Khaas Baat : A Publication for Indian Americans in Florida


Kiran Bahl


What a romantic month, Happy Valentine’s Day to one and all! As we notice more hearts flying throughout, two souls uniting as one, and major RSVPs listed at posh restaurants, we should also take notice of THE Manish Malhotra.

His designs are already a major influence in Indian fashion, even more now. Known for his flowy, pastel-shaded, and semi-sheer sari and lengha looks, Malhotra isn’t just a favorite Bollywood celebrity designer. He’s also spreading his style globally and instilling further inspiration too.


Heavily sequined pieces are temporarily taking a backseat in Indian fashion. Besides lace, crochet and patta (heavily foiled or patch-worked) embellishments as ‘borders’ to outfits, embroidery work is the trend now! Malhotra mostly fortifies this look in his creations. Thick thread, zari and puff work is the new flash. Contrast-colored sewed workings provide an extra formality to your sari or suit.

Sequins are full of sparkle. Wearing a lengha or churidaar to a wedding or formal dinner party automatically lets you assume lots of shimmer and shine. The new look, however, encourages something I like to call “twinkles.” Similar to the popular sparkles look, “twinkles” are an understated version. Lightly scattered stones or sequins provide just the right touch to brighten your look. They’re especially effective when they’re the same color as your outfit. A pale yellow churidaar with white embroidery and small yellow “twinkles” of sequins throughout the dupatta is so angelic!


Every Malhotra movie or collection involves one sensual, one important piece of clothing – the sari. That too, a sari made of the softest chiffon, or the most refined net. Flowy, drapey and semi-sheer, these fabrics conjure romanticism at their mere sight.

A sea green or sky blue sari in chiffon or net, along with a simple blouse is girl-next-door meets modest glamour – just perfect.


Another stimulation from Malhotra? Pastels! Coincidentally, pastels work beautifully for the coming season. Colors are extreme this coming period, throughout spring. Palettes are either drenched in neon bright, sharp with graphic black and white, or iced in dreamy pastels.

Cream and pink shades take the lead. Vanilla cream saris and dust pink lenghas are stealing scenes all over wedding receptions and galas. Think dark is the way to go for night events? Not anymore! In fact, you’ll stand out regally among the deep and bold in a pastel shade for an evening occasion.

Happy Valentine’s Day once again. Enjoy the romantic mood with your near and dear ones. Not necessarily a significant other, celebrate with those you truly love – your family, your friends, even yourself! Be in love, be in peace and be in happiness now and always. And, as always, remember to ‘gro with syle’!

Kiran Bahl of Gro Styles, “An Indian Boutique” in Tampa, Orlando and Sunrise, can be reached at (813) 843-9040, e-mail kiran@grostyles.com or visit www.facebook.com/grostyles

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