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2006's most colourful newcomer," Manish Arora is the Bete Noir of Bollywood fashion. His label Manish Arora Fish Fry is a wildly wacky, recklessly riotous amalgamation inspired by meditating Sadhus, Indian posters, Mughal motifs, mythological icons, snowfall, Varanasi, London, Christmas, hearts, angels, forests, pearls, lotus, animals, mountains, Red Riding Hood… Like a paint factory exploded, Manish's daring designs were splashed across magazines and newspapers including American Vogue, HELLO, French Elle, Elle Décor Italy, Collezione Italy, Conde Nast Traveller, New York Times, Daily Telegraph, etc etc. with headlines, “Manish unleashed 'Bollywood' visions…” Awarded the “Most Creative Student” title at graduation and swiftly after the “Most Original Collection” at the Young Asian Designer's Competition” in Jakarta, Manish Arora declined an offer from the editor of French Vogue to join them as stylist to explore instead the potential of fashion in India. And an explosion of shapes, patterns, colours is what he came up with. Manish has since won Best Women's Prêt Designer at the first ever Indian Fashion Awards'2004 in Mumbai, Designer's Choice for Best Collection (Miami Fashion Week 2005) whilst Elle India declared him the best Indian designer. Following in his wake are young designers Falguni and Shane Peacock whose deliciously exotic East-West fusion clothing flash crystals, swarovskis, sequins, which the Japanese market – so far obsessed with European and American labels – believes will soon be the hottest fashion. Sabyasachi Mukherjee, Aki Narula, Gauri and Nainika, Rohit Bal, Hemant Trivedi, Neeta Lulla… the onslaught is endless. Terms like zardozi, badla, aari, and dabka have invaded western fashion vocabulary. Move over Mr Lagerfield. Every dog has his day. And fashion gurus predict an Indian summer on the international catwalks… ••• Devanshi Mody
All images Ian Gillett
Destination: Moscow With the rise of Moscow's own fashion scene it's possible London’s rich Russians will be head ing back to shop. After the label frenzy of the 1990’s when Russian fashionistas exhibited a slavish devotion to Western trends a more matu re attitude is developing. And with it the conf idence to embrace home grown talent such as Daria Razumikhina. Her Razu Mikhina ‘post-folk’ collections transform traditional Russian materials – lace, ribbons and braid s–a approach she describes as “ethno futurism”. www.razumikhina.com
Sydney A sun city, a fun city – endless blue sky and a fair few adherents to the cult of the body beautiful. All very nice but rarely do these qualities add up to a sophisticated fashion capital. There is, however, a little spice and zest to cut throug h the sweetness, designers of Asian origin in partic ular are proving adept at blending elements of their herita ge with a wholesome Aussie aesthetic. Born in Kyoto , Japan, Akira Isogawa mastered this art years ago and the next generation of Australian designers – such as top graduate Amy Yong – look set to continue the trend. www.akira.com.au
a easy to view China as Destination: Shanghai It’s dismiss it’s citizens erpower and
manufacturing sup in the do so would be foolhardy creative potential but to rcial infrastructure to le comme extreme. With an enviab are making their ingboard a few designers use as a spr task even in modern an easy mark as individuals – not ething of an epiShanghai is proving som day China. it’s home to Wang e to find centre and it is no surpris China’s new wave of igner at the forefront of Wei, a des llery.com weiga fashion exports. www.wang