8 trends every fashion lover should own

Boyish Jackets

Though the Bomber Jacket has scored quite a few hits, a quick glimpse at street style across the four fashion-week destinations show that even military-inspired parkas and trenches are hot favourites at the moment.

And if you do buy this trend, DO NOT be dull and wear with denims. To really work it, wear your boyish jacket over your frilliest, girliest, flounciest skirt or dress. Another way is to throw it on over a ruffled top and distressed micro-mini denim shorts.

And that’s how you’ll create maximum impact.

hbz-street-style-nyfw-ss2017-day8-11
Shot by Diego Zuko. Image borrowed from Harper’s Bazaar – Read article here 

 

Bomber Jacket | Shot by Diego Zuko | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan
Credit: Harper’s Bazaar | Shot by Diego Zuko

Cropped Jeans

This one’s simple. Keep your skinnies aside for a moment and pull on this trendier alternative to the mom jeans. Wear with a cropped top and a statement slip-ons to get the paparazzi rolling.

New York Fashion Week Street Style | Photos by Sandra Semburg | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Week started by Shivani Krishan
New York Fashion Week Street Style | Shot by Sandra Semburg

Edgy Ankle Boots

While, kolhapuris and strappy sandals may be your safest bet, edgy ankle boots will go a lot further in scoring you extra style points.  Wear with boho minidresses or boho maxidresses depending on your boldness level and get ready for love at first ‘style’. (Stupid wordplay, I know.)

BLACK ANKLE BOOTS | PARIS FASHION WEEK STREET STYLE 2016 | VOGUE UK | CHAI HIGH IS AN INDIAN FASHION BLOG STARTED BY SHIVANI KRISHAN
CREDIT – JONATHAN DANIEL PRYCE | IMAGE – BORROWED FROM VOGUE UK | READ VOGUE’S ARTICLE HERE

Boho Dresses

If you don’t already own these, well, what the hell were you thinking? Go all out and splurge on a couple of flowing, tasselled, printed and embroidered numbers. Wear with edgy boots to turn all the right heads.

Boho Maxi Dress | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan
Credit: Harper’s Bazaar | Shot by Diego Zuko | New York Fashion Week Street Style

 

Oversized Graphic Tees

Graphic tees may be old news but teaming it with something flirty will offer a new approach to the basic. Wear it tucked into a tulle skirt to channel Maria Grazia Chiuri’s Dior Debut or choose a floral Forever 21 mini version.

From Maria Grazia Chiuri's Dior Debut | Image Credit: Vogue
From Maria Grazia Chiuri’s Dior Debut | Credit: Vogue Russia | See source here

Super-flared pants

Even though I don’t like this trend on me, style editors and front row enthusiasts seem to pull it off impeccably. Wear with an off-shoulder top and pretty kitten heels.

GREEN FLARED PANTS | PARIS FASHION WEEK STREET STYLE 2016 | VOGUE UK | CHAI HIGH IS AN INDIAN FASHION BLOG STARTED BY SHIVANI KRISHAN
CREDIT – SØREN JEPSEN/THE LOCALS IMAGE – BORROWED FROM VOGUE UK READ VOGUE’S ARTICLE http://www.vogue.co.uk/gallery/paris-fashion-week-2016-street-style

The Slip

From slip-dresses to slip-tops, the underwear-as-outerwear philosophy is back and like never before. Toughen up a slip top with leather pants or make a silken slip-dress street-worthy with a leather jacket.

SLIP DRESS WITH BLACK ANKLE BOOTS | PARIS FASHION WEEK STREET STYLE 2016 | VOGUE UK | CHAI HIGH IS AN INDIAN FASHION BLOG STARTED BY SHIVANI KRISHAN
CREDIT – JONATHAN DANIEL PRYCE IMAGE – BORROWED FROM VOGUE UK READ VOGUE’S ARTICLE http://www.vogue.co.uk/gallery/paris-fashion-week-2016-street-style
Slip top worn over white tee | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan
New York Fashion Week Street Style | Shot by Sandra Semburg

Well, that’s all for today. Happy Shopping.

 

Humans stress me. Clothes de-stress me. 

