After months of obscure winter days and dressing in layers of clothing, we wait in eager anticipation for summer jaunts to the beach, draped in light breezy cotton clothing adorned with prints that boast nomadic worldly inspiration. For textiles collectors with an eclectic taste, shopping for indigenous and hand woven natural fabrics in Asia is a must do adventure. In this issue Bijoux Closet explores the markets and fabrics of Asia where weavers discovered how to make intricate patterns with hand-spun yarns and natural color fast dyes centuries ago. With so much variety, putting outfits together by mixing fabrics and patterns becomes a serious occupation for women who regularly scour the fabric shops.
Cotton fabric is very popular in tropical countries due to its breathable nature. Knowing how fabrics are constructed allows us to appreciate the skill and mastery of artisans who produce one-of-a-kind-pieces that end up in our wardrobe.
Indigo-dyed cottons, Ikat, Block print, Tie-dye and “Ajrak” print fabrics all tell an artisanal story of designs and processes that are rooted in traditional printing and dyeing techniques.
Among the cotton fabrics Khadi is a simple 100 percent natural hand spun cloth.The interlacing of threads provides maximum passage of air to the body creating a cooling effect, making Khadi an ideal summer wear.
Our first stop for textile shopping was Karachi where we visited two of the most popular places for cotton fabric.
To purchase Khadi cotton fabric a visit to its namesake store in Karachi is a must. Khaadi first made its name specializing in hand-loomed Khadi fabric for “Kurtas” (tunics). Established with the intent of reviving the age old heritage of hand spun fabrics, the store has quintessentially earthy wooden interiors and is packed with eager customers on any given day. Vibrant printed fabric hangs invitingly on wooden racks while the home interior line emulate the vivacious prints and traditional patterns that defined the khaadi brand.
A visit to atelier KOEL is also a must for textile enthusiasts. KOEL not only delights the visitors with a treasure trove of block printed fabrics, hand spun yarns and "Ajrak" prints, but provides an unexpected retreat with a tranquil spa like environment. KOEL wad established by its founder Noorjehan Bilgrami with a vision of reviving the dying art of hand block printing and to re-introduce fabric produced from hand looms.
Visitors enter into an open space with its calming aqua features, Frangipani trees, white washed seating and simple architecture that brings a feeling of serenity to its visitors. The KOEL enclave is also home to a cafe and exhibition space.
With so much variety it is difficult to be satisfied with just a few pieces and if you don't keep your shopping under control chances are you will return with a suitcase filled only with beautiful fabrics.
One of the most exciting things on every bride's wedding to-do list is to figure out the gifts for her bridesmaids. It is probably smart planning to think ahead of time about getting something special for your friends who will rally around you, spend endless hours helping you choose your gown and flowers, organizing parties and be there for you on your special day looking after all the little details to make this day as perfect as possible!
One way to show your appreciation to the bridesmaids for their patience,creativity and endless cheer would be to select individual gifts matching their personalities and preferences. It is hard to select gifts that will meet everyone's liking and since bridesmaids don’t have registries, you sure could use some inspiration to help get this task off your long to-do list!
An important point to consider is deciding on the type of gift. Would like to give gifts that your bridesmaids would simply keep aside as mementos or gifts that they can use everyday. A pair of crystal earrings, bracelet or a necklace will make a great finishing piece for your bridesmaid dresses and something that they can use on several occasions. You can also customize such gifts by putting them in a keepsake box with a group photograph from the bridal shower to make it into a precious memento as well.
A card case, a journal or a wallet are all great gift ideas to give something thoughtful yet practical. Shop our carefully curated bridesmaid collection to find the perfect bridesmaid gift to thank your girlfriends for being part of your wedding.
It is the end of February and you are already planning a getaway to shrug off the cold weather and brrr, chilly days! Whether you are dreaming about an artsy weekend or a few days relaxing by the beach, wardrobe changes and packing essentials will be on your mind. What you pack depends on your destination, however, the key to planning your wardrobe pieces for your compact getaway lies in selecting one or two basic colors and accessorizing around these colors. Step into spring by exploring our getaway fashion mood boards below.
Shades of pink bring vibrant energy and are great to shrug off the winter blues.
Dreaming of summer? Step into the tranquil marine hues with stripes and chevron prints. Marine can be easily coordinated with beige, white and lemon yellow colors.
If you are an art aficionado getting ready for your next adventure go with graphic scarves mixing neon and grey shades. Neon yellow lifts the dullness of grey and charcoal. Go with tribal and graphic accessories to show off your artsy side for a visit to museums or galleries .
This year we look to past issues of vogue as well as iconic pieces of vintage costume jewelry for inspiration. Carefully sculpted and executed jewelry designs in gold tone were introduced by couture houses in the past to finish an outfit. In these days of Avant garde, chic layering pieces of gold tone jewelry with casual outfits such as white shirt and denim is common and not just confined to formal wear. You can pair high shine cuffs and statement necklaces in gold with dark denim and heels for an edgy empress look or layer gold bracelets for an amped up glam effect with minimal outfits. In winter accent the neckline with a bold collar necklace or layer with gold necklaces of varying lengths to bring your sweater to life.
For major impact, look for high quality statement pieces of jewelry. If you are wondering what constitutes high quality investment pieces of jewelry then look for well crafted sturdy pieces with hefty chains and carefully executed details. Chrisitian Dior guides us about jewelry with a statement that the quality of stones, the design of the jewel and the perfection of workmanship are much more important and that heavy gilt jewelry gives a nice, bright richness to the clothes. There are many contemporary designers who create high quality innovative luxury costume jewelry that will be worth the investment but will not require you winning the lottery or end up consuming your year-end bonus.
Have a go at creating your glam look by pairing solid color outfits whether dressy or casual with unique gold-tone bijoux for a bold statement and have fun!
Chilly breeze in fall puts shopping for warm woollies and cosy layers at the top of our to do list. This year maxi scarves held at the waist by knotted belts and bold blanket style wraps took center stage at fall 2015 runways making them the "IT" accessory.
Warm scarves and chunky wraps are a staple wardrobe accessory particularly for those who enjoy a leisurely stroll along the lakeshore or waterfront, visiting festive bazars or spending a laid back evening by the beach.
If you are daunted by the outdoors and dullness in winter, here are some tips for staying stylishly warm using woolly textiles as inspiration for all your cold weather escapes.
Bold Prints and Colors
Make a fabulous style statement with bold prints and deep hues to pop your solid color outfits.
Create a Wild West cowgirl bandana vibe with triangular scarves. This style will keep your neck and upper chest warm leaving your arms free for selfies!
The Maxi Scarf Runway Trend
Maxi scarves created a huge buzz when designers around the world showcased the look on runways for fall 2015. Add a dose of runway to your look with wide blanket style scarves slung loosely on one side or held in place by a belt, a style popularized by Burberry Prorsum and Etro.
Choose natural fibres such as pashmina, cashmere or soft wool over synthetic so that your skin can breathe and be free of allergies.
This year TIFF celebrated its 40th anniversary with a 10 day festival starting from September 10. Tiff kicked off in 1976 with the name “Festival of Festivals” and has become a huge success since then. Obviously, fashion plays a big role in this event where people travel from all the over the world to attend as well as the movies that start fashion trends and create iconic looks remembered decades later. Fashion makes a movie story compelling by speaking volumes about its characters. It conveys a sense of place and time revealing lifestyles and identity of the characters visually.