Tuned to tunics

Tuned to tunics

Style Quotient

Tuned to tunics

Deepika Govind

The contours of kurta have been given a drastic makeover and has evolved into tunic. Yet in its essence it is the same old Indian kurta. Today, tunic is one among the most popular clothing, among women.

Fashion designer Deepika Govind believes that the kurta has undergone a startling metamorphosis in its journey from a traditional attire to a modern mix of global influences and a lingering Indian identity, “You could call it a sea change, in terms of the unusual silhouettes that have emerged, which are often more Western in interpretation. Some kurtas are even worn as dresses, hence widening its functional range,” Deepika says.

Deepika reasons that the way tunics and kurtas are worn make all the difference. “They could be teamed with stretch denims or skinny pants, all variations of salwars, as well as dhoti drape variations. An example to illustrate: A plain red tunic could be paired with fitted denims to achieve a relaxed look. An ochre salwar co-ordinate, on the other hand, gives you a distinct ethnic appearance,” says Deepika. She observes that the silhouette is sculpted according to the style and co-ordinate. “There is a certain volume to the kurta paired with slim trousers; a degree of shortness accompanies the salwar co-ordinate.

A Model walks the ramp in tunic. The long and short of it is — the length has a lot to do with the final look,” she says. 

The adventurous can try out variations in tunics. On a personal level, Deepika prefers kurtas and tunics, carrying intricate detailing both in terms of textile and textures. She feels unusual delicate details distinguishes the garment. She suggests that one has much to choose from — mookaish work, gota work, patchwork, applique, threadwork embroidery to a subtle spray of crystals in jewel tones.

“When you choose a tunic, opt for a particular kind of detailing and go the whole hog. Steer clear from the ones that mix a variety of techniques in a single garment, often it’s a dizzying cocktail and detracts from the overall look,” she advises.

Tunics can double up into an evening wear or even a relaxed daywear, depending on canvas one uses. Deepika reasons that while the cotton tunic could appear more relaxed, silk could afford it a degree of formality for the evening. She points out that the detailing could define the function of the garment.

Tweak it in style

Aparna Tunics and kurtas have an air of ‘separated at birth’ about them. They are so similar, in contours as well as as their soul. Aparna Vengulekar is a designer whose creations seemlessly blend tunics and kurtas.

Kurtas are Aparna's favourite. But she is equally dexterous in exploring tunics as well. “The kurta has changed immensely and it has become much more stylish and trendy. Today, the kurta lies somewhere between a Western and Indian wear,” says Aparna.
She feels tunics can be worn on jeans, churidaars and can also double up as a dress as well. "That is if one can carry it off like a dress,” she observes.

She reasons that one can embellish the kurta and upgrade it to a tunic depending on the occasion. “I prefer a denim stretch one that is sporty. Embroidery would make it ethnic. A formal collar and sleeves could make it more like an office wear. The sky is the limit for the neck styles-in cut, cowl neck, boat neck, collar... all would add a different look to it,” she says.

Aparna finds tunics very versatile and she says nothing beats the comfort it affords. “Tunics are all forgiving if you are a bit on the heavier side around your hips. It’s a must have in every woman’s wardrobe,” says Aparna.

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