 

 

Unless ‘clothes’ refers to a short sequinned (read ugly) number. Or worse, a my pure-white shirt has a spot of mustard. That’s when humans become a breeze.

I remember when I bought my first pair of boots. I was 21, in London for the first time. And my father bought me these really chic knee-high black boots. From Aldo. And oh, I was in love.

And, like all kinds of love, with it came a new set of anxieties.

What if, I leave my shopping bag somewhere. What if my baggage gets lost in transit? And with it go my boots? What if somebody steps on it – when I am wearing it? What if, it gets fungus? What if it breaks? What if a pigeon shits on it? 

And I realised, I share a weird relationship with fashion.

Inanimate, material fashion.

A ‘spontaneous anti-depressant’ in the words of Eugene Hutz, an instant excitement kick or a happiness machine – call it what you may, just the act of putting together fresh combinations from my closet is enough to bring on that sense of achievement. “Oh, why I didn’t I ever put those two together?”

 

And, the sheer joy on seeing a movie where the star dresses just like you do!  Keira Knightley in Begin Again, anyone? Or Emilia Clarke in Me Before you?

Clothes.

 

So, I wrote a silly poem about clothes.

Here it goes.

 

Clothes.

They won’t throw a fit if you don’t call them.

They won’t taunt you when you crib.

They won’t leave you for another country.

And they won’t make you feel like you’re shit.

They’ll be there for you when you’re happy.

And they’ll be there for you when you’re low.

They’ll make you feel fabulous,

even when you shed half a kilo.

They’ll bring out your best features

And they’ll notice your new haircut.

They’ll cover-up the extra inches – oh you dark-dark chocolate sundae!

And they’ll show-off all those curves!

 

Well, folks, that’s all for today. Drink lots of tea, wear lots of dresses, and laugh a lot.

Cheers.

Shivani

What would Shivani buy? 8 things to shop right away.

Hello people,

I know I’ve been away for quite sometime. Been  busy with stuff. Something really exciting is underway. (Shhh. Tell you about that later.)

For now, here’s a Chai High guide to WHAT TO SHOP this week. Here’s a quick look at everything that’s caught my eye in the affordable fashion market.

 

What: White cotton sleep shirt

Where: Buy in online here.

How much: Rs. 1790

White Nightshirt by The Label Life | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan

 

What: Cotton off-shoulder dress

Where: Buy in online here. 

How much: Rs. 2140

Pinstripe off shoulder dress by The Label Life | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan

 

What: Basic black tee

Where: Buy it in the H&M store

How much: Rs. 699

Tip: It looks blah, but trust me, it will go a long way. Wear it tucked-in with all your skirts.

Basic black tee by H&M | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan

 

What: Organic Cotton Box Shirt

Where: Buy it online here.

How much: Rs. 1600

A box shirt in a subdued lilac hue and wispy organic cotton by The Summer House | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan

 

What: Organic Cotton Pleated Midi Dress

Where: Buy it online here.

How much: Rs. 2600

A cloudy blue, organic cotton pleated midi dress by The Summer House | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan

 

What: Organic Cotton Night Shirt

Where: Buy it online here.

How much: Rs. 2800

An organic cotton nightshirt by The Summer House | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan

 

What: Off-shoulder cotton top

Where: Buy it online here.

How much: Rs. 750

Off-shoulder top from Spring Break | Chai High is an Indian fashion blog started by Shivani Krishan

 

What: Backless maxi dress

Where: Buy it online here.

How much: Rs. 1490

A backless maxi dress by The Spring Break | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan

Well, that’s all for today.

Happy Shopping. 🙂

 

 

How I found myself through fashion.

Fashion saves me. Everyday.

Some see it as an annoying intruder, a pointless culture, and a distraction from what’s important. Others see it as an occasional indulgence meant to be partaken in, only during special occasions. And a few, like me, see it as an integral party of the everyday, a constant saviour in the journey of life.

