Celebrating the Modern Woman: MASABA GUPTA embodying the Sabyasachi Bride
“The India I love is colourful, joyous and boisterous,
The India that I love is inclusive and revels in its diversity.
The India that I love is multidimensional.
The India that I love celebrates its authenticity. Its cultural audacity.
I try to preserve this India that I love in the work that I do.
Hoping it gets continued in glory,
Long after I have gone.”
Brides today, fawn behind this premier fashion designer; to wear his creation is a dream honed by many young girls of India. Yes, we are talking about the man of the hour- SABYASACHI MUKHERJEE. He may be renowned, but he is still the middle-class, affable Bengali, who is such a genuine and pure soul. And, you know what- that is so beautifully portrayed through his designs. Working tirelessly to promote our Indian traditions, Sabyasachi stays true to his words. His latest 2021 collection exquisitely sticks to his message, represented by the quote above. Replete with heavily embroidered and intricate works in hues of gold and red, he has redefined bridal couture, and he chose none other than another designer MASABA GUPTA as his muse.
Truly symbolizing the beauty of the inner soul, Sabyasachi has yet again created a pleasant stir while showcasing his designs through his latest campaign. Incorporating the adage, ‘beauty comes in all shapes and sizes’, this ace atelier continuously shackles stereotypes; solidly standing for women empowerment. In collaboration with the magazine giant, Condé Nast Traveller for their annual supplement Destination Wedding Guide, his latest collection is aimed to celebrate the young, dynamic and versatile women of India. His muse, Masaba Gupta embodies all that and more.
MASABA , MASABA!
Hello, lovelies. It’s definitely a great start to the week for us, as we write this pro-feminist piece for all you awesome readers. What’s the one thing that we loved about the 2021 campaign that was shot against the gorgeous backdrop of India’s royal hub, Rajasthan? (The locales may be tempting all the brides to be to get married with gravitas and aplomb). The abundant beauty and the venue may encompass most of our fairy tale weddings, giving us some serious royal vibes, but it is the concerned fashion and media connoisseurs, who should be taking a stupendous bow.
We absolutely love how beauty and body ideals are undergoing a drastic transformation. With the focus shifting to being ‘the real you’ resembling an authentic persona, we are living in an era, which honours us for being bold and effervescent always. Gone are the days where adjectives like being ‘pretty’ and ‘charming’ were associated with a woman who was thin, fair, poised, and dainty. It’s time for some sassy and badass women, ladies. Sizes or skin tones do not matter. Being a ‘damsel in distress’ is definitely not in vogue anymore.
Personifying this trend, we have the super confident and versatile fashion designer, Masaba Gupta serving as a muse for the ethereal Sabyasachi collection. The brainchild behind the eponymous label, House of Masaba, this ace designer, has grown by leaps and bounds over the years. A strong advocate of self-love and acceptance, she is unapologetic and arrogant about her brown skin. Instead of frowning upon it, she embraces it with pride, as it resonates with her varied ethnicities; an Indian mother and a Caribbean father. While donning multiple hats, be it of a supermodel, a designer, or an actress, Masaba has helmed each role amazingly.
But let’s learn a little more about her life, which makes her stand out from the crowd. Born to the yesteryear favourite and character actress 2.0 (thanks to her much deserved comeback) Nina Gupta, and the West Indies’ Cricket legend, Viv Richards (Sir Isaac Vivian Alexander Richards), Masaba was born out of wedlock. Being born to such unconventional parents, back in her childhood, she was seen as dark and alien and was a victim of bullying and racism. Born in a society, where marriage was seen as a prerequisite to have children, her mother too faced a lot of backlashes. Growing up, she did have very low self-esteem, but she soon realized that it was not worth it. The answer was in loving herself tremendously.
Having often addressed her non-quintessential physique, she has proudly acknowledged that she is “different from the rest”. In one of her Instagram posts, she proclaimed with vigour, “Nobody likes a chick with muscles. But I love it. I have my father’s Caribbean body all the way. I used to hate this same body when I was in school because I wanted to be dainty etc. Took me all those years to fall in complete, utter love with my genetics – I’ve had these arms since I was 17 or 18 maybe.” Need we say more! She is a force to reckon with. Having channelled all her negativity into developing herself, she is unstoppable, and her creativity exudes the same.
