5 Mar 2012

Carter Road

Cobra Beer/Guardian Mumbai City Guide Extra Shots - Part 2
Little Shilpa 's Hat Collection.

Manou of wearbout went around Mumbai, meeting very interesting people who keep experimenting with fashion. One of the people he meets is Little Shilpa, who lives in Bandra and is a milliner, not a very common profession in a country that has been discarding and ignoring head-dressing for a long time.

Many of you will remember her for creating a statement Lady Gaga wore on her head last year. Her home and head-laboratory (I'm calling it that) is colourful and is filled with a collection of interesting things, the neck and above and not just her creations. But before I take you on a tour of her collection and work-space, here's the short film of Manou doing a sartorial adventure on Mumbai streets.

Little Shilpa 's Hats.

She has an awesome collection of books on the art.

Shilpa's friends. The evening Manou and the film makers from London met her, she was heading out for a Sundowner party at a place in Juhu with friends. They were all dressed in her funky head-dress made for the occassion.

I'm a big fan of this guy: Prashant Miranda - Illustrator.

Have you ever wondered how strange we humans will appear to other animals? While we wonder about why snakes, giraffes, earthworms and peacocks look like what they are, they must be looking back at us and wondering how strange these strange stick-like mammals are. How do they move around without toppling over or falling? And the many expression on our faces.

For us humans, the face and head is the most important asset. Have you seen Imran Khan of Delhi Belly act? He is a good example to use for strange human facial expressions, especially using the eyebrows, (that evolved to stop the sweat from running into our eyes as we started walking upright) and the hairline that keep moving without any control.The rest of us are not so lucky and the hair on our heads survived to protect our heads from the sun. People look down on bald people even now because they had poor head protection long before head protection evolved.

But since those days, among humans, it was the head that we first noticed in men (Men notice something else is women first). It added to out height. We crowned our kings. We cut off the heads of the ones we didn't like. And in India, men still put a territorial marking on female heads to mark their territory. It should be there where it should be seen. Others just cover their hair. The list is endless but the fact is that we ensured that we paid great attention to out head. hair and what went on top of our most important asset - the brains.

After visiting, Little Shilpa, we realised that what we wear on our heads is important and that a whole lot of thought goes on inside Little Shilpa's head to cover up the lack of anythingsubstantial in many of our heads. With her creation, she even manages to make men notice heads and turn heads.


Dilshad said...

This must be the first time I am reading something about an actual milliner. I knew "they" existed, but now I know a lot more about Little Shilpa. Thanks MS!

Slogan Murugan aka M S Gopal said...

She's been in the news but no one calls her a Milliner...

You are welcome :)

Giribala said...

Very very interesting!!!! i am going to buy a gamcha at next opportunity!

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