Meenakshi M Singh talks about the three looks she prefers

everyday style, fashion

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Whenever there is a program or event where I need to go on stage the first thing that strikes my mind is the question, “what should I wear?”. I feel that once the dress appropriate to the program is fixed the rest would fall into place smoothly. Though the façade doesn’t carry more weightage than the core, but it surely aids in boosting my confidence.
This was an award function where lots of eminent people were coming. Formal dressing looks good in such functions. Being a lazy saree dresser, I prefer wearing stitched dresses or suits making it easy to wear, travel and rush for the program. The milky ivory hues of this anarkali suit allured me
instantly when I saw it in a nearby boutique and ushered the boutique assistant for trial.
Fortunately, it fitted me perfectly without a single alteration and fitted the bill of my urgent requirement. It had a big organza dupatta which was seeming a big hassle as I prefer to keep my hands free, nothing to handle than the books, award, miscellaneous stuff. and which helps me to walk fast on stage etc. I asked to convert the dupatta into a sleeveless long jacket and the outcome was brilliant. This is a floor length anarkali with a dupatta converted into a sheer jacket/cape. I accessorized this look with a pearl necklace my husband brought from somewhere in South Africa, a blue bindi and a statement ring bought from Dilli Haat to complete the look.

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This look has a little story behind it. In my daughters’ school function, students performed on a song “Makeba “composed by Jain. The song influenced me and sounded quite cool to me. Inspired by Jain’s B&W look in the song on YouTube, I searched for a collared black and white dress. I am not a brand conscious person as the quality and the look matters to me
more than any label. I found this on a popular online site either Romwe or Shein costing remarkably less than Rs 1000. I didn’t mind that. White pumps, golden sunglasses, a multi-layered silver necklace, a pale pink sturdy handbag shopped from USA, a white stone ring bought for Rs.
100 from the stall outside Beatles café’ in Rishikesh and my smile completed the look for a lunch date at Impromptu café with my best friends.


Photo #3
This was clicked in City Palace of Udaipur during the winter vacations. This is a dress from “AND”, Anita Dongre’ special collection and the fit is awesome. I have worn this dress in summer without the leggings and jacket as well as in winters and it does brighten up my look. Wearing it with a jacket bought from an exhibition in Gurgaon, long black leather boots from H&M, and a LAVIE sling bag gifted by a friend on my birthday. Since hoops are in vogue these days, I wore big ones in silver from H&M realizing it later that almost 5 out of 10 girls were wearing hoops. Hoops were in fashion in 2005-2006 and again this trend bounced back. Since the dress has a pastel pink beaded neckline, necklace wasn’t required. Wearing “Relentless Red” lipstick from Mac and my smile again to reflect my happiness when I am a traveller.

(Meenakshi M Singh is an author, poet, a software professional, director of ShetheShakti – women empowerment centre and a mother. She is based in Gurgaon with her husband, raising herself with her daughters.)

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Author Harshali Singh decodes her fave looks

everyday style, fashion

If God asks me on judgement day, ‘Name your vice?’

I would unabashedly answer, ‘Buying sarees…’

That is how crazy in love I am with them. They are like a six yard comfort zone. Just wrap yourself around in it …pin …tuck and one is set for the day. I watched my mother wear one, as far back as I can remember so it is pulls at my heartstrings as I do the same.

From a Jeans and shirt kind of girl, marrying into a Sikh family meant the advent of the struggle with the Dupatta. Refusing to rest on my shoulders it chose instead to play truant with my heavy, top side. For several months it flipped and flopped as if taunting my inability to control its willfulness till I would fume and wrap it around my neck…noose like.

It was in my late twenties  that I found my comfort zone. Without feeling awkward, one day I donned the saree and empowered myself. I don’t know whether it was the saree or the confident tilt of my head but I realized that day that the saree was my best friend, never once judging my waxing and waving weight, wrapping me in its embrace with the same enthusiasm each time.

Slowly I found myself in its folds, experimented with fabric with colour with drape. I had found my style. Now the Satya Paul store staff can sense me a mile away. Masaba’s fusion of two distinct and natural fabrics fueled my love for the quirky. I still zealously guard the heavy silks of my trousseau.

Here, I drape a favorite Satya Paul from their Om collection.

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 This sense of understanding what I liked was freeing.

And then Marks and Spencer happened. There was finally a store that carried elegance and sizes that fit this unrepentant foodie who loves her curves. Pet peeve… brands that stalk only Small, Medium and Large sizes. May I just say, even to some of the Indian designers, there are women of this country who can afford to wear you and are above size 12 and equally well dressed. Get real.   

Wearing my M&S Size 14 body con dress proudly, as I walk the cobbled streets of Paris.

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Recently however I discovered the elegance of Indo Western attire. I am of course still in nascent experimental stages, extremely wary of anything that does not ‘fall right’ but I am trying my best to step out of my comfort zone.

This Anita Dongre long Jacket with trousers was what made me come full circle to my troubled relationship with suits.

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As did this traditional Patan Patola in the colour that defines me.

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(Harshali Singh is a New Delhi based Author, former member at the Consumer Forum, an academician, a teacher trainer, a trained Occupational Therapist, an avid reader and a passionate Painter. ‘A Window to her Dreams’, a contemporary Adult fiction was her first novel published by ‘Readomania’ in 2016. It is a series of eight books, called the ‘Haveli Series’. Her second book in this Series ‘The Anatomy of Choice’ has been launched in January 2019. Her poems are part of a woman centric bilingual anthology of poems called ‘She The Shakti’. She has also won the Write India 2018 chapter for the erudite author, Ms Chitra Devakaruni’s prompt. )

 

I think royal blue is my colour….

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Here’s what I wore to Gul Panag and Shruti Seth’s fabulous drinks and dinner evening to celebrate Festivelle some weeks ago.

The dress is a simple shift dress from AND by Anita Dongre, shifts are safe choices on them damned “I feel fat” days and when you know your waist is no longer the version that supports a fitted dress.

The bag is an old Guess I’d forgotten about and was languishing in the upper reaches of the wardrobe. In retrospect, a clutch would have been nicer, but I always have so much I need to carry in the bag, wallet, phone, charger, a lipper and a compact, and yes, my spectacles because I’m blind as a bat and don’t trust myself without my spectacles when night falls. I paired this with a rasta shopping find neckpiece from Lokhandwala market and blingiest pair of golden slides. Comfort uber alles, what say ladies? I find I’ve lost my patience to mince my way through the world wearing really high stilettoes. And I’ve finally made my peace with the fact that I’m going to be one of the tiniest people around if I don’t wear high heels. Perhaps this comes only with age and acceptance? What do you think?