“Crop” it…. this Summer!!!

Rupika Chopra in a Crop Top

Crop Tops are back to sizzle again this summer with vibrance and style. Crop Tops are also known as Half Shirt, Midriff Top or a Cut Off Shirt. Crop Tops are my favourite this season. They are simple, chic and make any outfit cool. It reveals the midriff and makes one look exotic. Cleavage is passe’ and MIDRIFF IS IN!!! With all the throwbacks to the 90’s trending right now, crops are soaring temperatures. This summer grab your crop tops and flaunt them galore because baring the midriff is in. It is a trend that is here to stay and that makes it classic!!

Crop Tops go way back in the history of Fashion and it gained prominence in the 1930’s and 1940’s. It was largely confined to swimwear at that time. But the style drew much admiration and saw a revival due to the popularity even in the 1990’s. The Cropped shirt was originally created by men for men. Men used to cut their T – shirts short and flaunt their midriffs at the gym. This trend was picked up by the Eastern part of the world by the belly dancers…who captured much attention flaunting their waists.

Rupika Chopra in an Off shoulder Crop Top by GADO GADO

It was only in the 1940’s that the crop tops were accepted as a fashion trend in the West, due to the prevailing conservatism that depicted the exposed midriff as immodest. The young adults loved them and wore it in fancy styles with shorts, skirts and pants. The fact that Cut Off Tops accentuate the slimmest part of a woman’s waist and made them feel sexy, as it defined their figure perfectly, it became a sensation. They became popular among the people and many cord – sets were being worn as well. Cut Off Tops became a part of the Hippie Movement of the 60’s wit floral prints and high waisted flared denims. I still love the look and wear it quite often as it brings out the Bohemian in me. Thanks to the sexual revolution models and actresses like Jane Birkin, Jean Shrimpton, Anne De Zogheb, etc. who started knotting their blouses on their ribs in a relaxed boho style, completely setting the fashion scene on fire!!!

Rupika Chopra in a Crop Top by GADO GADO and Mom Fit Jeans

By the 70’s crop tops made a comeback with shorter hemlines. Cher made them quite popular in the music industry adorning them with glittery flared denims. Crop Tops became the sex symbol worn by the pop icons. During that time the crops became shorter and got bolder that were known as Bra Tops or Bralettes. The rage for crops began in the 1990’s and dropped around the 2000’s. But for now from the last year the trend has come back with much zing and colour. This look is especially suited for a vacation but one can easily wear these to a lunch, dinner or a get together without a second thought!

Rupika Chopra in a Knotted Shirt and shorts by ZARA

Remember the cropped top worn with High Waisted Drainpipes that looked glorious in the 80’s. Infact the cropped top worn with the leotards became a signature look for Madonna for a while. Even in the 90’s the rage for crop tops did not subside at all. Britney Spears, Spice Girls, Christina Aguilera flaunted their toned abs in the flashy Midriff tops. The best comeback of a trend is witnessed when the world follows it and for the last couple of seasons crop tops have been embraced all around the world again. Thanks to the social media for the fashion awareness and synchronising the world virtually. It has aligned our taste and of course, life is too short to miss out the best trends.

Rupika Chopra with a Crop Top by GADO GADO

I have paired my favourite crop top with my high waisted denim shorts. The style looks quite chic and one can change one’s vibe pairing it with pants, denims, skirts or shorts and footwear. Crop tops are all about no fuss dressing and one can accessorise according to the occasion and you are ready to roll. Not to miss out on, the Crop Top was recently popularised recently at the Red Carpet when the French Actress Marion Cotillard opted for a crop at the Cannes Film Festival showcasing Chanel Haute Couture and Ludovic De Saint Sernin Balmain Kimono. You see it’s all about baring the Solar Plexus and owning your power with much confidence and sex appeal. And when you are toning those ab muscles – you gotta flaunt them right …. and the Mid Riff Top accomplishes that fabulously!!

Rupika Chopra in a Crop Top and a Bandana and Mom Fit Jeans

Crop Tops with different cuts and styles change the look of an outfit. I am wearing divergent styles from the T – shirt style to an off shoulder to a bralette and they simply look astounding. Dolce and Gabbana recently showcased their high waisted skirts with bralettes in dazzling jungle prints, while BALMAIN electrified the fashion lovers with their street style from the 1990’s.

Rupika Chopra In a Zara Bustier

Due to the pandemic we have had limited access to stores but none the less Zara, H&M, etc. spoil us with amazing trends and colours. Zara recently launched a wonderful summer collection with vibrant hues. My black top is from Zara and the Off Shoulder top is from my favourite Dutch brand named GADO GADO. Her beautifully detailed clothes have a vintage touch and that simply makes me fall in love with her creations. I will be covering more of her collection this summer and you will be spellbound!!

