Rajasthani women at the Pushkar festival.
Pushkar, October 2014.
Jharna, 29. Net Editor(right)
Green flower print dress – Topshop
Shrug – Export surplus store, Kemps Corner
Bhumica, 27. Fashion designer(left)
Flower on her head – ?
Just living is not enough. One must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower.
– H.C. Anderson
“When I was a kid, I would parade around the house in my mom’s scarf, blouse, high-heels, & make up and end up amusing or angering my family & relatives. I had a picture of me in that get up but I got rid of it when I was a bit older. It was too embarrassing.
During college days, I would mostly wear tight pants and would use my mom’s sewing machine to alter them myself. I was also paid to do the same for many of my classmates.”
“Another thing I was paid to do in college was – erase remarks from conduct sheets. My sister Samantha and I had a talent for scraping off remarks with a blade and an eraser. We would sit on our back bench and do all that for vada pavs, samosas & pepsi colas.”
FCUK in my wardrobe.
When I was a teenager, I used to wear tee shirts with silly one-liners, bought by my friends and relatives from abroad. I would only want the ones with scandalous one-liners like “too busy to FCUK.”
It was a TOTAL LIE.
“I prefer women’s clothing due to the non-availability of my size, fit, and also because I feel more comfortable being androgynous. Also, what I shop depends on my mood. It’s like sometimes I love to sport a beard, other times-false eyelashes…but more the beard. At present, I like loose clothing and I think women’s clothing offers that without losing elegance.”
Elton has worked for Vogue, GQ, International Traveller, M, Marie Claire, Grazia and is excited about his first Hindi feature film ‘I Am’ directed by Onir that will release this September.
Click here to see some of his work.
Neville is 21, has a Bachelor’s degree in Literature and plans to do a post graduation in journalism or creative writing. He has been active in theatre since he was 16. He also occasionally blogs for Fashion tv here – Young and Stylish.
“The two biggest influences on my style are Elton and my friend Alisha. They both taught me to open my mind and dress the way I want to without worrying about what people think. They gave me the little extra boost in confidence that I needed. I think I bought my first pair of skinny jeans a good two years before I met Alisha and I didn’t have the guts to wear them until I met her.”
“I’m quite petite and most of the time I don’t find my size in the men’s range of most brands. I don’t like v-necks and sleeveless tops so I wouldn’t buy that from anywhere. However, if I like a tee I would buy it even if it happens to be from the women’s section.”
“The cheapest purchase I ever made was shoe laces. Ten bucks for a pair from the mochi down by my house. I’ve about 10 pairs of shoe laces. A neon green pair, a deep green pair, a purple pair, a double sided yellow and black pair, a red pair with black stars on it, a rainbow pair, and my personal favourite – white laces with glittery silver threads in them. They look gorgeous with just a little bit of shimmer – not too much to make it tacky or distasteful and not too little to make it go unnoticed.”
All clothes are from FCUK, Elton’s shoes are from MBK Mall, Bangkok for about 350Rs. Brooches are from SPLASH, Hyderabad for about 400-500Rs. Shoelaces in the picture are Neville’s.
This post was inspired by FCUK’s ‘The Man’ campaign..
The purpose of this analogy is to present the idea of fashion brands hiring men like these as models, transforming them into aspirational figures inspired by the accounts of their difficult lives and in return providing them with an alternate source of income.
I am tired of looking at billboards with grinning celebrities. I think it would be fresh & different for fashion brands to deviate from the regular stuff that they are doing & have been doing for years. Using these men could bring some character and real life to their dull campaigns.
What if this does not work? Well..fear of failure is never a reason not to try something. Right?
“Many great ideas have been lost because the people who had them could not stand being laughed at.”
One of the things that struck me the most, when I stayed in Dharamsala, was the abundance of color all around that somehow seemed to be in perfect harmony with the projected minimalism of life.
In reality, the color of a monk’s robe is not just plain red but varies in many shades of red, ranging from maroon to crimson to deep wine.
The color “red” had become the traditional monk robe color in Tibet mainly because it was the most common and cheapest dye at one point of time. Also, red is considered a ”poor” color in Tibet so the idea of wearing red symbolizes deflecting attention from oneself and focusing on compassion & kindness towards other beings – one of the main principles of Buddhism.The Buddhist robe is said to be more colorful than other sects. Interestingly it is also one of the oldest styles of fashion that is still in existence despite 2500 years having passed by since this type of attire came to be.
The simplicity of wearing such robes also symbolizes the vow taken to lead simple lives. A monk’s robe is like his uniform in a way – a symbol of his non-status that he no longer partakes in a material world. It is interesting to see that a symbol of such self imposed insignificance has become so significant with time.
They talk about global warming, space shuttles, and Bollywood. Many have nothing and want nothing except their homeland back. Most of them renounced everything they had to embrace the simplicity of a life dedicated to a religion that preaches selflessness. Everyone else including local Indians & many travelers around them complete their large circle of family, love, friendship, and support.
The controversial 17th Karamapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, one of Tibetan Buddhism’s most revered leaders and a probable successor to the Dalai Lama.
Conversation classes are hugely popular in Mcleod Ganj. A typical description of a conversation class is English-speaking travelers converse with monks/tibetans in English in order to improve their spoken English. These conversation classes are held every day for an hour or two, 5 days a week. Teaching and learning at these classes work both ways. Volunteering travelers talk about their city life & day-to-day experiences, and learn about the tibetan way of life, their struggles, their dangerous journey over the Himalayas, the sacrifices they made, and their rehabilitation in a foreign land.
Poster for a *Conversation Class* held at one of the NGOs I was volunteering at.
The monastic life feels like a big alternative spiritual get-together.