Bhutanese exhibit apparel creations

Exhibiting their best apparel creations

SONAM PENJOR

Thimphu

The Embassy of India (EoI), and the Bhutan Fashion Consortium had launched an apparel design competition woven around the theme “The Buddhism Thread that ties India and Bhutan” for aspiring Bhutanese fashion designers aged 18-35 years on 29 October. 

This initiative conceived by the EoI is aimed to identify and promote all Bhutanese designers who possess the potential and innate entrepreneurial talent to grow and establish their own fashion houses.

Proprietor of Bhutan Fashion Consortium (BFC), Kencho Wangmo said that interweaving the thread seemed daunting and claustrophobic. On the contrary, the unprecedented number of participation and glamorous wear, bolstered teams’ hope and dedication for the cause. “Buddhism has shaped and steered lifestyle, culture and nation building beyond anyone’s imagination. The colorful incorporation of patterns and choice of fabric have been associated with Buddhism.”

“We have witnessed today promising designer and beautiful couture. Without such platform, living with aspiration would also be difficult. I would like to extend my appreciation to the Ambassador, for instilling hope and believe in the future designers,” added Kencho Wangmo.

The winner of the design competition, Sonam Choden said “My inspiration comes from the simplicity of Buddha’s life. Moments of peace and stillness give us how extraordinary our lives could be so to put that concept in my design I went for minimalistic design that represents not only about Buddhism but also the spiritual path that has always connected India and Bhutan.” 

“I want to relay the message that Buddhism has brought peace between both the countries yet this sense of meaning and wonder is easy to lose sight of in the hectic pace of modern life,” she added.

Similarly, the runner-up for the design competition, Tenzin Lhazom said that Buddhism is a philosophy that emphasizes on the need to live simply and respect the cycle and balance in nature.

“We believe that once we are born in this world, we serve stewards to mother earth. Even on Lord Buddha’s journey of enlightenment, nature played an ever-present role and even today, the environment is said to reflect the nature of Buddha.

Deriving her inspiration from this line of thought, she has incorporated the significance and beauty of the lotus flower and portray simplicity and detachment from materialism. Hence, her design shares a contrast look of intricate and luxury coated with simplicity.

“The message I want to focus is on the beauty and power of mother nature. Buddhism is a trans-boundary philosophy which entails that no matter which country one is from, we become naturally steward to mother earth and therefore we must help achieve the ultimate goal of peace,” added the Tenzin.

The BFC was founded by Kencho Wangmo. Owner of Kencho House of Designe also known as Kencho Kouture along with other leading designers in the country to empower Bhutanese fashion industry to take a leading role locally and globally economy and capture one -of -kind market in creative professions to lead the fashion industry through creative influence and collaborations.

Thus is to expand the collective talents of the fashion industry to enable sustainable growth and strengthen Bhutanese textile and fashion in the global market.

Kencho Wangmo said that they aim to provide a platform for the existing designers alongside upcoming in creative projects by supporting, promoting and bringing together, creativity and innovation through sustainable practice.

The event, “Bharat to Bhutan” on the theme “the Buddhism thread that ties India and Bhutan” was initiated with support from EoI in collaboration with BFC to celebrate ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsay’, 75 years of glorious history of its people, culture and achievements.

The attractive first prize was an all-expenses paid five-day internship with the Fashion Design Council of India (FDCI) that will be fully sponsored by the EoI. 

The press release from the EoI states that this will be an opportunity for the Bhutanese designer to imbibe the latest design and couture trends prevalent in the Indian and international fashion arena and also learn design and techniques directly from the top designers at FDCI. 

Ahead of the final round of the apparel design competition, Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj said, “The India@75 Amrit Mahotsav Apparel Design Competition and Exhibition is a Government of India initiative to nurture the best creative talent of young and aspiring Bhutanese designers. The competition is another opportunity to celebrate the spirit of Buddhism that enjoins the people of our two countries.”

Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj said that the purposes of the event was to support Bhutanese entrepreneurship.

For the winners of the designers, cash prizes were awarded to designers who submitted the next best apparel entries.

The first runners up received a cash prizes of Nu 25,000, second runners up received a cash prize of Nu 20,000 and a consolation prize of Nu 15,000.

Meanwhile, the website of the BFC was also launched by the Ambassador of India to Bhutan.