The husband-and-wife duo, who have dressed the likes of Beyoncé and Priyanka Chopra, is conducting its first Canadian runway show in Vancouver.
When news surfaced in December that Beyoncé would be performing at the pre-wedding bash of Isha Ambani, businesswoman and the daughter of the wealthiest man in India, people had questions. Namely, how rich do you have to be to have Beyoncé perform in the lead-up to your nuptials? Filthy rich, as it turns out, since the pop star reportedly regaled guests with something closer to a private concert, one complete with renditions of classics like “Crazy in Love” and, of course, multiple outfit changes. One of the designers behind Bey’s three extravagant looks that evening? Falguni Shane Peacock, a Mumbai-based luxury label which provided a bespoke bodysuit bedazzled with all sorts of gold embellishments and gilded fringe. (Bey complemented the piece with a statement necklace and a pair of glittering thigh-highs.) But if the name doesn’t ring a bell, Falguni Shane Peacock’s other works surely will. Weeks before Ambani’s wedding, Shane and Falguni Peacock—the husband-and-wife duo behind the brand—dressed actress Priyanka Chopra for the reception of her marriage to American recording artist and former JoBro Nick Jonas. In March, the couple also created a stunning mermaid-style gown for Beyoncé to wear to the 2018 Wearable Art Gala, and they’re responsible for the floor-length black frock the singer sports in her music video for “Formation,” too. The Peacocks’ other celebrity clients include Jennifer Lopez, Rihanna and Lady Gaga, and, in recent years, they’ve made a name for themselves crafting exquisite formalwear for South Asian brides. Falguni Shane Peacock created a custom bodysuit for Beyoncé ahead of Indian heiress Isha Ambani's wedding in December. (Photo: Falguni Shane Peacock) That is to say, if you’re unfamiliar with Falguni Shane Peacock, it’s time to get acquainted—a task that will be made all the easier when the Peacocks arrive for their first runway show in Canada during Vancouver’s second annual South Asian Fashion Week from March 1 to 3. Falguni Shane Peacock’s participation is a major coup for SAFW’s organizers, who came together last year with the goal of showcasing contemporary South Asian attire that goes “beyond Bollywood.” Indeed, as the Peacocks’ work—and that of other South Asian designers—illustrate, it’s no longer just saris, kurtas and intricately embroidered lehengas being exported from countries such as India and Pakistan. The region is home to a vibrant fashion industry, which produces ready-to-wear, couture, bridal-wear and everything in between. “Last year, we showed all local designers,” notes Cindy Khella, one of four cofounders of SAFW. “So, this year, to have some international names, is huge.”
Falguni Shane Peacock’s participation is a major coup for SAFW’s organizers, who came together last year with the goal of showcasing contemporary South Asian attire that goes “beyond Bollywood.”At SAFW, attendees can expect to take in more than a dozen fashion shows by international designers, like Falguni Shane Peacock and Pakistan’s celebrated Deepak Perwani, as well as local businesses such as House of Raina, Bombay Couture and Sim and Saara. Among the offerings on display will be men’s and women’s garments, as well as jewellery and accessories, all of which marry traditional South Asian handicrafts and flourishes with more Western silhouettes and cuts—making them extremely versatile for everyday dressing, says Khella. “We’d like to get that point through,” she emphasizes, “that it is very wearable.” Pakistani designer Deepak Perwani crafts both traditional and contemporary South Asian attire for men and women. (Photo: South Asian Fashion Week) SAFW will also feature an on-site showroom, where attendees can get up-close and personal with the garments they see on the runway. Khella hopes that this will instill in viewers a deeper appreciation of the hard work and technique behind each piece. Guests are welcome to make purchases at the showroom, which will stock a curated selection of local beauty and jewellery brands, too. “The fabrics are really rich; the embroidery has been refined over thousands of years,” says Khella. “Once you actually get in there and touch it and feel it… you get an essence of how much work it takes.” New to this year’s SAFW is an art gallery lounge, where attendees can peruse a curated selection of art pieces that run the gamut from canvases to pieces of poetry. Indian, Pakistani, Afghan and Bangladeshi cuisine will be available at an on-site café. Guests are encouraged to rock South Asian or South Asian–inspired garb to the shows. In fact, for Farah Hasan, another SAFW cofounder, one of the best parts of the event is the street style. The group has plans to expand SAFW into a full-fledged seven-day affair—hence the name—once they’ve garnered sufficient support. “I feel so proud when I see so many non–South Asian celebrities and people incorporating South Asian fashion into their daily lives or wardrobes,” says Hasan. “I feel that Vancouver is ready… to take South Asian fashion to the next level.”
South Asian Fashion Week
When: Friday, March 1—Sunday, March 3
Where: Plaza of Nations, 750 Pacific Blvd.
Cost: Tickets start at $25 online, and include access to runway shows and showrooms
More info: safw.ca