'Fashion aesthetics and sensibility are about having the right approach towards clothes, fabric, design elements and the target audience'
Moving from needle and thread, fashion connoisseurs are putting pen to paper in a bid to share their experiences and expertize with the younger lot. From Ritu Beri to Ritu Kumar, Wendell Rodricks to Suneet Varma - they have all penned autobiographies to coffee-table legacy books as a pay-back to the younger generation.
To mark his 25 years in the glamour business, Suneet Varma will release his first coffee-table book in November.
“When I started 25 years ago, the Indian fashion industry was at a nascent stage. Now when you have been in the business for that long, you definitely have something to share about the industry - be it designs or the growth,” Varma said.
He has also depicted the evolution of the fashion industry in his literary work and said that the book is not necessarily just about me but it encapsulates the experiences and thoughts of 65 other people including fellow designers, industry experts to NIIFT (National Institute Of Interior and Fashion Technology) graduates.
Varma joins the league of veteran Ritu Kumar, who was perhaps one of the first few to pen a fashion bible. Titled Costumes and Textiles of Royal India, her book released in 1999 highlights the history of art, design and textiles in India.
Ritu Beri also documented her Paris experience, which shaped her career, in Firefly - A Fairytale (2006), while JJ Valaya catalogued his knowledge in the pictorial Decoded Paradox (2011).
Fashion aesthetics and sensibility are about having the right approach towards clothes, fabric, design elements and the target audience. Author of Moda Goa, designer Wendell Rodricks, says writing on fashion is easier said than done.
“I have been writing since 1988. So when I completed my research on the history of Goan costumes, I decided to write a book on the topic and the result was Moda Goa. In my case, I wanted to document a topic that was not researched. Apart from showcasing the history of Goan costumes to the nation and the world, I wrote the book to leave behind a legacy for my own state and people,” Rodricks said.
He also believes in sharing experiences with aspiring designers and his forthcoming book, Green Room, depicts the evolution of the Indian fashion industry in the last 25 years.
“Writing is just an added talent. In my case, apart from Moda Goa, I wrote my own memoir, which will be out at the Lakme Fashion Week (Aug 7). I had a story to tell about myself and the fashion industry as I saw it evolve since 1988,” he added.
One of the veterans of the fashion fraternity, Pallavi Jaikishan is working on her autobiography, describing it as a book on my work, my fashion and other work extension.
“I can’t say about the others, but my book is all about my sensibilities, things that I believe in and what works for me. It will be a kind of lifestyle book and not about culture,” she said.
For publishers, fashion bibles are a profitable business venture.
Ajay Mago, publisher of OM Books International, said, “There is a very vibrant market for fashion and fashion books in India. This is a very healthy trend. One of the finest and earliest books was by Ritu Kumar and it is certainly a book that is still in demand because of its detailed approach to Indian fashion and embroidery.”
More and more people are penning down their experiences and are eager to share these with the new generation.
Designer Samant Chauhan, who is penning a book on Chanedri fabric, said, “I am not sure if we can earn money out of it; so I am not thinking about any commercial value of the book.”
“All my juniors or new students will refer to my book if they want to know about the crafts of India,” added Chauhan. (IANS)
First day, first show: Freshers spruce up with cosmetic treatments
Fresh out of school and ahead of their first day in college, countless teenagers are queuing up at beauty clinics to undergo a range of non-surgical cosmetic procedures like nose correction, acne treatment and laser hair reduction that could help them cast the right first impression on the campus. “For youngsters, the first impression is the most important. A perfect look helps them in boosting their confidence. After school, they feel a sense of freedom which is a driving factor for them to try different things,” Swati Srivastava of beauty and wellness chain VLCC, Mumbai said.
The number of youngsters opting for non-surgical procedures has witnessed a tremendous increase of 300 per cent, notes Navin Taneja, director, National Skin Centre.
“The number of teenagers who go for aesthetic procedure is on the rise. More and more teenagers are subjecting themselves to non-surgical aesthetic procedures in order to belong and look more acceptable to their friends and the people around them,” Taneja said.
“In our centre, the number of young clients opting for non-surgical aesthetic processes has increased up to 300 per cent. Four to five years back, we used to generally get around 15 young clients per month opting for acne and acne scar treatment, removal of moles, pigmentation, blemishes procedures before going to college. But now-a-days it has increased up to 60,” he added.
But why cosmetic treatments?
“Cosmetic treatments come with a glamour factor attached to them. People today are aware that such treatments are being done and they make an individual look really good,” said Srivastava.
