What made Frida look like “The Frida Kahlo”?

It wouldn’t be wrong to say that the unconventional and unapologetic artist, Frida Kahlo
resort to fashion and style to earn the powerful and confident personality of hers attached with numerous other adjectives. Her flamboyant sense of dressing and fearless flaunting of the unibrow and facial hair made its place in 1937 French vogue. While many would have thought it as an attempt to acquire an ‘artist-like’ image or to simply look distinctive, Kahlo had more to it. Both her art and her attire had always been a response to her life. It has been noted that her art was a direct depiction of major life events, tragedies, physical and emotional trauma, for the public to see and experience. But, her dressing style was a hiding home for her insecurities and imperfections.

Frida was a mixed-race woman, born to a German father and a half Spanish, half indigenous mother in Mexico City on June 6, 1907. Frida was called peg-leg at her school because she contracted polio at a delicate age of 6.  Due to the disease, Frida‘s right leg grew much smaller than her left. To conceal it, she wore long skirts and layers of socks. Regardless, Frida was a very active child and participated in activities like swimming, boxing, soccer which were all very unusual for girls at that particular time. Her interest in sports could be one the reason why she kept her hair short most of her childhood and teenage. While some believe, she had an androgynous identity. There are several pictures of Kahlo, where she is dressed up as a man, in a three-piece suit and sometimes a shirt and a tie. Maybe the unibrow and the light moustache are an extension of this side of her personality.  Her sexuality and sense of dressing during this phase of her life was further questioned because of her inappropriate relations with her female gym teacher when Frida was only 13 years old. The relationship ended when Frida‘s mother found out some letters exchanged between the two.
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Two years forward, when Frida was 15 she was infatuated with a famous mural artist Diego Rivera who was 36 years old at the time. They got married 7 years later when she Frida was 22 and he was 43. Diego was not the most attractive looking man but most assuredly charming and very popular among women. A dramatic and tumultuous marriage had a big impact on Frida‘s style of painting and dressing. Since Diego liked her in traditional clothing and long hair, she started to dress in a more feminine Mexican manner. She occasionally wore the traditional Tehuana Dress with a type of headdress that surrounds the face called ‘resplandor’. She wore her hair in braids with colorful ribbons and flowers that made her style very unique and iconic. Her skirts were big and blouse airy with extravagant prints and hues. This was also a way of hiding her many surgical scars which she got due to a nearly fatal bus-trolley accident where Kahlo was badly injured in her pelvis and spinal column. Frida went through 22 surgeries in her life and 3 miscarriages. She had to wear full body casts which is why it was ideal to wear loose fitted Mexican blouses. Being the the passionate artist that she was, she is seen painting on one of her many plaster corsets in a photograph from 1951. She painted tigers, monkeys, and birds on it. This explains how both her art and her attire were a door of escapism from the sorrows in her life.

Frida was a very strong-headed and empowered woman. We see her experimenting looks from time to time without attending to what society thinks. Even her art was a reflection of her self. Frida herself said, “They thought I was a Surrealist, but I wasn’t. I never painted dreams. I painted my own reality.” In 1940 Frida painted one of her most famous works, ‘Self-portrait with cropped hair’ reflecting an incredibly painful phase in her life. When she found out that Deigo had an affair with her younger sister, Frida went through an emotional turmoil. She cropped all of her hair, got rid of her feminine image that Rivera was smitten with and started to wear men’s suit again. Thus she painted a self-portrait of the new Frida who is independent and does not rely on men.

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However, a year later Diego asked Frida to remarry him when she was very sick due to severe back pain and was admitted to a hospital. Her hair grew long again and she started to dress up the way her husband liked. In 1943 she painted a self-portrait wearing a Tehuana with a portrait of Diego on her forehead. Frida‘s health worsened in the following years and the doctors had to replace her cast and leather corsets with a metallic corset. She painted ‘The broken column’ in 1944 after the operation. The painting shows her face covered in tears and countless iron nails all over her body.  Even in the most agonizing times, she did not wanted to miss an opportunity to study herself at that time in her life and paint herself all over again. In 1953 her right leg was amputated and she had to wear a prosthetic foot.

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After Frida died in 1954, Rivera locked her belongings in a bathroom of La Casa Azul, Kahlo’s home in Coyoacán, Mexico. It was not unlocked until 2002. Heavy necklaces of jade and coral, makeup, several clothes, and headdresses were found which are visible in the hundreds of photographs that exist of her.  Many of her corsets, prosthetic foot and pairs of boots were also found. Her painted and embroidered shoes were none the less very bright and attractive. She wore an upright heel in her right foot to balance her uneven legs.   Even when Frida was lying in bed, unable to sit or stand for long, she would wear flowers in her hair, jewellery and her favourite lipstick: Everything’s Rosy by Revlon. The beautiful headdresses and jewellery distracted one from her legs and her body.

