To be honest, when it comes to fashion you may not be too eager to wear your mom’s old cowl pants and off the shoulder, peasant tops straight out of the 70s with their tweeds and pinstripes. But somehow you will catch yourself running your hand through your grandmother’s beautifully handcrafted silk sarees. Things like that! are considered to be super classy and vintage. And in case you do not prefer wearing sarees often, the very idea of upcycling that gorgeous saree into an elegant evening dress is surely overwhelming. Yet, until recently, wearing handlooms was thought to be “uncool” and “non-trendy”. In case you were a Khadi-loving person, no one would stop joke-tagging you as some activist or a politician and carrying a jute tote bag would be an add on completing the entire look. Result of which, the handloom sector declined. Sales dropped. And artisans turned to other money-spinning professions. It seemed like this sector was doomed to a downward slide until the fashion industry stepped into this vacuum.
Upcycling is the haute new drift that has hit the shore of the Indian fashion-scape. Upcycling means using some old or discarded or vintage pieces of clothing and transforming them into something which is better than its original by design and value additions.
Heavily-embellished bridal wear too are going under the fashion needles. New-age brides have sentiments attachment to the artistic pieces passed on by their mothers and grandmothers. They uphold to them by upcycling it. Bridal wear is one of the biggest drivers of the Indian fashion industry.
With leading fashion designers like – Ritu Kumar, who started a line of clothing known as ‘The Revivalist’. The premise of this clothing line is to resurrect traditional Indian crafts and integrate them into mainstream fashion. David Abraham and Rakesh Thakore their lines of sarees and kurtis, and drapes are contemporary and edgy, making them the perfect examples of fusion. Who knew recycled clothing could be so stylish?