When I was little, my mother dressed me up in smocking frocks with peter-pan collars and puff sleeves, matching ribbons for my hair – little bows, white socks, and smart Mary-Janes. I was the “well-dressed” child in every circle, never without a missing ribbon or shoe, never with snot running down my face, and never in flimsy spaghetti straps and careless hot-pants. I was quiet, well-behaved, and disciplined enough to sit with my shoes and socks, white without a speck of dirt, at parties.

I wasn’t a cute child. I wasn’t adorable or talkative. And I had no special talent apart from being able to draw – not something you can show off to your relatives about. I couldn’t dance or sing or act or mimic. I couldn’t play an instrument or say adorable things that grownups could listen to and go, “awww…”. Nope. I was quiet, I sat in the corner, played with my dolls and read. I spoke when spoken to and answered with a “yes” or “no”.

Then I went to boarding school. And the awkward pre-puberty age set in. I no longer liked frocks and I wanted to look more boyish than ever. I looked at my friends with their jeans and shorts and rubber floaters and that’s all I wanted to wear. I lost my love for pink, I lost my love for frocks and a part of me lost myself for a little while. I tried to fit into boarding school, by borrowing aesthetics from the people around me. Baggy shorts and baggier denims. The more boyish, the better. With my skinny legs, bony knees, gawky face and giant braces, nothing looked good on me. And my school uniform? That looked particularly horrid. No matter how much I tried, the grey pleated skirt refused to sit flat on my tummy, puffing up in an odd sort of way.

My rebellious hair was chopped up – “Maggie cuts her hair” style with no real definition. And I would comb through my hair – a hundred strokes every night, hoping for some semblance of straightness. I would oil, shampoo and condition it twice a week. I would buy the serums “specially formulated for dry, frizzy hair”, as the Livons of the world smiled inwardly , conscious of the giant prank they had played upon frizzy-haired believers everywhere. And none of it worked. Of course.

As I grew older, little by little I realised the reason everything looked odd on me. It wasn’t my genes or the lack of effort on my part – trust me. I tried everything.

It was because I was running after an aesthetic that wasn’t mine.

And subconsciously I began to define myself. I lathered on kohl, got a set of double piercings on my ears, and I got my skirts shortened. I began to tie my hair up in a high ponytail, and wear my skirts an inch shorter than the knees (everybody else was going for the low wasted, extra baggy-long skirt look at that time). And I gave up trying to straighten my hair. I washed my hair less, stopped combing it like an idiot.

I finally started embracing my curls.

And that’s how I made my little mark in the sea of identical uniforms. But, when it came to “coloured” clothes or clothes that weren’t uniform, I was lost. I tried long skirts, short skirts, capris and flared denims. But, nothing… nothing made me feel like me. I felt odd, my body felt sloppy and I just didn’t feel like “me”. The me who wore her smocked frocks with matching ribbons and pretty shoes. The “smartly dressed” me.

I read up the Vogues and the Cosmos, and I tried to draw inspiration… For the longest time, I blamed my weight for making clothes look odd on me. But, then again, I wasn’t really fat.

I knew I had toned legs, and so I should wear shorter silhouettes. But I had a tummy, and at that time, shops were only selling really fitted tees and body-con dresses. So, I struggled and struggled to find clothes that would flatter me. And would make me feel more “me”.

I think, it was only recently, say around 3 years back, that I discovered my aesthetic. I think it was repeated trial and error and a conscious understanding of my body-type. It was finding the middle point between comfort and style. And understanding my mind a little better. That lead me to it. And slowly I knew I was all about cottons, checks, anti-fits and comfort. Of button-down dresses, fit and flare silhouettes and skater dresses. Of bright florals, knee skimming lengths and floaty-breathables – The exact opposite of tight jeans and synthetic tops – my uniform throughout college and early years of working.

And once I found my aesthetic, I suddenly knew, no amount of taunts and jabs and magazine advice could hurt this strong extension of my being – my everyday armour. And even though plenty in India would call my style “jhalla” for it’s incredible looseness, and even though I admire those who can pull off the tight dress and stiletto look, when I look at myself in the mirror, with my  ultra faded-plaid dress and black-floppy-chappals, I know i couldn’t wear anything else – for the sole reason that it won’t fit in with me. It just won’t be me.

