Sumaya Khan dishes on how to dress the bridal squad
After a fairly successful debut of her eponynous couture label this summer, Sumaya Khan is excited about introducing her cold weather prêt and bridal lines. The jet-setting superwoman who is also a well-respected make-up artist (how many Bangladeshi MUA’s can claim Academy Award-winning actress Tilda Swinton as a repeat customer?) and somehow manages to hold down a career teaching law at LCLS, sits down with Avenue T to give us a preview of her collection, and to help us style the ladies on the bride squad.
Colours of the season
Her first collection showcased a love for rococo style – pastels, florals, feathers and pearls in breezy, breathable organic fabrics like cotton, muslin, and linen. Winter demands richer colours and heavier texture, so she’s breaking out the jewel tones, the velvets and silks, and the heavy embroidery work. “I’m still keeping some summer colours, because our winters are short and I personally like longevity in my wardrobe, so I imagine my clients would too,” Sumaya says, adding that she keeps in mind budget-conscious fashionistas who want to look good without breaking the bank.
Sumaya Khan Couture A/W 2018 capsule collection:
• Fringed cape-saris in muslin and chiffon
• Dhoti Kameez
Glamming up the girls
While the lady of the hour is undoubtedly the bride, she also needs the important women in her life to sparkle. Sumaya Khan has some creative ideas on dressing them up.
“I’d love to see the sister bring in a little bit of the old, and a little bit of the new. Team your mother or your grandmother’s sari with a funky new blouse, or drape the old sari in a daring new way, and make a cool statement.” Sumaya also suggests adding texture to the look with a velvet shawl or a capelet. “The heirloom sari is such a lovely way to tie in the relationship between the generations of women”
Sumaya is not a believer in the tendency for the older women in the family to take the back seat during an event like this. “She’s birthed and raised the bride, people will be coming up to congratulate her, and she’ll have hosting duties. The Mamma should be done up with pride.”
In a bold reversal of what she suggested for the sister, Sumaya suggests putting the mother in a typically more youthful ensemble of a gharara or sharara, with a regal velvet shawl and discreet polki diamonds. “I’m thinking about the Begums of decades past, and that timeless elegance that they embodied” she explains.
Bridesmaids and besties
Brides these days provide a colour scheme for their parties, so it’s obviously important to at least try and go with their wishes. For friends of the bride, there is actually a lot more flexibility in what they can wear. “While it’s never cool to upstage the bride, I don’t see why you can’t dress down your own bridal outfit and give it another spin. Go for minimal makeup, a relaxed hairdo, discreet bling, and comfy kolapuris, and you’ll get a few wears (and stories!) out of that outfit you spent so much on.”