Arjun Kapoor to headline Kunal Rawal’s inclusive collection ‘Dear Men’ during FDCI India Couture Week
Designer Kunal Rawal is a popular name in B-Town, having designed for several actors in recent years. The designer made his couture debut to celebrate his brand’s 15th anniversary with a big show during FDCI India Couture Week on Saturday. For the collection entitled “Dear Men”, the designer was inspired by the mix of cultural and traditional influences that prevail in India.
The collection caters to the full spectrum of celebrations from modern luxury to deeply rooted traditional wear. The designer has created a sartorial alchemy of ensembles that can be easily up or down, mixed or matched, or even worn to work.
Flamboyantly exuberant in an embellished tonal sherwani, actor Arjun Kapoor walked the ramp in the evening’s key piece, crafted with signature hemlines and adorned with polki buttons. The actor was cheered on by Malaika Arora who also wore a Kunal Rawal number – a bandhgala with a crop top and gold waffle embroidery skirt. Other notable people present were Anaita Shroff Adajania, cousin of Arjun Mohit Marwah and his wife Antara Motiwala, and designer Arpita Mehta.
“The collection is a celebration of the different personalities of men and my DNA. It was a very special show for me. For the past 15 years, what I haven’t played or messed with, but have had strong feelings for, woh maine 15 saal baad kia hai. There are curtains, paisleys, brocades, stuff that I thought was not for menswear, I have now used them, after 15 years,” the designer explained.
Speaking about having Arjun as a stumbling block, Kunal said, “I’m also selfish. I am my best around my family and friends like family. So any special show comes along, I’m a big believer in my vibe, my tribe, and that’s what I’ve represented for 15 years.
A fervent follower of androgynous and fluid pieces, the designer has experimented with structured pieces complemented by new silhouettes. The collection is full of flattering clothes for all shapes, sizes and styles. Jackets with integrated stoles, pattern games and intriguing textures that represent the brand’s DNA.
Designing with all points of view, Kunal aspires to dress diversity as a whole. The show saw models of different ethnicities, ages, sizes and body types walk the catwalk in uniquely designed and styled pieces from the collection. “Men’s fashion is going through such an evolution, it’s not so locked in. It used to be that men would leave second-hand clothes to someone else in the family to decide. I’m a big believer in diversity, when you’re selling at retail, you have to see the clothes on a similar skin tone and body type,” Kunal said.
Arjun spoke about his friendship with the designer and the years of struggle they shared in Mumbai. “I am very happy and proud that it has been 15 years since he opened his first store in Mumbai. I was there even before he opened and we were setting up the store together. I don’t even know if your clothes are going to be sold. I still remember the opening day, his collection was sold out in the evening. I thought this boy knew something about fashion that others didn’t.
“Today he has become someone I turn to for my marketing, my films. He will never call him. He is not one of those people who will say: ‘Achha, yeh bol raha hai, ek bhej do piece.’ He knows I do it for Arjun, or Shahid Kapoor or Ranbir during Shamshera promotions, he is very meticulous, you man care,” Arjun said.
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