulate clothes?
Tricky question nha?
It is indeed a question which is
- Sick etc etc when asked directly on your face.
In my part of the world, this question would be faced not so comfortably by many especially (I am sorry guys but) by the men because dressing up is almost always associated with women. And dressing up sexy is always and only associated with women. They claim there is no question of a man looking sexy after dressing up.Now…just in case some of you could be confused; I say sexy not in a literal sense though at times it could be too. When I use a word as “sexy”, I am trying to convey of a state of “looking really good by dressing up and accessorising”! It could also mean appealing! Anyway I personally don’t agree to this arguement as I fiercely defend the concept of men looking terribly good after wearing appropriate and stylish clothes. In fact some of them even look damn sexy …in the literal sense!
So coming back to the question….do clothes regulate a relationship?
I will speak from what I have seen around. Clothes do and has the power to regulate a relationship. The same person could be appealing or repulsive depending on the clothes she or he is wearing. Especially many a time a first impression is made based on the clothes that the person is wearing. Unconsciously , in our minds ,we feel attracted or abhorrent looking at the clothes the person is wearing. We will never admit it openly though. But nothing to worry…it’s just plain human! This way, clothes regulate if a relationship has to even begin or not!
Amusing…isn’t it? Truth!
Secondly ,in case a relationship begins, the wearing of certain kind of clothes regulate the relationship. If a girl is her innate self and sometimes wears certain sort of clothes which are considered sexy, there could be a shift in the way the guy looks at her and feels about her. He could be intimidated and even feel insecure taking her to certain places .
That does change the relationship in many ways. He could change the way he feels about her if she continues to dress the way she wants or feels happy about!
Now does a relationship regulate clothes ?
yes ,it could! If you were to have a relationship; be it a love relationship or a marriage, wouldn’t your partner influence the way you dress? Don’t we all change the way we dress to look good for our partners or spouses? We all do as we want to look appealing to our mates.So in case you were a girl who used to dress traditional and then realise that your partner loves western style of clothing, wouldn’t you try wearing such? You would defenitly give it a try. Same way for guys too.
Now how does it actually reflect on a person’s confidence and self esteem levels? If the partner is liberating in thought and encouraging to wear what the person likes or would like to experiment, it’s a great boost to your personality; whereas if your partner cripples or limits your horizons on the choice of your already existing style and wardrobe ,then it becomes highly critical as far as your confidence is concerned. Your sense of well being and pride nosedives and hits rock bottom. You would be forced to feel bad about who you are and even worse you are made to feel like an object and your intentions to wear the so called “sexy” clothes could also be questioned. Not to highlight that it’s always women who are targeted. Your morality could even be at stake! It takes absolute maturity and confidence for a guy to let her dress the way she fancies He has to primarily have total trust in the relationship.
Clothes form an integral part of any relationship; be it for good or bad! So for people like me for whom clothes are like part of your soul…..good luck for a kewwl partner….or your life and personality could be screwed for ever! And if you are a very flexible person and don’t mind changing your entire wardrobe and style for someone…well!so be it; life could be easy.But choose black or white. Grey isn’t a great place to live for a long time though Grey as opposed to what majority thinks , is a strong and independent colour and like Black and White can be mixed with any colour brilliantly. Never choose to live in the grey though!
Live happy. Live Fashion!
There seems to be a sudden enthusiasm in the extended earrings now a days .These are very similar to the ear cuffs. I live in one of the most fashionable and trend following cities in India (Mumbai).This is one of the hubs where fashion gets released first and then trickles down to the other cities.
When I check out stores and bazaars , there is a rush of these earrings. And they are quite captivating and alternate. When you wear one of these, that kind of becomes the highlight and you don’t have to wear anything else in your ears.
And also another tip for girls who would be using it is that it is best to put up your hair in some style than to let it loose for two reasons ; one being when you let your hair loose , it tends to get tangled with the earring. And secondly the earring tends to get covered and lost. The minimum that has to be done is pin-up one side of your hair or take a style where your ears are exposed totally.
When I see these earrings,I am reminded of my earrings what I wore as a bride. It was a typical “Jumkka” or “Jimkki”(which is a very popular earring in all of India). And there was an extension piece like a Peacock design which extended up to my ear lobes and had to be clipped there. These earrings have been there from olden times. And it has been a Classic from time immemorial. So it’s just that the new earrings that we use now are a new “Avatar” of an old design.
Amusingly there is also a collection of earrings that come as a single piece; in the sense only on one ear and nothing on the other. These are also severely attractive but the only thing I disagree on is that, there could have been a tiny piece for the other ear which will complete the whole dramatic look. Now, the other ear is lying vacant as there is only one earring and that kind of gives a little lost look. So what I suggest to women opting for these singular pieces is that just browse around and shop a tiny earring in the same colour scheme as the main one and team it. And voilà!…you have a killer look!
Do you get judged by the clothes that you wear?
All the time.
Who are you?
No one wants to know.
Your clothes speak… sweetheart!
You are only the clothes that you wear.
To a stranger.
So beware! What you wear….where.
No matter how liberated you are,
Choose wisely my dear,
For you are being judged every minute
By your second skin!
It’s not easy in my country, in many places, in societies, to wear what you just feel like. There is a culture, especially in my part of the world (Kerala, India). You are expected to confine to the limits of a diagram drawn by the society with the label “decent clothing”! If you dare step out, even a single step, you are tarnished, maybe for a lifetime even. You could lose everything; the minimum being your reputation which would have cost you a couple of years to build.
I blame none! The societal layout is such that it looks like we promote hypocrisy. The same folks who could wear clothes (daringly; that’s what they call you) which could show a little bit of skin , change their wardrobe entirely as they step into their native place(that includes me too; I admit). And it’s a known secret that we can and we may dress as we like, when we are on a holiday outside our state or living elsewhere.
Do I see this as obnoxious? Well! I am confused to answer. I want to say yes when I think rationally. The answer becomes all the more a sound yes when I think radically! It is especially so, because as a society, we are not so closed to showing a decent amount of skin. The woman actually looks mighty sensual wearing a sari (a stretch of fabric draped around the body). When a sari is adorned, the woman’s body is portrayed in an aesthetically sensual manner. This drape shows off ample amount of skin or helps to accentuate the most beautiful parts of the woman’s anatomy. But no one even bats an eyelid; leave alone speak filth about it, where as when it comes to switching over to western clothes, we do have a highly volatile situation here.
Why are we like this?
The only answer could be that when we are used to something by birth, we do not have a problem; whereas, when we are exposed to change, then we rebel, we revolt, we ridicule!
And we have a culture where in, we give respect (or so we claim) to elders. And one solid reason for dressing up moderately is also that we try not to offend our elders who are not exposed to or rather they are closed to anything different from what they have seen. And now if you ask me the same question, I would say “No”; I don’t think it is obnoxious for the simple reason that you don’t have to offend your culture and neither your elders. There is nothing wrong in being sensitive to the communities that we live in. There is nothing wrong in being respectful to the denizens around you. Why would you take the trouble to upset a chosen few when you know you can step out into the vast horizons of the world and wear the same clothes with no fear, no affront, and with élan, in a completely different , mature scenario which can endure it. It could be even that, the same clothes which are offensive in a space could get you appreciation in a different one. So, for me, it’s just a matter of letting go and dressing appropriately in the spaces where we are at a certain point of time.
You are judged my dear…. good or bad, depends; but you are always judged by what you wear!
Guys….you must have noticed ;anyway ,for all those who didn’t , that’s the same girl in all the images, wearing both Indian traditional and western clothes! And thank you all for not judging her, on her clothes!