The deep-pockets for storing the odd lip-balm. The loose fit to cover the slight overeating at lunch. The knee-skimming length for leg-freedom. The cotton fabric to beat the humidity. And the absence of fluff to drive attention to my face rather than the dress. The dullness of colour to serve as a canvas to my personality. And the detailing of the dress, finally, to ground me sartorially and to pay homage to the talented designer.

This may seem too intense for something as seemingly light as fashion. But if you were to watch the documentary on Bill Cunningham and hear what people around have to say, you may understand things a little better.

Fashion is not just feathers and fluff and an ostentatious display of cloth for thrill. All that is advertising. Fashion is more. It’s advertising (of course), but it’s also style and craft and art and a tool that ordinary people like you and me can use to build ourselves a little brighter.

And as I found my aesthetic – an aesthetic surprisingly similar to the 5-year-old me with her plaid frocks and smart shoes – I found myself.

 

One Week Of Style

Hello generous-followers-who-actually (hopefully)-read-my-blog,

I’ve started this thing on Instagram. You know, one of those hashtag contest/activity like things. Thanks to everybody’s suggestions to do something meaningful, something with an “idea” otherwise, I’ll drown in the sea of packed-like-sardines hashtags with no real engagement.

Anyway, so I came up with this BRILLIANT idea (right!) to post a picture of what I wore for a week and (yes, so smart isn’t it) I encouraged others to share their outfits too, for the gigantic reward on being featured on MY blog. Yes, you heard me. MY blog.

And, the hashtag I came up with for this exciting, new idea *roll-eye-emoticon* was #OneWeekOfStyle.

So original.

The interesting thing in this entire story is probably the fact that every one of these pictures will be taken in the exact same spot (Don’t ask me where. Shhh…my office loo), and hence it will lead in to a fun GIF at the end.

Anyway, so since I started this thing on Tuesday, I have just put up 3 pictures on Insta right now. Here they are.

You too, can participate in this humble (but fun) initiative and after a week, won’t it be exciting to see what you wore?

You can even compare looks, hairstyles and see your varying styles. I think, it’s fun.

Day 1:

Plaid Dress: Forever 21 | Sandals: Charles and Keith

I wore my plaid school girl forever 21 dress with Charles and Keith Sandals | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan
Once in a while, it’s fun to work school girl chic. Hello quarter-life crisis.

 

Day 2:

Black basic vest: Forever 21 | Black handloom skirt: Designed by mom

I wear basics from high street labels with indigenous, handcrafted fabrics | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan
How I wore high-street with Indian handicraft. *feeling cool*

Day 3:

Midi Dress: Cotton-on | Kolhapuri Slip-ons: Linking Road, Bandra

I wore my black midi dress with slits with Gold kolhapuri slip-ons and a statement pendant | Chai High is an Indian Fashion blog started by Shivani Krishan
Does it really look like I forgot to wear pants? Because, people often think I did. Also I wouldn’t admit it, but in my head I agree with those who called it a kurta without salwar. 

In one shot, here are my 3 looks.

 

To participate, all you have to do is upload your pictures on Instagram using the hashtag #OneWeekOfStyle.

Chalo, I got to go and work.

tata.

One hostel room please.

When you’ve been in hostel a lot, without realising it, you begin to get inspired by it. So much so, that even your aesthetics assume a boarding school vibe.

Actually, what am I saying ‘you’ for? It’s me whose sensibility has been taken over by a hostelesque vibe. 1 single bed, 1 cupboard and 1 study table, please. Yes, leave those shelves bare. Yes, I know they’re ‘shelves’ but please do not stuff them with your belongings. Leave the counterpane on. And yeah, do pick up your shoes. (Joote-chappal-uthao-joote-chappal-uthao).

_ _ _

I recently moved into a new house. A new room in a new house, to be precise. I wanted my space. I am almost 27. And I have been living with girls for far too long ( 18 years) to be excited by late-night-gossip and girlish banter. So, April this year, I decided to move to a place where I’d get my own room, my own privacy, so that after years of sharing room-space, finding wet towels on my bed and dealing with aesthetics that didn’t match my own (read piles of laundry fighting for space on the bed and cigarette ash competing for attention on the floor), I would finally be able to keep my room the way I always wanted to.

