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Getting the groove on

Fashion designer Nida Mahmood talks about her collections that often identify with Indian kitsch and what inspired her to start a sustainable clothing design line.

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Fashion designer Nida Mahmood

Psychedelic swirls, beholding vibrant palettes devoid of cursive detail, Nida Mahmood, the beatnik flower girl, penultimate with her sustainable apparel, home décor and mood board brand. Pulsating edginess in world fashion, taking experiential economy to a high-end twist, Nida is original. High on Chai, Sadak Chhaap, Maachis, Bioscope and The Great Indian Bohemian Tamasha, her collections identify with Indian kitsch. Pieces from her Maachis series found place in London’s Victoria & Albert Museum for the latter’s India art exhibits. With a first ever showing, ‘Champaa Gali’ from India at Eiffel Tower, Paris, she was awarded for the Most Creative Design Collection. Free spirited, with travel as her way to be, Nida gazes dreamily at the surreal canvas that life offers up.

Dressing up the filmi brat pack like Deepika Padukone, Kajol, Priyanka Chopra, Alia Bhatt, Parineeti Chopra, etc, the design lady focuses on simple silhouettes and technical aspects. Recently, she created an art installation for Absolut, with Kubrick inspired images superimposed from the catwalk and the tailor’s studio. Nida speaks with The Daily Guardian on her specific genre of creativity.

 Q. What gives you the ultimate high when conceptualising a design storyboard?

A. I get my high from creating something totally from scratch, that which is out of the ordinary, and only my perspective for the world to view. I so love the fact that we work with ideas that are not really tangible or visible, if you get the drift. My Sapna Cinema collection got inspired by Dreamscapes, and Technicolor dreams. The Adventure of Captain Must! Qalander was my imaginary retrofuturistic flying motorised ant travelling through time and space on his time machine, VDO Gaga. This collection was so metafictional and surrealistic that it broke many conformist boundaries in the design dimensional spheres.

Q. What inspired you to design for Godrej?

A. I had just launched my new line called Goodluck Irani Café when the team from Godrej got in touch with me to design decals for their white goods and interior décor accessories. Godrej fits into the refreshing and cool space that India is in, currently. I recognise this brand from my growing up days as it helps me connect with everyday life.

 Q. How do you define kitsch in your world of bohemian fashion?

A. Kitsch is ‘India’ in its people, crows and cows, its nooks and crannies, and idiosyncrasies. It defines anti-fashion, in a cohesive world with diverse ideas to co-exist, with art and design to work as a collaborative medium. I have a special love for it, and with some others in my fraternity that have helped change the definition of Kitsch. It is now the hottest rage for fashion and home décor styling. It has found recognition. Unconventional and alternative fashion is now bang up to date.

Q. As a game changer, doing a limited edition line for Harley Davidson must have been hugely challenging. Do tell us your experience with this.

A. It was a very novel concept for me as I had to explore the world of biking, which I had zero idea about. From start to finish, Harley, the colossus motorbike, a Godzilla on the roads, had me going retro funky painting the murals, designing bike apparel using my mind space, with all its collateral experience with psychedelics. HD the brand is distinctive in its individualistic glory. I had a fantastic time working with them.

 Q. What inspired you to start your sustainable clothing design line, ‘Madam Marigold’?

A. Fashion is one of the largest contributing pollutants of the environment and our ecological system. Look at what is happening in the world at the hands of careless humans. It is important to be aware of excessive consumerism and the repercussions that are creating havoc on our planet. This has pushed me towards proactively learning about sustainability in fashion and to bring in practices that help reduce the carbon footprint. For years I have been working on handlooms and Indian crafts, and along the way I have instituted my brand ‘Madam Marigold’. My principles retain the ideology that fashion must be responsible where there is no wastage or uncontrolled buying. As an eco-activist and a responsible member of the fashion fraternity, I am sensitive to defining ethical development in the design processes.

We try to use natural resources as much as possible. We make our dyes from natural materials like onion peels, flower petals, cinnamon, turmeric, tree barks and fruits. The leftover waste from the dye-making process is composted back into the soil. Having seen natural practices at our farm, this came easy to me. Creating natural manure: compost, knowing its importance for plants’ health, working hands-on in our mango orchards enabled me to enjoy gardening. It’s such a joy to provide green solutions with my homegrown terrariums and potted plants. The green shift reflects in my very being and I feel strongly about saving the planet.

