Northeastern talent to the fore

Last Updated 23 September 2013, 15:26 IST

A scintillating evening kicked off in the Capital as the sister states from the Northeast of India congregated for a mega four-day festival on 19 September. Organised by the North East Institute of Fashion Technology (NEIFT) North East Design Fest comprised fashion shows, cultural programmes and exhibits of handloom, handicrafts and jute
products of the North East Indian region.

In his welcome address, Vikram Rai Medhi, event director for the festival declared it open by saying, “Designers, weavers, artisans from Northeast would find a roadmap ahead through this festival. This would lead to new avenues of exposure for the artists from the Northeast.”

With an array of products on display ranging from colourful cane and plastic buckets and wallets from Manipur to black pottery products made from serpentine rocks from Nagaland, the festival had a lot for the shopaholics in the City. Amidst perfumed candles marked with spears and raivats, the traditional shawls from the region, there was a stall for phulkari from Punjab, making a surprise appearance in between everything Northeast Indian.

A stall owner from Assam getting a lot of attention from youngsters described his wares saying, “It’s a jacket made of Mogasilk. This is usually used by photographers.” Besides, he talked about the bright and golden ties on his stall, saying, “Men use it during festivals to match up to the beautifully adorned jewellery by women around them.” Full marks
for the idea!

If jewellery and raivats are not your things, then the fest had some rollicking performances and fashion fiestas up its sleeve to keep the audience entertained. Day one of North East Design Fest witnessed three fashion shows highlighting handloom and handicrafts by designers Meghna Rai Medhi, Aji Semy Rengma and Mona Pali.

The inaugural performance of the festival was a sattriya Dance performed by Sanjukta Barooah and rock band group ‘Featherhead’ performed folk and rock fusion to infuse some electric energy in the crowd. Bollywood stars Minisha Lamba, Sonal Chauhan with others walked the ramp supporting and expressing their solidarity to the talents of Northeast.

The eight exotic and to an extent unexplored states of Northeast – Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Tripura, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram and Sikkim have a strong history of traditional textiles and handicrafts which forms an integral element of its socio- economic structure of the society. The festival aimed at being a curtain raiser for the versatility of the Northeast region.

(Published 23 September 2013, 15:26 IST)

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