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Her disabilities could be seen in her works but never on her appearances. She was an
an extraordinary woman who inspired several books, movies, songs and without a doubt, fearless art and fashion.

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Co-ordinated quirk!

Co-ordinated clothing made its way again into the street style about two seasons back but my earliest memory of admiring the trend is on the hot Mrs. Briganza from Kuch Kuch and Poo from K3G. Obviously, Karan Johar knew the drill back then too.

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But now is the time when they are more vivid and scintillating than ever. A lot of co-ordinates dipped in a pool of sassy patterns, motifs, doodles and basically anything mishmash has become the go-to mode if the aim is to jut out in the ‘style’ world. Where the ‘less is more’ approach is always loved and petted like a cute puppy, the ‘more out there’ fashion statements now make you the lion of the jungle. I mean metaphorically of course unless Ranveer Singh does it literally.

No doubts this ragbag way of dressing are the most difficult to, a – think of and b – pull-off. No wonder there is double the number of stylists than the celebs now. It does seem like their favorite way of doing it is with a pantsuit. Rolled up in quirk, see how they do it!

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बर्लिन की गली में 🖖

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The quirk sees no bound. However, it demands a great deal of conviction to pull-off something unusual like this. You better take it seriously, after all, Beyonce and Ranveer Singh are fighting battles over who wore the patterned silk suit better?

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Another suit was sported on Madhuri Dixit in velvet by Sneha Arora, thus expanding the spectrum of experimentation and variety. I did a co-ordinated shiny brocade pantsuit in hot pink and gold for the sake of same, experimentation and variety.  The fabric and pattern are very Indian which makes this power suit like none other and isn’t making it exclusive the whole point of it? It’s a piece that can be worn to our desi wedding functions to give the dulha’s friends in tuxes, a run for their money.

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The White Lehngha Wave

Looks like celebrating love is the most fashionable thing to do this season amongst the Bollywood stars. And when it comes to weddings, stars do what they ought to! They shone and dazzled in their Abu Jani’s, Manish Malhotra’s and many more. Majestically extravagant and voluminous lehngha skirts, the tiniest cholis and dupattas is the patent dress code of all weddings. Lehnghas are one of the most traditional ensembles that are not only restricted to the brides but is the go-to outfit for the bridesmaids as well.

We observed a lot of love for pristine white lehnghas with heavy embellishments. Now just because it’s white, doesn’t mean it’s not wedding appropriate! The most awaited brides of the movie industry wore this color to their wedding celebrations. Apart from taking the white lehngha to Cannes, Sonam Kapoor’s own sangeet had her favorite color (white) as the dress code for everyone. She wore a white Abu Jani Sandeep Khosla chickenkari lehngha. A similar look was seen on Deepika Padukone for her Reception party where she wore a white n gold chickenkari demi-saree by the same designer. Not to forget the bride who crossed borders for love, Priyanka Chopra, also wore a white lehngha to her reception.

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Not just the brides, this trend was embraced by the wedding guests too, also spotted at the red carpets and magazine covers! From my curiosity to dive into this white lehngha wave, I found this gorgeous piece from a designer boutique called ‘November born‘. The lucidity of the color along with intricacy of the ornamentation makes it look like god sent! The lehngha is in pure organza fabric, hand embroidered and has some tassel-Zazzle for the sleeves! Hope you enjoy the pictures and pick white for the next desi attire you buy!

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outfit courtesy: @novemberborn

follow me on Instagram for more @aircastlebuilder

 

 

 

New Year’s Party Lookbook

Heya! Can’t believe 2018 passed by so quickly. The only thing I hope for with each coming year is that I learn something new, find new inspiration, work at a new goal and make most out of every day. Amongst all of that, it’s important to keep days for resting, rejuvenating yourself and having a good time with your loved ones. Each New year calls for great party time with a bang-on party dress.

I decided to put together four different dresses for the New Year’s Eve party with this super stylish brand called RA-Indulge.

Tough tease

If You’re bold and fierce but the hard to get kind, this outfit is just the one for you. The decent length is contrasted with a teasing thigh slit. Metallics, iridescent are the trendiest way to wear high shine this season.

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Legs for days

If you like to flaunt those legs and a mini is your thing then this outfit will make you feel like a happy bird. The feathered skirt is in this beautiful lavender color and the upper is sequinned with a v-neckline. No jewels required, this piece is a statement in itself!

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Boss babe

A blazer dress is the sexiest ‘boss-lady goes to a party’ outfit of all times. It’s seen on Many celebs and very recently on Blake Lively. The blazer dress is the new LBD! You can shop variants in these from RA-indulge or sites like shein.