 Q. Have you been experimenting lately with quirky style storyboards?

 A. I recently did a collaboration with Milind Soman, designing an active wear leisure line for Deivee, simply with the intention of getting women to get out of their homes to run. Running, as we know, is a vital part of Milind’s life, and by default he has committed himself to alluring people towards fitness. We came up with the idea of making the “running sari” so that women who don’t feel comfortable wearing fitted lycra leggings and body-hugging sporty tops can also find motivation to get out of their homes and exercise. I had a great time working with him. He is a creative man and I loved his energy. On a fun note, every time he would come to my office, my team would be too star-struck!

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Lifestyle & Entertainment

PATRIOTIC AND HARD-HITTING WEB SERIES TO BINGE WATCH ON REPUBLIC DAY

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NEW DELHI: As India celebrates 73 years of becoming a republic on Wednesday, the Covid-19 pandemic has once again confined us to a subdued celebration. So while you celebrate Republic Day at home, we bring you a list of 5 web series you can binge-watch with your friends and family that is sure to arouse the feeling of patriotism in you.

‘Family Man’ Season 1 and 2: One of the most talked-about web series of 2019 and 2021, is the Manoj Bajpayee-starrer ‘The Family Man’. Manoj, as Shrikant Tiwari is a middle-class man secretly working as a senior officer in the Threat Analysis and Surveillance Cell (TASK) and does everything in his strength and might to save his country. Both the seasons are edge-of-the-seat thrillers with drama and comedy sprinkled in it, in just the right amount.

‘Special Ops’ Season 1: This series stars Kay Kay Menon as Himmat Singh, a RAW agent investigating the prime suspects of the 2001 Parliament terror attack. The series is available on Disney+ Hotstar.

‘Bhaukaal’ Season 1 and 2: Inspired by true events, the web series ‘Bhaukaal’ is set in Muzaffarnagar in 2003, which was then better known as the crime capital of India, and the series tells the tale of how one courageous officer goes on a clean-up drive to punish criminals, battles local influential personalities and re-establishes the faith of the common man in the law. It is available for free on MX Player.

‘Mumbai Diaries 26/11’: One aspect that everyone forgets when we speak about terror attacks is the impact it has on the hospitals. The first web series to show the reality of what doctors faced during the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks is this. The series is available on Amazon Prime.

‘Grahan’: A hard-hitting web series that is sure to leave any person teary-eyed is the 2021 web series, ‘Grahan’. Based on the Sikh Riots of 1984, the web series revolves around Inspector Amrita Singh (Zoya Hussain), who has been assigned in the Special Investigation Team (SIT) to investigate and reopen the 1984 Sikh Riots in Bokaro, Jharkhand, only to discover that the main accused is her own father, Gursevak Singh, a Sikh himself.

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DHANUSH SIGNS TWO BIG-BUDGET BOLLYWOOD PROJECTS

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MUMBAI: Dhanush has always been a crowd favourite and now after the blockbuster hit ‘Atrangi Re’, he has proved that he is the flavour of the year, indeed. Post the massive success of Aanand L Rai’s dream directorial venture, everyone across the industry is raving and talking about the south superstar.

It isn’t the first time Dhanush has shaken the Indian cinema landscape and created a stir in the industry with his collaboration with the master storyteller Aanand L Rai. Earlier, the powerhouse duo gave the blockbuster hit Raanjhanaa, which went on to break multiple records. Now, we hear an exciting update from the actor’s end. A source reveals, “Dhanush and Aanand L Rai have brilliant synergy together. After two runaway successes, the powerhouse actor-director duo is collaborating for an action love story produced by Aanand L Rai’s home banner Colour Yellow.” The star has bagged the role immediately after the success of ‘Atrangi Re’, which speaks volumes about his performance in the film. Counted as Aanand L Rai’s favourite muse, Dhanush will have a full-blown commercial avatar in their upcoming project. Well, this isn’t all! The source further revealed, “Dhanush has also signed another big-bang Bollywood film with another celebrated production house. Owing to the massive acclaim he earned for Atrangi Re, the industry’s biggies are lining up to sign the actor on.” 

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KARTIK’S ‘BHOOL BHULAIYAA 2’ STICKS TO SAME RELEASE DATE

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NEW DELHI: Amid several speculations, makers of one of the much-awaited movies of the year ‘Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2’ have clarified that the film’s release date has not been postponed and will release on the same date that was announced earlier.

Indian film critic and trade analyst Taran Adarsh confirmed the news on his Twitter. “NO POSTPONEMENT: ‘BHOOL BHULAIYAA 2’ TO RELEASE ON SAME DATE… #BhoolBhulaiyaa2 to release on its earlier announced date [25 March 2022]… In *cinemas*… Stars #KartikAaryan, #KiaraAdvani and #Tabu… Directed by #AneesBazmee… Produced by #BhushanKumar and #MuradKhetani,” he tweeted.

