Sat, Dec 10, 2016 | updated 04:17 PM IST

Assamese fashion designer establishes his versatile presence in world of fashion

Updated: Sep 18, 2016 08:30 IST

By Chandrakala Choudhury

New Delhi [India], Sept.18 (ANI): People of the northeast have always been inclined towards fashion. Fashion designers from the region have already outshone their contemporaries from other parts of the country in this field.

One such name doing the rounds is Dipankar Kashyap of Assam, who has set a fashion designing benchmark by giving a new dimension.

Known for his versatility, Dipankar has carved out a space for himself with his astounding sense of design.

Kashyap completed his post graduation in English literature from the University of Pune, but as luck would have it, he chose fashion designing as a career. His journey began when he arrived in New Delhi in 2007 to work as a stylist.

Later, he went on to hold fashion shows, showcasing some of his unique designs, a marriage of traditional colours and designs of the northeast. Ever since, he has showcased his work at numerous national level shows.

Kashyap told ANI,"Initially, when I wanted to be a designer there were lots of no's at home, they were just wondering after so much of education, why I needed to be a designer or a tailor, those days there were very few designers from the northeast. In fact, there were none. People were like why I wanted to be designer, but I proved to them that by being a designer you can earn your livelihood too."

"But I didn't lose my base. I have launched myself as a designer and have been organising shows, and apart from that, I concentrate on three departments -- designing, styling and choreography," added Dipankar.

Being associated with the fashion industry in one way or the other for the past 25 years, Kashyap has styled some of the most beautiful women in the country, including former Mrs. World, Aditi Gowatrikar; former Miss World, Priyanka Chopra; actress Raima Sen; and model-actress Koena Mitra, among others.

He stands out for his penchant for blending north eastern fabrics and textures, especially those from Assam, including hand-woven cotton, muga, pat (mulberry silk) and eri (endi). Kashyap designs for both men and women.

"In Assam, when we talked about Mekhela Chador from the time of Mahatma Gandhi, also Mahatma Gandhi said 'Weavers of Assam weave dreams in their looms'. So taking that further, the design, the motives, there has been lots of modification in the traditional designs also, and Mekhela chador, I would say looks more beautiful than a saree when a woman wears it," said Kashyap

He added that national and international acclaimed designers are experimenting with the fabrics of Assam. They make kurtis, gowns and the fabrics and silk of Assam has been turned into different outfits, the Muga has been handloomed and has become very expensive. There have been lots of modification of Muga also. In fact, I myself have done so much of modification in Muga. I have designed tube dresses, gowns, Nehru jackets out of it. Muga and pat of Assam has gained immense popularity and outsiders really appreciate it.

The multi-faceted Dipankar has also choreographed several fashion shows at the international level. He has also worked as a model coordinator for various campaigns, which has contributed to his sound robust understanding of the industry.

When asked about his style mantra, Kashyap told ANI that carrying of a particular look confidently is very important and today's girls also should wear something which they are comfortable in.

"Everyone doesn't want to be dressy or look nice all the time; the best option is a white t-shirt or a shirt with a pair of denims; that is the best option if you don't know what to wear, wear only that, anything in white looks good," he said.

Kashyap also plays an integral part in the Northeast India Fashion Week and often organises shows for it. Apart from all this, Kashyap also has an exclusive line of club shirts called 'Look No Further' which has been attracting youngsters desiring funky styles.

"People have liked my exclusive brand of shirts and brought a lot. I had Michael Jackson printed shirts and one of my friends brought a few shirts for Tiger shroff as he is a big fan of Michael Jackson", added Dipankar.

Currently Kashyap is supervising a grooming school in New Delhi 'Walking Toes', run by Lalit Sharma in collaboration with Gagan Joshi.

It is worth mentioning that Bollywood actresses Zareen Khan and Koina Mitra have also walked the ramp wearing some of the outfits designed by Dipankar.

Besides these, Kashyap has also directed a film called 'Tides' in English and Hindi, based on human relationships from a woman's point of view. The film made Kashyap the first fashion designer to venture into filmmaking from the region.

He has also directed Assamese films featuring some of the renowned actors of the industry like Zerifa Wahid, Ravi Sharma, Kopil Bora, Hira Neog, Chetana Das and Mridula Baruah.

Kashyap is keen to place the northeast firmly on the national and international fashion map. His work is also likely to give a major boost to Assamese weavers and highlight the lesser-known ethnic tribal designs of the region. (ANI)