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Total Tomboy

This is the most comfortable and edgier outfit of all. It’s perfect for you if you live in your lee and levis’ just like me and dresses are not your thing. Swap that pair of denims with these fun fringed trousers, with a matching top and contrasting jacket.

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I would be glad to know your feedback on these four looks that I put together for New Year. Hope you have a wonderful, hopeful and joyful New year 2019. Make sure you kick a leg at that New year’s eve party. Cheers!

Follow me on IG (aircastlebuilder) for more pictures and behind the scenes action!

Outfits by : RA Indulge

Photography credits : Nitish Midha 

I moved on!

It truly sucks moving on and leaving behind who you thought was the only one for you, there is always a reason behind it, and it’s fashion this time. My very observant neuron ‘Mr. F’, as I call him, says it was getting a bit of exaggerated and boring so I moved onto something a bit fresher, brighter and more vibrant!

(Did you think I was talking about guys? Well, it’s not very different. Haha)

News has it that the mad wave of millennial pink is dying out. It was all over the fashion, accessories, and decor industry since 2016. As per the fall 2018 trends, a more punchy, in-your-face version of pink is seen taking its throne back in hand. Hot pink is definitely the hottest color this season and your favorite celebs prove it and how!

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Fun night. Fun people. ❤️🎉

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Leaving behind our very dear old rose pink, I moved onto trying a very chic indo-western piece in fuschia. This color speaks volumes about how vivid the garment is. Neatly pleated fabric flows softly in a very rhythmic manner and the silhouette hugs your body at the right places. The golden embroidered patches break the monotony and add some sparkle for any party night.

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Share your comments and your favorite shade of pink because “Pink isn’t just a color it’s an Attitude too!”

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Outfit courtesy: Syaaks’ Boutique, Jalandhar

Photography credits: Rohit Sandhu

Thankyou Vibhuti for being my bro!

 

Saree on-the-go 0.2

Lazy Girl Alert !!

They say it’s not easy being a girl, it’s even harder if you’re a lazy one!

You have this place to go to and picking out clothes can sometimes be a bit weepy. That beautiful short dress? but hey! you aren’t waxed. Looking for something less revealing… the Anarkali Kurta, but that needs a good 10 mins of ironing and no doubt you’re in a rush. Oh, why have you been procrastinating on buying the exact red lipstick that goes with that top? That one needs an alteration and your ‘master ji’ stitched this one poles apart of what you explained to him.

These are a few of the many dilemmas we face every day. So we basically come up with ‘jugads’ and shortcuts, then call it fashion. Haha!

I talked about wearable sarees in my previous post and promised another look regarding the last-minute, go-to ideas to wear a saree. A regular saree can be worn with a crop top, a bralette or a shirt to turn it into an edgier version instead of going through the hassles of getting a matching blouse stitched or fitting into in the same old one when you’ve been eating a lot the past week. Throw a jacket or a blazer to make it even more interesting.

Here, I got this beautiful running piece of fabric with multiple pastel shades of the sunset. Instead of a regular, deep-cut saree blouse, I went for a white embroidered shirt. I slid the pallu under the knot of my shirt which added a lil’ extra punch to the look and made it a hands-free one! If only Anjali knew the trick 😛

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I accessorized the look with a pair of earrings, a box metal clutch in turquoise to add a pop of color and my favorite hexagonal Raybans.

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I hope you enjoyed the look and the pictures. We meet again with some fashion dose for the festive season!

Follow me on IG for more: aircastlebuilder

Big thanks and love to thesuprstory and rs.sandhu :*

Saree on-the-go 0.1

A saree, of over 15 regional types and in it’s 18 traditional draping styles, is widely worn in our country. But there are countless ways in which ‘The saree’ has been adapted and laid into the modern scenario in its numerous abstract forms. Being this big beautiful length of fabric, it becomes a very dynamic piece for experimentation and styling.

A saree is perhaps the only surviving unstitched garment. But recently we’ve seen the seen the skirt replaced by versions of pants, palazzos, dhotis etc., while the most arresting part of the saree- ‘the pallu’ is kept intact. It not only makes the saree a more wearable option but also adds a quirky touch to it. The fused western elements in the saree provide a sense of comfort and leisure to a piece which we otherwise think of as a clumsy-looking, hard-to-handle outfit.

The grace of a saree and comfort of a pant is what I intended at with this look. I am wearing a white crop top with a matching palazzo and dupatta set. I draped the dupatta from the back of my waist over my shoulders like a saree pallu. Both, the cut and the fabric of the pants is super airy which makes it perfect for a day-out. I paired the outfit with tan oxfords and some oxidized jewelry. My reading glasses and a good page turner accompanied. 🙂

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Palazzo and dupatta set – Libas @ jabong

crop top- Forever21

p.s. I am coming up with another ‘Saree on-the-go’ version very soon. I hope you enjoy this one and stick around for the next!