‘Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2’ is the sequel of the comic supernatural thriller drama of the same name. The first part of the film was a remake of the Malayalam blockbuster ‘Manichitrathazhu’ which starred Akshay Kumar in the lead besides, other actors including Vidya Balan, Shiney Ahuja, and Amisha Patel. The sequel will be headlined by Kartik Aaryan and Kiara Advani. The film will be helmed by Anees Bazmee, unlike the first one which was directed by Priyadarshan. Tabu will also play a pivotal role in the film, with Rajpal Yadav reprising his role as Chhote Pandit.

‘Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2’ is produced by Bhushan Kumar, Murad Khetani, and Krishan Kumar under the banner of T-Series and Cine 1 studios.

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FOUR FILMMAKERS WHO GAVE LOVE A NEW DEFINITION WITH THEIR WORK

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MUMBAI: Indian Cinema enjoys playing with the concept of love. Over the years, filmmakers have come up with a different take on romance. Our screens have lit with passionate love sagas to nuanced love triangles to new-age digital romance.

But as conventional as the subject is, our industry has seen some of the most beautiful, unconventional, and relatably extraordinary love stories by a few filmmakers. These master storytellers have given the audience cinematic gems that presented ‘love’ with a new lens.

Here’s listing four directors and their work below one must watch for a refreshing take!

SHOOJIT SIRCAR: While Shoojit Sircar has diverse filmography, his representation of love in ‘October’ has a different fan base. The idea of slow and undefinable romance between two individuals was hauntingly beautiful.

IMTIAZ ALI: Well, Imtiaz Ali has given many modern-age classic love stories. His bubbly tale of romance with ‘Jab We Met’ and the intense saga of passion with ‘Rockstar’ seem to top the list.

VINIL MATHEW: Vinil Mathew discussed the nuances and messiness of love with both his projects. While ‘Hasee Toh Phasee’ dived into many layers of human relationships, ‘Haseen Dillruba’ took a pulpy route into small-town passion and infidelity.

SHAKUN BATRA: Shakun Batra is making noise for his attempt to talk about infidelity in a relationship with ‘Gehraiyaan’. He also took an unconventional route with ‘Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu’ when a love story ends with a friendship.

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KATRINA KAIF ROCKS BEAUTIFUL BEACH LOOK AT MALDIVES

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MUMBAI : Bollywood actor Katrina Kaif is all set to embrace the summer vibes, as seen from her latest social media post.

Taking to her Instagram handle on Monday, the actor, who is currently in the Maldives for a project, shared pictures from the beach. In the photos, the ‘Sooryavanshi’ star can be seen dressed in a white-and-green shirt with matching floral shorts. In the caption, she wrote, “#myhappyplace.”

Fans, friends and colleagues flooded the post with likes and comments. Zoya Akhtar dropped a heart emoticon. “Queen of million hearts,” a fan added.

On the work front, Katrina’s future projects include ‘Tiger 3’, ‘Merry Christmas’ and Farhan Akhtar’s ‘Jee Le Zara’, co-starring Priyanka Chopra and Alia Bhatt.

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RAJKUMMAR, BHUMI UNVEIL THEIR FIRST LOOK FROM ‘BADHAAI DO’

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MUMBAI: Get ready to have a smile on your face as actors Rajkummar Rao and Bhumi Pednekar have shared the first glimpse of their comedy film ‘Badhaai Do’. On Monday, the two took to their respective Instagram handles and unveiled the film’s first poster. In the poster, Rajkummar and Bhumi can be seen dressed as a bride and a groom. The image also shows them covering each other’s mouths.

Reportedly, Rajkummar plays the role of a cop and Bhumi essays the character of a PT teacher in the movie. “Kal aa raha hai hamara trailer. Kal Badhaai dena vaise aaj bhi dena chaho toh de sakte ho. #BadhaaiDoInCinemas Can’t keep it a secret anymore, Badhaai Do trailer out Tomorrow,” Rajkummar wrote. The movie is directed by Harshavardhan Kulkarni, is one of the most eagerly awaited family entertainers releasing this year in cinemas. Directed by Harshvardhan Kulkarni, ‘Badhaai Do’ is a sequel to the National Award-winning film ‘Badhaai Ho’, which chronicled the story of a middle-aged couple, played by Neena Gupta and Gajraj Rao, facing an unexpected pregnancy. The trailer of the upcoming film will be out on Tuesday.

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