Vidya Balan launches Arshia Ladak’s book ‘A Wardrobe Full of Stories’

Renowned Indian Film actor Vidya Balan launched late Arshia Ladak’s book posthumously honouring her documentation of untold stories of sarees at a cultural event on 6th May, 2023 at the Town Hall of Mumbai. Inner Courtyard presented A Wardrobe Full Of Stories by Arshia Ladak along with Suta - The Thread By Art Vision and Padmashree Ileana Citaristi and Mapped! - A collection of Asiatic Society's restored maps at the event.

Known for her fondness of sarees, Vidya Balan has emerged as the ambassador of handlooms and local artisans of the heartlands from the country. Making sarees her style statement, Vidya Balan has time and again vouched for the upliftment of weavers from the nooks and corners of the nation, making her the ideal representative of the traditional wear to launch the book.

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A Wardrobe Full of Stories is a compendium of cherished, never-told-before saree-stories. The text is built upon 34 interviews that Arshia Ladak conducted with public luminaries such as Vidya Balan, Swati Piramal, Shobhaa Dé, Cherie Blair as well as saree designers and revivalists like Pavithra Muddaya of Vimor.

The book germinated during the author’s battle against cancer and to share with the world her priceless collection of vintage and heritage sarees. In the gathering and retelling of the stories from journalists, dancers, actors, philanthropists, lawyers, doctors, singers, designers, revivalists, artists, corporate mavens and entrepreneurs—women from diverse walks of life, all saree lovers—the author weaves together the historic, mythic and cultural legacy of India’s most enduring icon, the saree. Richly designed with original art and stunning iconography, the book is a collector’s item and hopefully will culminate into India's first Museum of Sarees.

Vidya Balan shares, “I am greatly honoured to unveil the precious collection of Arshia Ladak in the form of her book A  Wardrobe Full Of Stories. I have always been an admirer of sarees and especially in awe of the handloom weavers and local artisans so when Arshia approached me for my thoughts on sarees I instantly was on board. I feel, launching this book and presenting to the world the brilliant work of Arshia Ladak is my tribute to her passion, hard work and memories.”