Whilst losing oodles of weight over the past year, she admitted to keeping her spirits high, brimming with undying positivity. You go, girl! In his interview with CNN Traveller, Sabyasachi heaped praises on this woman of many talents, “I don’t see Masaba only as a designer. I see her as a modern Indian woman; empowered and independent. She stands tall and proud of what she believes in. To me, she’s a youth icon.”
HELLO, INTIMATE DESTINATION WEDDINGS!
When the pandemic brought the world to a standstill, the ideas of intimate and close weddings rose in popularity. While destination weddings have been quite the rage for a while now, this trend just seamlessly blended in with the former. Also, what better place to host a wedding than the traditional, yet cultural; artistic yet regal locale of Rajasthan? Embedded in rich cultural heritage, while donning jaw-dropping, resplendent outfits complete with signature motifs, merged in a festive fervor, laughter, and frolic with loved ones by your side is just a magical start to this next chapter, isn’t it? And, that’s what this latest campaign tries to showcase.
Giving us major wedding goals, (we promise you’ll want to attend one destination wedding after reading this article, pronto), the Destination Wedding Guide 2021, is not only full of ideas to hone a wedding that is so YOU, but also gives a complete low-down of all the best hotels. Photographed at RAAS Devigarh, which is an hour’s drive from Udaipur, the destination takes us back to the erstwhile era of valiant emperors ruling their kingdoms (*ahem* Jodhaa Akbar). Creating a sweet contrast of sorts, we have the contemporary boss woman, Masaba Gupta, gracing the cover in an earthen pool filled with rose petals. Adorning heritage jewellery from the maestro’s collection, her look comprised of a thick gold Matha Patti, heavy dangling earrings, a humongous choker, and several rings and bangles. To complete the look, she looked stunning with a bunch of roses perched upon her hair, along with kohl-laden minimal makeup. She looked rustic and vintage- a true signature Sabyasachi bride.
Channelling her inner Cleopatra, Masaba did utmost justice to the different bridal attire in the following pictures, which have been serenading our sore eyes. Donning floral to the high neckline, monochrome sarees, deep-plunging lehenga cholis, in shades of magenta, royal red, mint green, yellow and maroon, with ethnic zardosi and golden embroidered designs carved on it, this vision is quite timeless- she looks like the queen she actually is. Her curves and silhouette are wondrously accentuated, commemorating the Indian body type. And, let’s not forget the heirloom jewellery abounded with eternal jadaavs, polkis, and kundans which uplift our ancient times. Oh, guys, there is always a twist, right- the cheeky, flirtatious sunglasses.
The necklaces, earrings, golden naths, and bangles are time memorabilia indeed. And we were completely besotted by the realness of it all. As Masaba quoted on her social media, “Your scars will show you the way. Mine have shown me the way”, all we’d like to tell you beauties is that just accept yourself, love yourself, grace your imperfections and flaunt it. Masaba’s blemished skin showed her life trajectory (a soldier’s war wounds, figuratively though), and made us respect her manifold.
Bold. Vibrant. Bona Fide Star. That is what this OTT celebrity is! Culminating an alchemy of modern with the traditional, she looks ferocious, and one who will simply not settle. Heralding a momentous occasion in the history of Indian fashion, we’d like to laud the sensation, Sabyasachi for his unflinching efforts for two main reasons.
Firstly, contrary to the famous belief that competitors are always on their own, we have two very celebrated and powerhouse designers coming together to boost one another (#designerssupportdesigners- we’d like to call it so). Secondly, as seen in the follow-up video, we love how he encourages and lives by inclusivity. Adapting to the 21st century, his brides are voluptuous, healthy, hourglass, and skinny; all being entwined by a common thread- self-assurance and confidence.
To sign off, all we’d like to say is that self-confidence is the new sexy. You are beautiful as you are; your personality is what makes you the hustler that you are! Woman power, always!