Rupika Chopra in Off Shoulder Crop Top with high waisted Shorts

One can pair the crop tops with skirts, loose, straight or flared pants or denims with heels or sneakers and one will never fail to be pre- eminent. Crop tops are certainly intriguing and if you want to add some oomph this summer….. grab your tops in different styles – t – shirt, knotted, relaxed, bustiers and reignite your flair.

Till I write again soon….. I am sending you all much love and light from India and prayers for good health and safety🌟❤️and remember that WINTER ALWAYS TURNS TO SPRING!!!

CHAO!!!

Faux Leather turning the heat on this Winter!!!

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Conscious Fashion with The Fabulous Faux Leather this Winter!

Hello Fashion Lovers!!!

Hope you are blooming where you are, creating immense value with the fashion and life style choices you are making. Yes we are in the year of pandemic and it is absolutely important that we live in harmony with ourselves and the environment.

So have you turned vegan yet ? Well if you have not developed a vegan palate but have gone vegan as your alternative choice for fashion, that is simply remarkable!! Yes, I am talking about the very chic Vegan / Faux Leather that makes heads turn not just on the runways but leaves an astounding impression, whether you are at a bar, on the street, at a party or at a cafe or on a drink date. Veganism is making a breakthrough in the luxury fashion world. There is 40% increase in vegan fashion searches. Glad to see the awakened side of the world.

Very famously known as Faux Leather and Pleather, it is a throbbing choice of the famous and conscious fashion lovers again this season. The Vegan line has been popular for a couple of years now. Stella Mc Cartney was one of the early adopters of poly leather that looks luxuriously intriguing, as it even fits better than the genuine leather. The best part about Faux leather is that it doesn’t wrinkle, is less prone to scratches, it is waterproof and perfect for travels due to it’s light weight.

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Rupika Chopra in Black Faux Leather Skirt and Boots
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Beige Faux Leather Dress with Black Boots

I am an absolute animal lover and that turned me into a vegetarian 14 years ago. Compassion for animals has only gone deeper over the years and I want to continue making choices that do not add to the misery of any being. So having access to options like vegan leather / pleather makes me feel enormously happy.

If one strikes a comparison between leather and pleather, it is affordable for most whereas, the price for leather shoots up by a couple of dollars or thousands of dollars. Being light weight, sewing is less cumbersome and the cuts with this fabric make an outfit fit like one’s second skin. Given that it is a synthetic material, it can also be printed with different textures and patterns, that make it fun to work with for any designer.

Most of the faux leathers are made by layering plastic on fabric which ceased to be made. In the 70’s, manufacturers started experimenting with ployurethane as opposed to PVC and then they started using better techniques to make a long lasting fabric with better coating, resulting in textiles that feel more like the real stuff.

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Rupika Chopra in Faux Leather Beige dress & Boots

PETA celebrates Pleather as “Cruelty Free”. In the last decade the designers refrained from calling it vegan leather than Pleather, but in this decade it has been embraced as vegan leather gladly. Though there are many names given to it like – Leatherette, Man Made Leather, Synthetic leather etc. It advocates substantiality and buying cruelty free products ushers a feeling of being responsible towards our eco system.

Technology has come a long way so the manufacturing of great quality faux leather has changed one’s outlook of treating this fabric as inferior to leather. In the 1800’s Presstoff, a simulated leather material was made from the tree pulp and was developed in Germany. It was made in such a way that it would bind together in layers and look like leather. Prestoff was widely used in the World War II Germany on cases, belts, straps and covers. In 1914, Naugahyde, the first rubber based artificial leather was developed in Connecticut, in the United States. For a long time the fabric was used in making upholstery, house hold goods etc. Then followed the process of producing Fabrikoid in the year 1915 – a company named DuPont introduced a process of producing coated fabrics that lead to developing high quality of artificial leather. In 1920, Polyvinyl Chloride, famously known as PVC was produced by BF, Good Rich Company. It gained popularity in the 70’s and till even today it is used in array of commercial goods.

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Rupika Chopra in Faux Leather Pants
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Rupika Chopra is Faux Leather Pants

I am simply in love with the wide range of options available in Faux Leather in different brands. As you can see me in a beige well cut, perfectly lined dress – it not only looks chic and glam but also the texture feels soft on the inside . The shoulder pads dispenses body and an edge to this outfit. Boots never fail to add to the rock chic vibe. Anyone who can wear leather or pleather in style immediately soars high on the fashion meter.

My waist hugging mini skirt is very easy to slip on and feels great to hang in, as the material is soft. I remember wearing it on a rainy night to a party and I was saved from being drenched as the material is water proof. The Faux Leather pants look and feel like my second skin. The flexibility quotient is surely high as compared to leather. I have one rule for shopping, when you find something that fits like a dream…..just buy more colours in that. So I have many colors in the same style. In fact, recently Zara launched a pleather suit in the colour brown and that looked absolutely stunning and sexy. Stella McCartney has a prodigious collection in vegan leather.

