'But will it look good on me?'
Soup collaborated with Aureole, a handloom brand that creates clothing to integrate and represent every kind of beauty.
It's a gorgeous dress, the fabric is sustainable, the photograph artistic and minimal. There's even a cactus somewhere in the background alluding to that particular kind of minimal contemporary aesthetic which everyone on Instagram has grown to love. Everything is quite perfect including the lithe, beautiful, unnaturally tall woman wearing the outfit ever so casually. Which makes you wonder if that dress would look just as good on you considering you have neither that body nor that cactus.
While most clothing is made for and presented on body types that vastly differ from that of the average Indian woman, brands like Aureole are striving to break away from the norm. Their beautiful handwoven fabrics in soft sustainable cottons are designed to enhance the beauty of every kind of body, because there isn't just one kind of beauty if it comes in so many shapes and sizes.
To demonstrate the versatility of their designs that take on the personality and individuality of the wearer, we asked five women of diverse body types to wear the same dress for our story. You'll find that while the dresses look different on each woman, they look great on everyone.
"I loved dressing up in boy's clothes as little girl. If someone mistook me for a boy, I didn't really mind," says 47 year old Yoshiko Inoue a clothes designer who recently moved to India from Japan.
"I used to be pretty unhappy being a skinny person. Nothing used to fit me well and every other person would give me some free unwanted advice on ways to gain weight, like that was the only important thing about me," says 24 year old Graphic Designer Roma Kashelkar.
"I loved how the dresses looked so different on all of us but still so cute. The fact that we all were natural and candid with each other - with no makeup or touch ups, is something I've not experienced before, on any shoot. The dresses made me feel free and stylish, two things I find important," says 18 year old Amelia, a student of psychology about dressing up in Aureole clothes.
"My mom used to stitch dresses for me when I was a kid. But then 'readymade' clothing took over and I think we lost the tradition of choosing what you like from fabric to design. But I've gone back to getting clothes made by my tailor since this last year. I love designing my own clothes.
While studying architecture I was lucky enough to visit parts of India where I got to know about various handloom projects and artisans. That’s why I am always curious about Indian handloom and the stories behind these artists who weave wonderful fabrics," says Radha Waykool a 25 year old Architect looking to change the world while preserving quaint handloom traditions.
"I loved the little details like the sleeves on the maroon dress - it felt like flowers were blooming at my wrist," says 31 year old filmmaker Anna Joseph about her favourite dress from the series.
Photographed by Indrajeet Rajkhowa
Editor/Creative Director Meera Ganapathi