It’s started already. We got our first one in the mail yesterday. Soon, it will be an Owl Post-style flood of envelopes, announcing the nuptial knots and tangles that our friends insist on getting into this year. Yeah yeah, we’re happy for them and all.
But sewed on to all those wedding invites, is the stress of buying Indian clothes. Ones that usually cost an arm and a leg. You may not have received a card yet, but you should bookmark Karmik for when you do, a new multi-designer store in Juhu that retails affordable lines by big couturiers.
Launched a month ago by the owners of Kimaya, Karmik houses salwar kameezes, anarkalis, tunics and saris (priced between Rs 3,000 and Rs 10,000) by ten designers, including JJ Valaya, Tarun Tahiliani, Abraham & Thakore, Rohit Bal and Anamika Khanna. And while they do stock some fun pieces, here’s what we think they need to do to lessen the impending wedding stress.
Pret Stop Boys
Karmik is divided into three sections—ground level, mezzanine and basement. Unexpectedly, you are not blinded by sequins and bling when you enter the store. Instead, bright, jewel tones stand out against warm wooden flooring and off white walls. A chandelier lights up glossy fashion magazines, carelessly strewn on a granite table. A-posing views?
The ground space features Ranna Gill salwar-churidar sets in dull red, blue and teal, as well as anarkalis by Karmik’s in-house brand. Squeezed within Ranna Gill’s collection was the only sari rack at the store, with eight to ten wraps by JJ Valaya and Anamika Khanna. While the Valaya ones in synthetic black with bronze sequins were blah, we loved the meadow green net sari with a tikka-red pallu and sequined-floral motifs (Rs 7,699). We’d also pick up the in-house brand’s pretty lemon candy sleeveless salwar-churidar with bright pink collar embroidery.
The mezzanine has more suits by Valaya (again with the bluish-black colours and bronzed embroidery), Karmik and Shyam Narayan Prasad, whose cotton sets in gunmetal silver were just okay. What did catch our eye though was a deep purple, long-sleeved anarkali kurta with silver and gold crystals sewn together at the empire line waist, by Rocky S (Rs 9,999). Kurtis and tunics – chiffon ones by am:pm, Gopi Vaid’s gota work versions - starting at a mere Rs 3,400 are relegated to the basement.
Besides the five or six pieces that caught our attention, the rest of the stock at Karmik is quite lackluster, and suggests a strong need for more creative styles. We also noticed that ensembles from some of the big names on their list - Abraham & Thakore, Gaurav Gupta, Tarun Tahiliani and Rohit Bal – haven’t arrived yet. RSVP soon, designers. There’s a card in the mail, and we still have nothing to wear.
Getting there: Karmik, opposite Kimaya store, Juhu Tara Road, Juhu, starting at Rs 3,000.
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