LaBante London, is one of the brands to be proud of. Their handbags are made of vegetable leather ( a by product of vegetable waste). The Brand does not use PVC. LaBante has used apple leather – a mix of apple core and apple skin with a tinge of polyurethane – in their collection. I love the fact this brand has built a model of sustainable, luxurious, ethical brands.

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Rupika Chopra in Faux Leather Skirt & Boots
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Faux Leather Skirt and Boots
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Faux Leather Skirt and Boots

VOTCH is another successful vegan brand for watches and accessories with high quality faux leather straps.

OSIER is yet another brand that you will admire for its clothing line and accessories. This brand is from Europe and all their products are handmade. You can also look at brands like MELIE BIANCO, MATT & NAT, RJ GIBSON, SVALA, NANUSHKA, A.W.A.K.E. Mode etc.

Even though the pandemic prevails, so does our quest for fashion. Online shopping has boomed at this time and e-commerce has given another dimension to life now. There are gorgeous trench coats available at Zara in the hues of cherry, brown, beige, forest green and black. Faux Leather dresses, shorts, boots, pleated skirts, leggings, pencil skirts, Gilets, belts, blazers, pants . Recently the snake skin print on faux leather pants sold like hot cakes and are still in vogue. The textured pleather has become extremely fashionable and are perfect for dressing up this winter.

One undeniably looks dynamic, zestful and electric in Faux Leather. It oozes a hustler and a gangster vibe……and who’s debating that am any less of that – both on the Inside and Outside. 🙂

Gone are the days when leather proved to be a status symbol for many…..Faux Leather is here to rule, so grab your outfit and add some spunk to this pandemic, while you smell some coffee or relish a drink or two with your loved ones!!

Cheers!!!

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Rupika Chopra is Faux Leather Short Skirt and Boots

The Evergreen Slit Skirts!!!

The Evergreen Slit Skirts - Rupika Chopra

The Evergreen Slit Skirts - Rupika Chopra

A SLIT IN PLACE :

Summer is here and we are in a lockdown in the vicinity of our homes but nothing should stop us to enjoy the summer trends. Girls! this is the time to dive in your closet and get your favourite slit skirts and dresses out. They instantly remind me of the impeccably dressed air hostesses back in the day, walking with absolute grace in those well fitted skirts and stocking covered legs peeping through the slits. I remember as a child, I was so enamoured by their slick uniforms that I got a beautiful jacket and a skirt made for myself. The slit skirts gave every woman an opportunity to flaunt their curves.

The long A – line or body embracing pencil skirts are forever elegant, feminine and sultry.  From the time of my teens till the present moment, I have always thought a Slit on a dress or a skirt makes one look Hypnotic. Whether it is the Thigh High Slits or the conservative one’s, there is something alluring about them. Whether you are adorning a gown, a maxi dress or skirt a slit makes you truly walk like a sexy lady!

The Evergreen Slit Skirts - Rupika Chopra

The Evergreen Slit Skirt - Rupika Chopra

The first flash of legs was in the slit skirt Designed by Christian Dior in 1954 that took the world by a frenzy. Dior named this collection as the H – Line referring to Silhouettes he was creating with parallel lines. Slits have only grown popular since then. The pencil skirts became a rage with most of the Hollywood stars like Marylin Manroe, Audrey Hepburn, Elizabeth Taylor, Grace Kelly etc.  To me it represents sophistication and confidence in a woman.

By the end of 1960’s mini skirts took over and became the “Icon of the Cultural Revolution”. But Pencil skirts never really went out of fashion as they became a perfect attire to be worn to work with conservative slits. Whether it is a red carpet look or the casual do’s –  A slit simply has the power to add much sex appeal to any outfit.

The Evergreen Slit Skirts - Rupika Chopra

The Evergreen Slit Skirts - Rupika Chopra

Well going back to the history of a slit skirt, a slit was not added to give an extra cool glimpse of the leg but to add comfort for a woman to be able to stretch her legs while walking.

A slit on the sides of a skirt, back or in the front look absolutely flattering. It is obvious that in a work space one chooses pencil dresses or skirts sans the high slits. But when worn to parties or outside of the work space they make one sizzle in style.  Slits on a dress or skirts look extraordinary. I am obsessed with some for my fitted maxi dresses and my gorgeous A – line, satin long skirt that lets my femininity shine.

The New York Fashion Week displayed the most amazing creations for Spring 2020 by Marc Jacobs, Brandon Maxwell, Tommy Zendaya, Proenza Schouler, Prabal Gurung, Kate Spade, Carolina Herrera etc. Gigi Hadid, Hayley Ashton, Nikki Mcguire, Bella Hadid sizzled the ramp. 