Some procedures that the youngsters are readily opting for include chemical peels, laser skin rejuvenation, botox, fillers, body sculpting, nose job, photo facials, laser hair reductions and lip augumentation.
“Most youngsters come for facial rejuvenation. However, whole body treatments like body toning and hair reduction procedures are also gaining popularity among the youth,” said Indu Tolani, Delhi-based skin expert.
For instance, 18-year-old Ankit Khanna has undergone rhinoplasty to get a pert nose, in time before he joins the University of Delhi to pursue his graduation.
“I was always very conscious about the shape of my nose, and when you enter college life, you come face to face with many aspects of college life; you see so many good-looking guys around so you also feel the need to be perfect. So I got the rhinoplasty done, and I am very happy with the results,” he said.
All such procedures consume around 30 minutes to one hour, depending upon various factors, especially one’s skin type. And the effectiveness?
“The effectiveness of the treatment matters on the condition of the skin. The effectiveness of all these treatments last from 18 months to life long,” said Manoj Khanna, cosmetic and plastic surgeon, Enhance Aesthetics and Cosmetic Studio, Kolkata.
The cost ranges from as low as Rs 1,000 to Rs 50,000 for complicated procedures. But something like a hair reduction laser treatment, which can be a boon to college girls splurging on waxing almost every fortnight, the cost can go into lakhs of rupees, depending on the area being treated.
But nobody seems to mind the rates.
“These treatments are here to stay for long. These treatments do not have any major side-effect; one needs to be cautious about the doctor from whom they get the treatment done. It is also recommended to stay away from sun in the initial days,” said Srivastava. (IANS)
Games : DYAD
A lot of people think that, to get by in the video game industry, you need to be backed by a million dollar budget and a roster of talented developers. Actually, the fact is, you just need two basic things – a great idea, and the right person to back it up. Take Shawn McGrath, for instance. He’s been working on his project DYAD for the last couple of years, shaping it up to be a quintessential gaming experience, but without the need for a lavish budget or office space. Now the fruits of his labors are finally out on PlayStation Network, and if this isn’t a testament to the power of independent gaming, we’re not sure what is.
Think of DYAD as a hybrid of the classic Tempest 2000 and Harmonix’s previously released Frequency and Amplitude. You travel through a fast-moving tube, linking together similarly coloured notes as a tune plays along in the background. The more notes you connect, the better your run becomes, increasing your score and, in some cases, your speed. Obviously it’s not always a smooth run, though, as you’ll have to contend with obstacles that could easily bring your successive linkings to a halt. Small additions to the play mechanics also keep things interesting over the course of the game’s 26 stages
You can probably breeze through them in an hour if you’re just trying to get by. Doing this, however, will deprive you of the pure joy that DYAD has to offer. Each stage has three stars for you to earn, based on time and score challenges. Earning all three opens up a special Trophy task that, if completed, gives you a virtual reward for your collection. That is, if you can complete it. These suckers are hard, but not impossible.
DYAD works with a trouble-free control scheme that takes milliseconds to get used to. You use the analog stick or D-pad to control your cursor around the tube, while hitting the X button to connect with notes and shoot yourself forward. The square button occasionally comes into play, but McGrath manages to keep the gameplay on a nice and simple level, without any gimmicks getting in the way. It’s stuff like this that we need to see more of – especially since Rock Band Blitz still doesn’t have a release date.
In addition, DYAD has one of the better visual presentations we’ve seen in a PSN game in some time. The use of colors is simply dazzling as you shoot through the stage, and the way it ends, with a filter slowly but surely losing focus, is actually rather cool, though you might think something’s wrong with your contact lens at first. The action moves briskly enough, and the menus are a breeze to get through.
You’ll also love the music. McGrath has gathered together a slew of worthwhile tunes that really make you want to keep playing DYAD just to hear how much better the next one sounds. It’s a soothing mix of techno and new age tunes that will make you feel good as you play. The sound effects are minimal, but not completely necessary.
On top of that, DYAD also has online leaderboards, so you can continue to chase after the best scores on the net and try to be king – or queen – of each stage. That certainly adds to the replay value.
DYAD is one of the most viscerally enthralling music/puzzle games you’ll come across, and a friendly reminder that with the right person in charge, a small project can certainly bloom into something big. We highly suggest checking it out, without hesitation.
GAME RATING: 9.0
Beauty Tips : Tips for Beautiful Lips
1. Combine white butter with saffron and apply it on your lips daily.
2. To maintain the pink colour of your lips, crush fresh red rose petals and add a little ghee to make a paste. Apply this paste on your lips and remain it for about an hour. After that, wash it with water; you will get soft and beautiful lips by applying this paste.
