By: Arya Aiyappan
Friday, February 16, 2007
There she walks elegantly on the ramp, poised and self-assured ready to conquer the world with her charms when all of a sudden at the blink of an eye, her skirt drops! Cameras flash, millions of eyes agog and life-long embarrassment tiptoes behind her. Wardrobe malfunctioning has become the buzz of the age. Every now and then a mishap occurs, newspapers flash it across as the top pick of the day. Wardrobe malfunctioning has caused much awkwardness to actresses and models striving hard to free themselves of the stigma. Tops and skirts ripping apart during stage shows or catwalks are quite frequent these days.
Instances are galore. Both actresses and models have fallen easy prey to the disgrace of enduring humiliation in public. Nigar Khan's top coming off on the catwalk in a fashion show in Norway, Big Boss fame Carol Gracias' top of the halter neck dress slipping down and former Miss India Gauhar Khan's skirt zip rending open while walking the ramp at Lakme Fashion Week in Mumbai, Payal Rohatgi, the sizzling Bollywood item girl whose zipper at the back of her blouse split open during a stage performance in Kolkata have created headlines. It is inevitably the presence of mind that is the saving grace. Payal modified her steps to make a decent exit and came back on stage with the zipper intact in place with safety pins, likewise Carol skillfully handled the situation with a composed grace. They are evidently caught at the spur of the moment and have to devise means to quickly make up for the mortification.
Apparently mixed opinions are raised. Some are preoccupied with the ethics and morals, Indian culture, values and traditions of yore. They vehemently protest against these wardrobe malfunctioning episodes, 'seemingly' manipulative and media-oriented with much planning that goes backstage. Shiv Sena right wing party leader, Pramod Navalkar commented to the media "In these fashion shows the majority of the body was exposed and very little was covered." That the wardrobe malfunctioning is indeed a cheap publicity gimmick is the predominant voice of the nation.
Reputed designers agree to differ on the issue with their claims to less number of models available to showcase an entire collection. Therefore they are left with only a fraction of a minute to go for a dress change. Time factor is crucial in showbiz where any delay is unpardonable. Justifications do pile up and the designers defend themselves with the precautionary measures they had taken to ensure that such uncomfortable situations are avoided and the dresses are securely fastened. They vouchsafe that accidents of such nature are hardly intentionally planned to gain media mileage. Whatever said and done whether the whole debacle of wardrobe malfunctioning is intentional or accidental is yet to be proved, but the lingering distaste of an unhappy exposure prevails forever.
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