Narresh Kukreja’s First Runway Presentation Was Inspired By A Saree On Netflix’s ‘Next In Fashion’ And It’s Stunning
Not being a fan of reality shows has its pros and cons; I do miss out on some delicious drama that these shows thrive on but get to keep my sanity and steer clear from gossip. While I have been pretty disciplined till now, to not fall prey to the temptation of binging these shows, there is one genre that I cannot resist…fashion. Shows like Project Runway, America’s Next Top Model and RuPaul’s Drag Race all have a fashion element to them, which is enough to claim my undivided attention. The reason why I love these shows is that they go behind-the-scenes of what goes when creating, styling and presenting a garment…something we wouldn’t otherwise get a peek at.
Another aspect of these shows that draw me in is the process that a fashion designer goes through while creating a look. We know that these artists source inspiration for their creations from literally anything and everything. Icelandic singer Björk’s infamous ‘swan dress’ was inspired by an actual swan that the designer, Marjan Pejoski, saw laying an egg! You get our drift, right?
It is fascinating to see people who are great at their craft take it to execution, and Netflix’s new show Next In Fashion promises to do just that. What’s even more exciting for me, as a viewer, is that they have on board one, and only, desi designer, whose presence in the lineup caused a tiny shriek at my end!
Narresh Kukreja, from the designer duo Shivan & Narresh, is part of the competitor group in the reality show that’s not pacing it out, it’s all guns blazing from the word go. I have only seen just the first episode (so no spoilers, please!) and already they had the contestants construct red carpet looks in under 2 days. Hosted by Queer Eye member, and the super adorable, Tan France and OG ‘IT’ fashion girl/designer Alexa Chung, the show has already brought out an impressive lineup and guest judges. Yet, the highlight of the episode, for me, was when Narresh started to explain his inspiration for the design he and his partner planned to work on…a saree!
Paired with Mexican designer Lorena Saravia, the team decided to combine their strengths of constructing dresses and picked the silhouette of a saree to design the gown after. Narresh elaborated on why it means so much to him by saying, “In India, you grew up with all these wonderful women looking so elegant in a saree on special occasions. [It is a style that is] diagonally cutting across a woman’s chest and looks so glamorous. So, we really want to make a one-shoulder gown that will have a slit right in the center of the bust”. The final look, as seen above, was a beautiful piece, with the judges complimenting the choice of print, the handiwork on the tiny details and overall aesthetic of the gown.
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As someone who’s familiar with the designer duo’s aesthetic, and have met them personally, I wasn’t surprised that Narresh would incorporate these elements in his creation. They are known for their OTT colour-blocked designs, that infuse many different prints without it looking too ‘busy’. Their distinctive quality to play with stacking prints is what gives them their edge and signature look, and I can’t wait to see what Narresh does on the show next!