GOING TRIBAL WITH SAHAR ATIF

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LAWN MANIA IS IN FULL SWING AND WE JUST CANNOT GET ENOUGH. THIS WEEK, MOMINA SIBTAIN TAKES US BEHIND THE SCENES IN DELHI FOR SAHAR ATIF’S LAWN SHOOT FEATURING LISA HAYDON. FROM FANTASTIC HEAD GEARS TO DEVOURING KATHI ROLLS, HERE IS THE ENTIRE SCOOP!


Sahar Atif

What is the design philosophy of this particular collection?
The pret line provides practical and affordable clothing with a little bit of spunk to liven up an otherwise mundane day. It targets women on the go, for whom looking anything short of chic is not an option.

What is the concept for the shoot this year?
The concept of the shoot was a key component, considering that the launch of our pret line coincided in the Lawn season. I wanted something fresh and new that stood out amongst all the Lawn campaigns, with their generic pretty faces and chiffon duppattas floating around. The theme was simply High Fashion. Our campaign revolves around the global nomad. It is about making an impact; accessorizing or over accessorizing looks to transform a simple silhouette into a Fashion statement.

You went for a foreign model instead of a local model or celebrity this year, why is that?
It was a delight working with Sonya Jehan last year, an apt choice for Lawn. However, Lisa Haydon’s high Fashion look fit the bill perfectly for this collection. It is about making a statement and she can carry Fashion on her sleeve. That is the look I want to be associated with for this particular prêt line. More so, I want my clients to feel overtly fashionable in the ensembles.

What Lawn trend do you want to see die this year?
I hate that Lawn makes us all look like the cloned sheep Polly and Molly. I want individualism and personal style to be more dominant than stereotypical looks. Refined production techniques are making room for smaller capsule collections to be possible, which is something to look forward to.

Which is your favourite print from the collection?
There is a range titled ‘Birds of Paradise’, which is a personal favorite as far as prints are concerned.

Which silhouette do you want to see more of this year?
As long as hemlines are inching up, turning shirts more into tops or tunics, I’m happy.

Tell us about something exciting/funny/disastrous that happened during the shoot?
The entire mood on set was very relaxed with music playing, coffee and kathi rolls going around. Effortlessly great shots were pouring in. At one point Gautam Kalra, our stylist, played Manali trance and Lisa started dancing with half the accessories falling off her, swinging away in her own zone. That was one particular moment I really enjoyed.

What is the most difficult part of producing your own Lawn?
The huge volumes needed due to production limitations challenge Lawn. Since most brands don’t have their own distribution channels it can be hard to sell. This is one of the primary reasons I choose to stock at ChenOne, which gives me access to 33 stores nationwide.


<strongAnushka Menon Photographer

What was the concept of the shoot?
The shoot concept was split into 3 parts to cater to the 3 genres of to showcase, and so we brainstormed and took references from previous shoots I had done, and came up with something that was simple yet beautiful. The segment in print now was of tribal inspiration with a play of printed garments against printed backdrops along with strong statement making accessories and headgears.

What was the funniest thing that happened?
One fun part of the shoot was when the stylist, Gautam Kalra was trying to shoot slow motion videos of Lisa dancing on set. She was in her own zone

Was Sahar particular about any one thing? Any pet lines she would say a lot?
Sahar, the stylist Gautam and myself were in talks about this shoot for a long time and so we had planned everything in advanced and were all on the same page when at the shoot. Sahar wanted for the garment to compliment Lisa and vice versa and I think we achieved just that. However, she kept saying “Mashallah” during the shoot to the extent that we polished our Urdu/Arabic by investigating the meaning.

How was your experience working with a Pakistani designer? Was it any different than shooting Indian editorials?
She gave us the freedom to use our own creativity in terms of styling, hair, makeup, lighting and was a breeze to work with. I think when there is a strong team there is no need to dictate every move. The shoot was challenged by logistics as everyone was traveling around during the planning stages and I can’t deny coordination long distance was a bit tough. However, it all came together very well.
As similar as Pakistani and Indian Fashion may be there was indeed a particular uniqueness that set Sahar’s collection apart clearly as Pakistani, which was a nice change.

Was there any particular music that played through out?
Eeks again I don’t remember any one particular. But it would have been a play list I put together myself as I love music and always have music on my shoots!

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