Heels with Nakashi work on wood (With Images)

August 20th, 2011 - 1:42 pm ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, Aug 20 (IANS) If you feel that shoes are the most important part of your look and being different is your attitude, then all you need is a pair of heels styled by shoe designer Rohan Arora, who will present his collection “Leela” at the Lakme Fashion Week (LFW) Sunday.

Kolkata-based Arora has designed 16 pairs that represent an amalgamation of street-style fashion with old vintage charm and comprise shoes with heels that have intricate hand-crafted Nakashi work.

“This season, in my collection ‘Leela’, the colours and the hues are very street style but the heels have got a very old vintage charm to them. The heels are basically made of wood and Nakashi work has been done on it,” Arora told IANS in an interview.

“The process is that wood is cut in the shape of the heel, then Nakashi work is done on it and then it is hand painted in a way that the work is highlighted. This is complete hand work and I got people from Jaipur, Saharanpur and one guy from Kashmir to make them.”

“They have been working on these 16 pairs of shoes for almost two months. This takes a lot of time because it is very intricate work. In today’s time, it happens a lot in Jaipur, but it’s mostly on jewellery. But I have got it done on wood for shoes,” Arora added.

The art of Nakashi is believed to have been brought to India by the Mughal emperors who roped in Usta artists who knew about this craft. Nakashi art usually comprises bright hues (most primary colours) with a predominance of red in the background. They are easy to relate to as the themes and stories are familiar, drawn from the storehouse of ancient literary and folk traditions.

The designer used traditional motifs of peacocks, abstract flowers, butterflies, parrots and fish on the heels, that included wedges and blocks, to make the collection authentic.

As far as durability of the shoe is concerned, Arora swears by it.

“The heels are completely durable because they are made of mahogany as Nakashi work is best done on this kind of wood. In fact, we spent almost two weeks trying to figure out which is the best wood that can be used. We made small samples with American pine, mahogany and Kadam wood. But it came out the best on mahogany, so we went ahead with that,” the designer explained.

Arora also pointed to the designs on the upper part of the shoes, which cost anywhere between Rs.5,000 and Rs.15,500.

“On the upper part of the shoes, I have used corduroy which is screen printed and block printed. For the lining, I’ve used sheep skin, which is supposed to be the softest and the best inner lining possible,” he said.

“Then, I have also used a lot of beads and trinkets to give it a street-style look,” he added.

Arora also stressed that he has designed the collection in a way that’s wearable and appealing to people from different walks of life and different age-groups.

“This season, the one thing that I have taken care about is the wearability factor. It is a very global collection and anyone can relate to it, whether 15 or 45 years of age. It has the potential to appeal to women of different ages,” said the designer.

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