Nithya Ramani in Mumbai
Making Deepika Padukone sexy in front of the camera may not seem like a big challenge, seeing how beautiful the model-turned-actress is. But some of the credit does go to ace fashion designers, who style their beautiful outfits.
Designer Niharika Khan designed Deepika's outfits in Karthik Calling Karthik. She also designed her co-star Farhan Akhtar's outfits, giving him two looks in the film -- a stylish one, and a nerdy look.
Khan, who is designer Arjun Basin's sister, has worked with Farhan in films like Dil Chahta Hai and Rock On!! earlier.
She talks to Nithya Ramani about styling for Deepika and Farhan.
Tell us about the outfits you designed for Deepika and Farhan in KCK.
Deepika plays a Bengali girl, who is stylish, fun, sassy, sexy, vivacious and confident. I have given her western outfits like shorts and t-shirts for casual wear and formal shirts and skirts for office wear. I've given her colours like white, beige, red, blue and brown.
Her outfits are smart and sexy, and yet subtle. She is an independent Mumbai girl, whi is upmarket -- she earns well so she can dress up well.
'Farhan's character is always overshadowed by Deepika's'
Farhan has two looks in the film.
Director Vijay (Lalwani) was very clear as to how he wanted the two looks to be like. Farhan One has a very understated look. He wears boring outfits. I gave him light colours like greys, browns, creams and beiges.
Farhan Two is stylish and cool. I gave him bright colours like blue and grey. He wears dark, stylish suits.
His character is always overshadowed by Deepika's, so she's the one who is more vibrant and colourful.
I shopped all over Mumbai for their clothes.
'Deepika looks good in almost anything'
How was it working with Deepika?
Deepika is very polite. She is a thorough professional.
We had a lot of fitting sessions. I think Deepika looks good in almost anything. We used to discuss her look a lot. She would share her inputs, which I thought were valuable. If I wanted to make her look like a hippy, she would say that Shonali is not a hippy. It is very important to make your actor feel comfortable in what she or he is wearing.
I gave her a lot of options. We did a lot of trials and fittings. I wanted her to look very stylish. But Vijay insisted that she shouldn't be very stylish but instead, look believable. That was the only difference in opinion we had.
But I was okay with it. Ultimately, it's the director's call. I am here to do my job and make my actor feel comfortable in what he or she is wearing. Outfits should be the least of an actor's concern.
'Farhan wanted people to see his non-stylish side'
What about Farhan?
Since I have worked with him in Dil Chahta Hai and Rock On!!, I knew his likes and dislikes. The general perception that people have about Farhan is that he is stylish. But Farhan wanted people to see his non-stylish side. It was easy to design for him.
What are your favourite outfits in the film?
I love Deepika's white shirt and beige skirt. She looks very pretty and professional. I have given her cotton and linen fabrics. I also like the blue stripe shirt with sleeves. It has only three buttons. It looks very sexy on her.
I like her beige shorts and blue t-shirt as well that she wore while painting the walls of her house with Farhan.
Since Farhan One is very simple, I liked his formal shirt and pleated pants. It is very basic and nerdy -- a shy kind of outfit. I have given him a lot of cottons and synthetics.
Farhan Two wears a leather jacket, which looks very cool on him.
'Deepika didn't want to cut her hair short'
How did you decide on Deepika's hairstyle?
That was quite a hassle. She didn't want to cut her hair short and Vijay insisted that she have short hair. But since Adhuna (Farhan's wife, and hairstylist) was present, we didn't have a problem. All of us compromised on how we wanted her hair length to be, and finally decided on the final length.
What kind of accessories have you given them?
They have minimal accessories. Since Deepika is an ambassador of Tag Heur watches, she wears them. So does Farhan. They wear sunglasses too.
I have given Deepika silver jewellery that I made myself. Also, a pearl bracelet and pearl earrings.
Since Deepika is very tall, I didn't give her high heels. I have her flat chappals and sandals. Farhan wears formal as well as casual shoes.