Bibi Russell delves into Baul culture to create modern dresses

Updated: Sep 17, 2012, 16:57 PM IST

Kolkata: Bangladeshi model-turned-fashion designer Bibi Russell brought Bengal`s Baul tradition onto the ramp, seamlessly blending it with contemporary trends to create dresses with indigenous textile materials at the ongoing Signature Premier Fashion Week here.

With Baul song `Dhanyo dhanyo boli tare" playing in the background, models walked the ramp draped in yellow and green robes, some holding the ektata, a stringed musical instrument used by bauls.

"I hail from Kusthia in Bangladesh where the air resonates with Baul music and Baul culture even now. This is my effort to showcase the cultural treasure common to Bangladesh and Bengal."

Russell said not only the Baul culture was imbibed in the fashion show, the colour green had also been used in the dresses extensively.

"Whenever you step into the rural areas of either Bengal or Bangladesh, you will see green everywhere," said Russell, who has acted in Goutam Ghose`s award-winning film "Moner Manush", a biopic on the wandering minstrel Lalon Fakir.

Asked about the absence of any showstopper, Russel said, "Having been a model once myself, I do not believe in introducing someone not directly connected with the fashion segment just to grab more eyeballs."

Russell said she does not subscribe to the idea of bringing a film actor or anybody from non-modelling background onto the ramp.

"For me, the USP of my show remains the models who are the real stars of any catwalk."

The clothes - tunic, tops, cotton sarees - and the accessories were hand-woven and made from recycled materials, she explained.

Earlier, well known fashion designer Soumitra Mondal also lined up cotton handloom sarees with Bhatiali songs (songs sung by boatmen), playing in the background.