It was surreal to see the little boy I knew, now ready to become a groom.
From his days as an international volleyball player to his current stature as one of India’s most celebrated menswear designers and couturiers, Pawan Sachdeva has transformed garments into unique collectable pieces since 1999. It feels like a remarkable journey coming full circle when he designs a wedding ensemble for Raghav Chadha, his nephew and one of India’s most dashing politicians.
Can you tell us about the inspiration behind the outfits you designed for Raghav Chadha and Parineeti Chopra’s wedding?
I specifically designed outfits for Raghav at the wedding. Raghav is my nephew, and I am also his designer. Raghav has been wearing my outfits ever since he was 10, and hence I know very well about his taste and preference for simplicity. Raghav likes everything subtle and is not very fond of bling. His entire wedding trousseau was designed keeping this in mind. He has a taste for minimal, subtle, yet classy things, which also goes very well with his personality. A total of 12 outfits were made for him, keeping the above said in mind, where we did a lot of surfacing, fabric texturing, and created ensembles for him right from the very first Ardas to the Sufi night, mehndi, haldi, 90’s musical night, Wedding Lunch, Wedding, and reception.
Were there any specific challenges you faced while designing for a high-profile political figure like Raghav Chadha, keeping in mind his public image and preferences?
Every wedding that we do comes with a different set of challenges. The wedding of Raghav and Parineeti was and still is a national event, so the most challenging thing was to be in the public eye while maintaining secrecy. Everything had to be done keeping in mind Raghav’s public image. We wanted everything to come into the public and media eye at the right time, hence keeping everything intimate and avoiding public attention was the most difficult thing.
What drove your choices in terms of colour and material?
The wedding had a specific theme, and the colours were pre-decided. So, everything we made was coordinated with the chosen colours and theme.
Can you share any memorable moments or anecdotes from the design process or fittings that stand out to you?
As I mentioned before, I’ve known Raghav since he was born, and he has been wearing my creations since he was 10. This wedding was especially special for me due to the bond I shared with Raghav, and everything about it has been memorable. One thing that stands out is convincing Raghav that what we designed was not too extravagant and was appropriate for the wedding. But overall, everything is fresh and memorable. Also, Raghav is very particular about fit and colour, so that has also been a memorable experience for me.
What was Raghav Chadha’s reaction when he first saw the outfit?
Raghav was excited, happy, and elated, and so was I as his designer and maternal uncle. It was surreal to see the little boy I knew, now ready to become a groom.
Are there any specific colours that are trending for men’s ethnic wear this season?
Ivory is now the colour of the season, but pastel shades of pink, ecru, and silver grey are also trending colours for men’s ethnic wear.
What are some versatile pieces that can easily transition from daytime to evening festive gatherings?
It’s all about how you style it. You can easily transition from daytime to evening festive gathering by playing around with how you style the outfit and changing what you wear underneath. For example, transitioning from a shirt to a kurta can quickly change your look from a daytime event to a festive evening gathering.
In terms of fabrics, what should men look for when choosing festive attire for different weather conditions?
Indian weddings are all about rich fabrics like silks, dupions, and matka silks. For Raghav, we also used a lot of silks and khadi silks. Considering that weddings can be in different climates, we can always switch to fabrics that are more comfortable and breathable to wear.
What are the standout ethnic fashion trends for men this festive season, and how do they differ from previous years?
Instead of opting for a simple black suit or a traditional sherwani, men are now getting creative and experimenting with textures and colours. Traditional embroideries are being replaced by smart, subtle placements of embroidery, and men are readily accepting and embracing these changes. This year’s trend is more subtle compared to the previous year’s bling, which aligns with the broader fashion trends we see today.
If you could design an outfit for a fictional character or celebrity from a different era, who would it be, and what would the outfit look like?
I am known for my attention to detail and fit. If I were to design an outfit for a fictional character or someone from a different era, I would ensure a perfect fit, finesse, and character in the ensemble, making it visually enticing to watch.
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