AGHA–Curator–JD Annual Design Awards 2019 | Fashion Design
“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.”
—- ARTHUR ASHE —-
Designer Asha Kuttan Paniker’s collection Agha which means continuous tradition, drew its inspiration from Goa and its kunbi tribe. The collection lays emphasis on the weave in handloom, and the subtle touch of jewellery in the embroidery, with a mix of natural colours and natural dyes. The designer has laid emphasis on the prints and patterns.
The checkered sarees of the kunbi tribe have long been the authentic outfit for their women, worn during auspicious occasions and have been offered as gifts to the goddesses. Although, the sarees are made from 100 % cotton, the designer chose linen as the fabric for the collection as it gives a rich feel, is lighter, and more breathable and allows passage of air, due to its weave, be it for working women or for an evening party. Whereas the jackets/blouses and tops which were created for the collection, were made of 100 % cotton.
The checkered pattern present in the kunbi sarees varies in size, to represent the different communities and to distinguish one from the other. The designer created the garments keeping the essence of the checkered pattern that is associated with authentic kunbi sarees, as symmetric as possible. The women of kunbi tribe have been known to decorate themselves with coins in their jewellery and hence, the designer also used copper coins as embellishments for the collection.
The kunbi sarees are weaved in handloom and the designer through her collection, wanted to showcase this legacy by giving it a modern twist.