3. Daily night massage your lips with a mixture of honey and almond oil to prevent the drying of your lips.
4. To retain natural moisture and softness of lips, spray little powder on your hankie, put it on your lips and apply little pressure with hand.
5. If you have a problem of dry lips, then mix olive oil and vaseline and apply it on lips three to four times in a day. Take two teaspoon of coco butter and half teaspoon honey wax. In a vessel, heat wax and add coco butter. Let this mixture to become cool. After then, apply it on lips with the help of lip brush. Take water, honey, glycerin, and almond oil in equal amount and place them in a bottle. Shake the bottle to mix them well. Apply this mixture daily to get luscious lips.
6. Apply a good amount of lip balm before going to sleep at night. You can also mix some crushed sugar with lip balm; this will not only give you soft and supple lips but also make them pink and pucker. As well, try to moisturize your lips by applying lip balm after every few hours.
7. If you are bothered about your dark lips, then combine glycerin with lemon juice and apply it on your lips. Keeping this mixture overnight on lips will help to lighten it.
Book: Dark Rising, Author: Grieg Beck, Publisher: Pan Macmillan, Price: Rs.350, Pages Rs 470
The Cold War has given way to a nuclear arms race where the quest for new nuclear weapons of destruction powered by the likes of Iran and North Korea keep the big brothers on their toes.
A new breed of demolition men - armed with super powers - is ready to fight the minions of death.
The action is no longer in Russia or the US; the scene has moved to secret desert facilities in Iran where scientists are researching the latest in particle physics to generate more potent holocaust machines. In an age of god particles (Higg's Boson), it makes sense to create a simulated black hole which sucks in human volunteers, ferries them to another world and brings them back to earth, mutilated beyond recognition.
Away in the US Military Space Command, the latest surveillance technology for nuclear espionage picks up a burst of gamma radiation from the Iranian desert. An alert sounds worldwide about a possible nuclear test by Iran, the thorn on the world nuclear map.
It rings in Israel where the Mossad - the nation’s secret service - deputes a crack undercover woman agent and a nervous nuclear scientist to bust the underground facility in the ruins of Persopolis in the Iranian desert.
A tactical entente is forged between the Americans and the Israelis when they decide to take on Iran together.
Spy games have changed since the days of John Le Carre’s psychological espionage of 1950s in which the intellectual low-key government-type - endowed with a quick wit, power of observation, a sense of resignation and a gun - solves geo-political crimes in a rather Holmsian manner.
Ian Fleming’s James Bond preceded Le Carre’s quiet unassuming spy. The flamboyant spy who, stirred his dry Martini, was the first of the techno-spies embellished by modern science.
Loopholes are aplenty in Beck’s book, including major structural gaps. But the stark irony of the 21st century tale commenting on the nuclear arms race, the geopolitical tensions, relentless action backed by thorough knowledge of science and grand canvas of imagination carries Beck through.
Spies of the 21st century are creations of science tailored to track nuclear terror.
Beck’s superspy Captain Alex Hunter - Dark Rising is the second of the Alex Hunter series, picking up the thread from Beneath the Dark Ice - is a hulk who defies mortal definitions of human. He has a sharp extra-sensory perception to sniff danger, connect through mind vibes and is pumped with energy-enhancers.
Hunter when not on duty is a test-mice at the space station lab where his brain is mapped for new powers he is developing.
The spy gets a lease from his lab duty when deployed by the US government for the mission with the Israelis.
At stake is science. Hunter has to fight the simulated black hole, which is caused by an intense burst of gamma radiation which generates new particles and then implodes into a black vortex - spinning at the core with cosmic dark matter. It has a fatal magnetic pull.
Created by a team of international scientists working for Iran, it is touted by Iran as the ultimate weapon of mass destruction that could suck the world into a giant artificial black hole.
President Mosahddam, the head of Iranian nation, defies his Islamic Guardian Council (the apex religious body), invokes the Hadith and Allah to describe the black hole capsule as a gateway to heaven which will deliver mankind. He begins human trials on the black hole.
As the Americans and the Israelis close in on the site, along an alien monster from a planet of orange sky and a weak blue sun, probably brought back by the black hole during one of the experiments, the Iranian president decides to meet Allah in Jannat aboard the black hole.
The president escapes in the black hole, which passes out to another world. Alive, the president steps out into the land of orange sky and blue sun. In the distance, the human-eating monsters sulk in the mist.This is jannat, the president bursts into song. (IANS)