Turns out, my aesthetics (contrary to what I believed) are nowhere near that of interior decorators and people with supposedly “good taste” in high society. It’s more of a clinically clean, orderly aesthetic, with books stashed so neatly in their shelves that I hesitate before reaching out to read one. In the fear that I might upset the entire beauty of it.

My own room | Orange curtains from http://www.ebay.in/ and Fabindia bedcover from Snapdeal | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan

In anticipation of this shift, I got 4 paintings of mine framed. One of which you can see in the picture. As for the other? Well… well, turns out my landlady is so particular about her interiors that we aren’t allowed to hammer nails! *sniff* And to think that hanging my priced paintings up was one of the reasons to shift home…

Anyway, not to be deterred (since I had already moved in and there was no other option), I looked for ways to hang stuff without hammering nails and after reading one of those listicle-thingys (1o ways to…), I decided to ignore everything I read and just placed my drawings on a cardboard box masked as a table by putting a cloth over it (yes, as boarding school people, we do have a trick or two up our sleeves. “Jugaad” as they call it here), and lo and behold, I was satisfied.

My framed sketches placed against a wall on a makeshift table of cardboard boxes and cloth | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan

Yes. Even I don’t like the floors. It gives the room a hospital-hostel-bathroom feel and inspite of my acquired hostel aesthetic,  I am still a diehard fan of wooden floors, but yes, like I mentioned in a previous post, my salary wasn’t getting any higher, so I just told myself “beggars can’t be choosers”, packed my bags and moved in.

My very orange room with a messy bed and scattered books | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan

 

The first thing I did, was buy those orange curtains. I wanted my room to feel really bright, and welcoming and I read somewhere (I think it was one of those colour therapy articles) that orange stands for vitality and energy and people suffering from depression must wear orange underwear or something like that; and even though I neither own orange underwear (the only one I did got flicked in boarding school when I was in 10th std and irritated I was one entire semester as I really loved that one), and neither am I suffering from depression (even though there are days when I am convinced that I am), I still chose to go ahead and envelope my room in vivid splashes of oranges, yellows and reds.

But before I changed my sheets to orange, I had a blue and white check cover on it.

Weird, as it is, I only recently realised that my hostel room at MICA (the first image) is strikingly similar to my new room (the second image). So much so, that even the bedcover used is the same, not to mention the large window on the opposite wall and the bed on the left and the white tiled floors.

That’s why I changed my covers. Get it? Get it?

 

It’s almost subconscious I’d say, that I gravitate towards smaller rooms with single beds and large windows. Maybe it’s a desperate means to grasp my younger, freer days. Or maybe it’s a subconscious preference for clean, clinical spaces, thanks to 10 years of boarding school life. I really don’t have an answer.

However, it only came to light when I showed my friends the picture of my new room, and all they said was that it reminded them of their hostel rooms.

So then I went and dug around for old college pictures. And, man was I surprised at the uncanny resemblance?

Which comes to prove that hostel life has indeed left a deeper mark on my subconscious than I have realised. From choosing a room that takes me back in time, to probably eating food that reminds me of school (Maggi), I am drenched in nostalgia so deep that I can barely even notice it.

And the fact that my new room’s scrubbed clean, single-bed, no-air-conditioning, clinical vibe is in fact inspired from my years living in different parts of the country, in no way should be taken lightly. It’s definitely worth a study, I’d say?

It’s weird, and I hope to discover other aspects of my personality that have been shaped by hostel life. And yes, I will definitely blog about them too (provided, it’s nothing embarrassing). 😉

_ _ _

Anyway, it’s getting late. In case you don’t follow me on Instagram, do click here. You’ll find me putting up pictures of well-dressed people interspersed with some random out-of-blog shit like today’s post.

“Shit” you’ll like. (hopefully, at least).

Chalo, I’m going to read my book. Bye.

(Yes, guess I got the abruptness from boarding school too. We would just pop into another dorm and pop out saying,”Chalo, I’m going to read my book. Bye”.)