It's a sultry November afternoon when I pull up to the Sukriti and Aakriti store. Situated in Mumbai's tony Juhu suburb and surrounded by more designers for neighbours, it's Indian wear wonderland from the moment I step in. From end to end, racks are filled with lehengas, salwars and suits as far as the eye can see. Each takes on a shade of their own; from fiery orange and striking black to regal purple and ruby red. I also happen to catch a glimpse of the Bollywood-favourite sharara which the label has brought back to popularity.
Sukriti and Aakriti Grover form a unique sister set as founders and creative heads of their eponymous label. Their brand is the epitome of modern Indian wear - fresh and breezy, while still rooted in traditional designs. Organic cotton is a constant in their label, making it even more comfortable and suited for the Indian climate. A glance through their collections is enough to tell you how low on hassle and high on chic quotient they are. So it won't surprise you that they are a permanent fixture in most celebrity closets today, especially during the festive season. From Alia Bhatt to Janhvi Kapoor, every Bollywood star you can recall in recent times has strutted their stuff in this label. Their designer brand may be their first baby but the siblings are multi-talented with Sukriti's penchant for styling and Aakriti's swimwear brand Flirtatious that is also housed in store.
Indo Bohemian For Winter Festive 2019
Opening their doors to us, we start by exploring Sukriti and Aakriti's new Indo Bohemian collection which has launched right in time for the wedding season. Staying true to the brand, it includes eclectic elements like tassels, print mixes, ruffles and frills. Expect to see short peplum kurtas, sequin work, modern cuts as well as sparkle in plenty. Colour palettes are deeper for the season while voluminous structures steal the show.
'Kareena Kapoor Was Our Most Memorably Dressed Celebrity'
"For movie promotions, Kareena wore a black and gold outfit with chandbalis, a messy bun and kohl in her eyes. The simplicity of the outfit and Kareena carrying it with such ease made it one of the best moments for Sukriti and Aakriti", says Sukriti and continues, "Aditi Rao Hydari fits our brand vibe very well. She understands the importance of Indian fashion and the beauty in wearing cotton." When it comes to picking their favourite celebrity to dress up, it's a tough call but goes to the stunning Shilpa Shetty. "With her fabulous figure and height, she did complete justice to our white floral printed sharara which she wore to Sonam Kapoor's mehendi.", says Aakriti, beaming with pride.
The one Sukriti and Aakriti outfit that spurned the biggest trend goes to their sharara, hands down. "Two years ago during Ganesh Chaturthi, multiple Bollywood celebrities like Aishwarya Rai, Kriti Sanon, Malaika Arora and Kareena Kapoor wore shararas back-to-back, which was our turning point. Barely anyone else was designing shararas in cotton and the ease of the outfit really caught on", informs Sukriti.
'Every Bollywood Wedding Has Been Unique'
When asked about the wedding trends for the season to come, here's what Sukriti predicts. "Weddings are seeing experimentation between traditional and contemporary. Minimalism is catching on; you see that with only a string of kaliras or a few bangles for her chura. Intermingling of cultures and traditions of India with the West has created fusion that is a whole new ballgame in the wedding space." Their most important expert tip for a bride is that of comfort on her wedding day. Says Sukriti, "She needs to be able to enjoy her day, not weighed down in a heavy outfit. More people are also choosing outfits they can wear post the wedding, which aren't cumbersome." Akriti believes that white is the most serene choice to make for the wedding saying, "It may have been taboo at one point but there has been a shift and it's an elegant choice which you even add a tinge of beige or pink to."Comments
If you've ever wondered about choosing a bridal look that is also climate appropriate, Sukriti advises, "Modern silhouettes with strap cholis are great for a hot spot. A saree gown is a rage and don't require draping. Belting a lehenga or saree is also a good idea to cinch the waist and keep dupattas in place." When asked for fashion tips inspired by Bollywood's celebrity weddings, Sukriti replied, "Every Bollywood wedding has been so different from the other. Anushka Sharma started the trend of wearing pastels and vintage roses with foliage decor. Sonam Kapoor's white night for her sangeet was really beautiful. Deepika Padukone's take was traditional with her sarees and Sabyasachi looks. Priyanka Chopra wore an eclectic lehenga for her mehendi and red on red for her wedding, with her own take on tradition."