I discuss how Ekam’s Winter/Festive 2016 collection reminds me of Chanel Spring Summer 2016 RTW collection in an interview style post.
Shilpa Ahuja: Thanks for having me on your show, Sarcastic Shilpa. I’m honored. And you can drop the act now. Everyone knows you are just a version of me, and I can never be sarcastic.
Sarcastic Shilpa: Well, Shilpa Ahuja may not be, but I’m not Shilpa the-worst-Indian-fashion-blogger Ahuja. So, I don’t know what you’re talking about. Anyway, because no one ever reads her blog, let me begin by introducing her. Shilpa here writes about fashion trends, reviews and advice. She also pretends to understand fashion and, everyone make air-quotes with me, “inspire confidence”.
Shilpa Ahuja: Thanks for that lovely introduction. And it’s not that no one reads my blog, we actually get more than a hundred thousand visitors every month and we work with …
Sarcastic Shilpa: Okay, so let’s keep moving, because our audience is eagerly waiting to know about topic at hand. Our topic of discussion for tonight is a controversial one – Ekam vs. Chanel – A Dreadful Replica or a Happy Coincidence? So Shilpa, for those of us who don’t know, Ekam is…?
Shilpa Ahuja: Ekam is a new name in the Indian fashion industry. Armaan Randhawa’s label is going to present its first collection in Lakme Fashion Week Winter/Festive 2016. I happened to get a sneak-peek at their upcoming collection at the model fittings last week in Mumbai. You can view my video of the secret previews of LFW on my blog.
Sarcastic Shilpa: Can you tell us what Ekam means? Am I pronouncing it right?
Shilpa Ahuja: Well, I’m afraid I don’t know any more details about the design house.
Sarcastic Shilpa: Where is it based? Does it have a website or a Wikipedia page?
Shilpa Ahuja: Err …
Sarcastic Shilpa: Anything?
Shilpa Ahuja: …
Sarcastic Shilpa: So a budding Indian fashion house we know nothing about, and you’re making a hot topic out of it by accusing it of stealing ideas from Chanel. That’s a serious allegation – one that hardly encourages a young designer of our country – way to go! Apart from wasting our time, what other factor inspired you to come up with such an accusation?
Shilpa Ahuja: Well, the latest collection uses large and bold motifs and patchwork, but some specific details stand out. Texts like “Power” and “Make Art Not War“. This is appallingly reminiscent of Chanel Spring Summer 2015 collection that was presented like an organized rally, where models took to the street with slogans , including “Make Fashion Not War“. Additionally, Grazia magazine stated this about Ekam’s latest collection in an article: “Ekam aims to make a strong case for modern designs with a marked sense of rebellion associated with the young and the restless.” The theme and the slogan makes for a striking and unmissable similarity.
Sarcastic Shilpa: So rebellion theme and one slogan- that’s all your opinion is based on? No wonder bloggers are not given the same respect as journalists. Rang de Basanti and The Legend of Bhagat Singh are both based on rebellion and both use the slogan, “Inquilab Zindabad”. Does that mean they are both replicas of one another?
Shilpa Ahuja: Uh, Rang De Basanti is inspired by Bhagat Singh’s story so…
Sarcastic Shilpa: And anyway, the slogan reads “Make Art Not War”, not “Make Fashion Not War”. So clearly, you are misinformed here. This is obviously a very original and unique collection that has nothing to do with Chanel SS15. Please. You are wasting everyone’s time.
Shilpa Ahuja: I also made a collage comparing the two designs…
Sarcastic Shilpa: Other than the two factors of the slogan and the rebellious theme, I see no similarity. And as I understand it, you’re the blogger who have given bad reviews to fashion icons like Manish Malhotra and Gaurav Gupta. You even wrote that Gaurav Gupta’s Autumn Winter 2015 Couture Collection reminded you of Elie Saab FW16 collection.
And on top of that, your review on Vasundhara Mantri’s Winter 2015 collection focused solely on how it “reminded” you of Valentino FW15 collection. Is that why they never invite you to their fashion shows?
Shilpa Ahuja: Well, I wrote what I saw. And no I don’t think that’s the reason.
Sarcastic Shilpa: In fact, our audience even tweeted me to state that your negative review on Dior’s Spring Summer 2016 RTW collection was so harsh that it drove Raf Simons to resign from his position as the Creative Director.
Shilpa Ahuja: Well you just said no one reads my blog. So that sounds contradictory. And technically, you’re me. So technically, you wrote those reviews too.
Sarcastic Shilpa: That’s preposterous. If I’m you, then are you implying that you are interviewing yourself? Who does that?
Shilpa Ahuja: Apparently a blogger whose blog no one reads.
Sarcastic Shilpa: This is the Sarcastic Shilpa Show. I’m the only one who gets to be sarcastic here. Before this show gets any more dramatic, let’s wrap up our discussion. I would have thanked you for coming to our show, but I think I’ll pass, And for the rest of you, do you agree with Shilpa Ahuja’s theory? Let us know in the comments. Until next time, ciao!
Shilpa Ahuja a designer and entrepreneur. She is the editor-in-chief of ShilpaAhuja.com, which she founded with the goal of inspiring confidence in the modern working woman through fashion.
Fashion has traditionally been for the rich, white, thin woman. That’s how it evolved over centuries and that’s how it’s been represented in fashion media. But Shilpa believes that with the changing role of women in the society, fashion has changed, too. She believes that fashion is for everyone, regardless of their age, gender, color, body type and background. So she translates runway fashion into easy style advice that one can incorporate into their daily lives.
Shilpa’s work has been published in the University of Fashion blog and Jet Airways magazine. She is also an artist, illustrator and cartoonist. She is also the creator of Audrey O., a comic series that represents the lifestyle of millennial women. She enjoys creative writing and world travel. Her art has been exhibited at Harvard Graduate School of Design and the Aroma Hotel, Chandigarh and been published in Chandigarh Times.
Originally from Chandigarh, Shilpa also has a professional degree in architecture and has worked in interior project management. She is also the author of the book “Designing a Chinese Cultural Center in India”. Shilpa has a Masters in Design Studies degree from Harvard University. For feedback and questions, please email [email protected]