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Subtle Does It Image Credit: THE WEEK
Subtle Does It Image Credit: THE WEEK

Subtle Does It

Luxury living in India is undergoing a transformation—no more outlandish displays, just understated elegance

Neha S. Bajpai

The lore of the ‘Little Black Dress’ dates back to 1926 when Gabrielle ‘Coco’ Chanel redefined elegance with a short, simple, nofrills number in black. Shorn of any ornamentation, the dress reinstated black as the colour of sophistication and not of mourning.

In the post-World War Parisian society, Chanel’s creation ushered in a chic simplicity. It offered a liberation of sorts for fashionable ladies fretting over the trailing flounces of silk skirts and stiff satin gowns. The most defining moment for the ‘LBD’ came when Audrey Hepburn patronised the style in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. From Jacqueline Kennedy to Princess Diana to Jennifer Aniston, a little black dress has been a wardrobe staple for women from all walks of life for over nine decades now.

Chanel would have approved of today’s trends. Far from the fussy, overblown bling of the 1990s, luxury living today is all about sophisticated simplicity. The lust for labels is gradually giving way to the love for local. Ethical, culturally rich experiences in food, travel and hospitality are defining the new norms for luxury across the globe. “Instead of prizing logos, consumers are moving towards products which are unique and personalised, like Burberry's ‘The Rucksack’ that includes your initials on the bag or British jewellery brand Loquet's lockets that can be filled with tiny gems and personal items,” says Diana Verde Nieto, founder of Positive Luxury, a London-based company that is helping brands like Dior, Fendi and Dom Pérignon to have a positive impact on society and environment. “Nowadays people w


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