Haute turbanators: French designer Jean Paul Gaultier’s Sikh-inspired line reflects love of India

Posted by: Adhika | Posted on: July 12th, 2012 | No Comments

In India the turban is referred to as a pagri, meaning the headdress that is worn by men and is manually tied. There are several styles, specific to the wearer’s region or religion, and they vary in shape, size and colour. For example, the Marathi pheta and the Sikh Dastar. The pagri is a symbol of honour and respect everywhere it is worn; it is a common practice to honour important guests by offering them one to wear. Colours are often chosen to suit the occasion or circumstance: for example saffron, associated with valour, is worn during rallies; white, associated with peace, is worn by elders; and pink, associated with spring, is worn during that season or for marriage ceremonies.

During the British period the Muslim elites of South Asia, especially in western Punjab, used to wear a long pagri which was also a symbol of nobility, honour and respect. In the Muslim majority regions of Punjab and Sindh members of the land aristocracy always wore elaborate turbans known as the pagri. It was a part of the full formal dress that included the shewani. The Indian Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, currently owns the biggest known turban throughout history!

Designer Jean Paul Gaultier’s love for India reflects in his womenswear and menswear collections from time to time. Like Gaultier, India has been an inspiration to many international design houses and with time, the country has also carved out a significant spot for itself on the global fashion map. The renowned designer’s use of sari gowns, traditional Indian colours and fabrics and stylised lambskin Jodhpurs has already evoked rave reviews in the fashion world.

 

Urban turban: A model displays a creation for the French designer Jean-Paul GaultierUrban turban: A model displays a creation for the French designer Jean-Paul Gaultier
And with his spring/summer 2013 menswear collection which was showcased in Paris on Thursday, Gaultier of Hermès proved that his love for India is no fleeting romance.

Dressing up his models in Sikh-styled turbans, teamed with various ensembles such as shorts, blazers, tuxedos, T-shirts and overcoats, Gaultier paid a rich tribute once more to the land of many cultures and colours.

Colourful headwear: The French designer says he is always inspired by India
Colourful headwear: The French designer says he is always inspired by India No jacket required: The versatile garment can be worn anywhere

The collection was inspired by the travel theme, presenting a globe-trotting fashionable man who understands the very essence of travelling that is cultivating a bigger understanding and respect for various cultures.

He then reflects the same in his wardrobe and style. Talking about his India connect, Gaultier had said in an interview recently: ‘In every collection I have done, there is always an Indian inspiration.’

The designer is known to visit the country quite often and owns a vast library of intensely coloured textile swatches here since his first visit to Kolkata in West Bengal and Puri in Orissa, in the 1970s.

If the hat fits…: The latest collection was inspired by the theme of travel.
A model displays a creation by French designer Jean-Paul Gaultier
A model displays a creation by French designer Jean-Paul Gaultier

 

Special thanks to Mail Online India and Wikipedia for their work on this piece. Do feel free to join our conversation at our group face on facebook under ‘Prem United.’ Let us know – are you inspired by these fashions? And for instant updates of our blog, please press the ‘LIKE’ button on our homepage to become a fan of our work! Thank you for checking out this post!!

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