The A- line skirt I am wearing in blue is quite an eye catching one with it’s colour combination and a slit on one side of the leg makes it distinctive. This combination with the a unique print top makes the outfit eclectic. It can be easily worn to a party, lunch or a dinner.

The Evergreen Slit Skirts - Rupika Chopra

The Evergreen Slit Skirts - Rupika Chopra

No matter what the print or the fabric is, a slit on a dress or a skirt surely makes one equivalent to saying, ” I dare to elegantly bare”.

The black skirt with a slit in the front is a classic piece. When paired with a white shirt, looks absolutely stunning and is perfect to be worn to a formal occasion. I love the clean cuts and one tone colours make an impact. Understated is always amazing. I am wearing mine with Boots and that makes my vibe fun and edgy. Accessories always perk an outfit. I love the check glasses I chose, they are very Italiano and spunky!

The Evergreen Slit Skirts - Rupika Chopra

The A- line pleated skirt I am wearing in blue is an eye catching one with it’s fun colour combination and a slit on one side adds a dash of oomph. This outfit can be easily worn to a party, lunch or a dinner. It is a vibrant attire adding to my cheerfulness. I have caramelised this look with my favourite tan brown shoes by Enzo DI Martino. The combination of the brown glasses, and earrings with a gold bracelet are perfect to seal the deal!!

So don’t let anything bring your spirits down and or hamper your style and use this time to become truly Invincible!!

Shine On!!

xoxo

The Evergreen Slit Skirt - Rupika Chopra

 

 

 

Fearlessly Camouflaged!!!

Camouflage

Inger Solberg 

It was a wonderful Wednesday afternoon, when the three of us got together for a shoot in Goa for the gorgeous and valorous camouflage collection designed by Inger Solberg and Liv Barfoed. I simply fell in love with the name of their brand ,“LIV-ING” as it signifies “Soul”. Liv and Inger have been friends for the last 32 years and their passion for creating a line together gave life to LIV – ING. Both Inger and Liv are gorgeous women who have gained expertise in their respective professions.

Camouflage collection by LIV-ING - RUPIKA CHOPRA

Rupika Chopra & LIV Barfoed

Inger is a celebrated designer from Denmark and she fell in love with designing clothes since she was 17 years old. She kept on practicing new creations and by then her heart knew that this was her calling. She went to a formal school of Design to train herself as a Designer. As destiny played it’s part, she came to India in 1989 and she felt a deep connection with the magical country. She moved to India permanently in the year 2000 –  she smiles and adorably says, ” Mera dil pakka Hindustani hai.” 

Camouflage Collection by LIV-ING - RUPIKA CHOPRA

Inger started her factory in New Delhi and she initiated designing for reputed private labels like H&M, BeYoung etc. LIV and Inger, proudly call their collection                      ” Madam Soldier” . Inger says, “she has always faced challenges like a fighter and friends compare her fighting spirit to that of Goddess Durga”. So this collection is a story of a woman who possess a heart of a warrior. 

I love the way Inger describes their collection as “Rough and Romantic” and shares that, “As a woman, one has to be rough to survive in this world and also be feminine to be in sync with herself and the real world.”  I love that thought!!

Liv Barfoed has been a former model and she was the first stylist in Denmark. She has been in the fashion Industry from the 80’s. She also educated herself as a designer and worked for many Danish companies one of them being “Royal Copenhagen”, where she designed a huge accessories collection. She has done many editorials and fashion shows for a lot of big Danish brands and Givenchy & Balmain in Paris. She has been involved in promoting reputed brands in Denmark. Liv has also worked as a PR and a Marketing professional and she continues to bring her expertise to their brand LIV-ING.

Camouflage Collection by LIV-ING - RUPIKA CHOPRA

The collection is made of high quality cotton produced in India. The printing is also done in the country itself. I love the romance added by the lace on this indomitable print, doing absolute justice to Inger’s depiction of “Rough and Romantic”. It simply makes it exotic!  The best part about camouflage print is that, when adorned, it doesn’t need to be blazoned, as it just declares the bold attitude of a personality.

Camouflage collection by LIV-ING

The collection represents a robust and a fearless vibe. I love the fact that women of any age can look spectacular in this collection. The dresses are breathable and light and can be beautifully accessorised with beads and funky earrings.  The style can make anyone stand out and that is the euphoria created by LIV-ING for their summer collection.

Camouflage collection by LIV-ING - RUPIKA CHOPRA

Well, I simply loved shooting for LIV-ING and ” THE MADAM SOLDIER ” collection has definitely stirred my emotions for now but wait till you see what LIV – ING has in store for you in their Fall collection. I cannot wait to grab my hands on it and I promise you, CAMOUFLAGE IS HERE TO STAY!!!

Photographer : Francois Matthys