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In Bin Roye, fashion and cinema live happily ever after

August 03, 2015

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Bin Roye is Mahira Khan’s movie and the styling says it all.
Bin Roye is Mahira Khan’s movie and the styling says it all.

There’s one thing that HUM Films’ Bin Roye certainly has to offer aside from a tale of crying, love, death and some more crying: fabulous fashion.

Taking some of the country’s most popular designer brands on board, Momina Duraid and Shahzad Kashmiri have endeavored to make sartorial statements through the silver screen. One can’t call the movie’s wardrobe cutting-edge – naturally, the clothes have been selected to suit the characters in the movie – but the womenswear is certainly on-trend, very pretty and well-tailored.

It is testament to how trends are changing in cinema and television. Back in the ‘70’s and ‘80’s, one remembers how Teejays brought baggy androgyny and color-blocking into vogue by dressing leading ladies in popular dramas like Ankahi and Tanhaiyaan.

Teejays provided wardrobe for nearly 150 dramas, a handful of which are Tanhaiyaan, Dhoop Kinare, Uncle Urfi and Ankahi
Teejays provided wardrobe for nearly 150 dramas, a handful of which are Tanhaiyaan, Dhoop Kinare, Uncle Urfi and Ankahi

Thereafter, cinema declined, the svelte heroine being replaced by a rotund, bling-infested siren. TV, meanwhile, veered towards the lackluster, with wardrobes relegated to the background.

In recent times, the power of popularizing trends through on-screen wardrobes was once again realized with Momina Duraid’s hit drama Humsafar. One remembers an all-black chiffon suit designed by Feeha Jamshed and worn by Mahira Khan that became an overnight sensation.

Let's admit it: we all ran to our tailors, asking them to replicate this very suit. - Photo courtesy: mobile9.com
Let's admit it: we all ran to our tailors, asking them to replicate this very suit. - Photo courtesy: mobile9.com

“On-screen wardrobes are important,” says Mahira Khan. “They help create an overall aura and with local productions being viewed all around the globe, they represent our aesthetics to the world.”

Bin Roye’s an interesting watch not just for the emotional drama aficionado but also for the discerning savant. Here’s what we loved … and some things that we didn’t:

1. Channeling the shalwar: Bin Roye brings old trends back

Mahira Khan’s garrulous Saba has the flair – and the waistline – to wear the shalwar just right; with fitted short shirts, short sleeves and flowy dupattas. Back and front necklines run deep and wide. It’s all very girl-next-door meets Yash Chopra heroine and while not everybody can look as good as Mahira in a clinging short kameez, Bin Roye has us itching to channel the shalwar right into our wardrobes.

Shalwar days were happier days, something Mahira Khan proves.
Shalwar days were happier days, something Mahira Khan proves.

Detailings vary from all-white kurtas and shalwars, to shirts with buttons running down the back, light embroideries, chikans, floral-printed shalwars with plain shirts, lacy cut-worked sleeves and the occasional navy blues and blacks for when someone dies or the leading lady has one of her all-too-prevalent blue moods.

The daily-wear has mostly been created by Labels and Elan according to requirements provided by HUM Films.

2. The formal touch: because we're incomplete without wedding wear

Heavily- embellished shirts worked with gota, kamdani and dabka, ghararas, shararas and chooridars… like any good desi romantic movie, Bin Roye is replete with weddings and the associated wedding-wear.

There’s Mahira in an all-yellow typical mayoon jora, Armeena in a heavily-worked peach shirt for her valima, Armeena’s powder-pink wedding dress with butterflies embroidered on the dupatta, Mahira on her wedding day in a wide-necked, sleeveless orange and red dress… the bridal regalia goes on and on, with most of the heavy formals created by Elan.

While Mahira wore heavy suits, her make-up was subtle
While Mahira wore heavy suits, her make-up was subtle

Feeha Jamshed designs a short choli and sharara for the Balle Balle song while Sania Maskatiya spins out fun, lighter designs: multi-colors for Chand raat, deep blue and pink worked with sequins, off-white for Eid embellished with floral embroideries and occasional off-the-rack quintessential digital prints on silk.

The embroidery was kept minimal and simple for the more casual looks
The embroidery was kept minimal and simple for the more casual looks

Mahira also wears a very pretty sari of her own, which proceeds to look ridiculous when she visits the beach in it. There are dupattas lined with gota, plenty of sequins and kaleidoscopia that may actually look quite bawdy in real-life but look good on-screen. There’s also plenty of heavy-duty jewelry, designed by Faisal Habib and Sherezad Rahimtoola.

These dupattas may look over the top in real life but they work well on camera
These dupattas may look over the top in real life but they work well on camera

So what’s new about all this? Nothing much but the movie makes wedding-wear and formals more interesting, allowing in the resiliently popular long and flowy but also making way for the refreshing shorter tunic.

3. Menswear glitches: the boys are mostly overlooked

Adeel Hussain waltzes in for a cameo appearance in the song Balle Balle, wearing Nomi Ansari: a digitally printed satin vest with a zardozi collar, embroideries and jeweled buttons. This is, possibly, the only time menswear actually makes a statement in Bin Roye.

Adeel Hussain manages to stand out in this interesting green ensemble
Adeel Hussain manages to stand out in this interesting green ensemble

Humayun Saeed’s wardrobe, a mix of designs by Bonanza, Deepak Perwani and Jazib Qamar, has some redeeming moments but overall, it varies from the insignificant to the badly fitted to the downright dowdy.

Why does he wear a blazer in sweltering Karachi while he talks to his grandmother? And the Western-wear makes him look positively overweight next to the svelte Mahira. He looks much better in basic kurtas and shalwars but there is a definite need for better tailoring.

Humayun Saeed's style lacks coherence throughout the movie
Humayun Saeed's style lacks coherence throughout the movie

Unfortunately, it seems that far too much attention has been placed into the womenswear, relegating the men’s wardrobe to the background. The Pakistani man is not a bawdy dresser and we like to see our heroes savvier, well-turned out and debonair — filmmakers need to keep that in mind.

4. Lessons in styling: less is more

Bin Roye is Mahira Khan’s movie and the styling says it all. Pale-skinned with bee-stung lips, Mahira looks beautiful, young and fresh. The rest of the cast suffers.

Armeena Rana Khan is certainly very pretty but multiple layers of foundation and eye make-up make her look like she is perpetually going to a wedding. Why does she have to have such perfectly blow-dried hair when she’s out jogging or when she’s going to study with friends? Perhaps Armeena was styled keeping in mind that she plays the older sister but a constant decked-up look just doesn’t make sense.

Armeena Khan plays the quintessential perfect older sister, who's always on point with her style and make-up
Armeena Khan plays the quintessential perfect older sister, who's always on point with her style and make-up

Humayun Saeed, while perfecting the romantic hero, looks exhausted.

It’s a glossy movie, with florals, fairy lights and furnishings easily creating a romantic ambience … if only as much attention had been paid to the styling of the entire cast!


Maliha Rehman is a fashion and lifestyle journalist with a penchant for writing, all the time! Log on to Twitter for more updates @maliharehman