Indian Fashion Police

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Archive for the ‘Interviews’ Category

Nikasha Tawadey – Creating a colourful Fantasy

Posted by Indian Fashion Police on January 17, 2013


Nikasha Tawadey

‘Indian Fashion Police’ interviews designer Nikasha Tawadey about her work, the celebrities she has dressed up as well as her latest collection. Nikasha has showcased her collection at numerous fashion weeks in India for years now and has recently opened her flagship store in New Delhi. IFP has been following on Nikasha’s work since this website was started and feel delighted to know more about her ideas and work.

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Celebrities like Chitrangada Singh, Sameera Reddy, Asin, Neha Dhupia, Bipasha Basu, Parineeti Chopra, Prachi Desai to name few, have worn Nikasha’s creations at events. What caught my eye were the beautiful blend of colours that one gets to see in Nikasha’s work………where other designers were opting for pastels, Nikasha’s collection with vibrant hues were like fresh breeze.

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Nikasha at Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week

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‘Indian Fashion Police’ got a chance to know Nikasha better as a designer. IFP also gives you a look at her recent Spring/Summer 2013  collection ‘Chandni Chowk’ as well as her Bridal Wear Collection 2013.

1)    How did you start off in fashion designing?

Nikasha : It was while I was completing my education in psychology that I happened to realize my real calling in fashion design and decided to dabble into this industry. Since then there has been no looking back and today am happy to have achieved success in something I always loved.

2)    What defines ‘Nikasha Tawadey’s designs?

Nikasha : My design ethos is a strong reflection of the journey of a modern Indian woman, who embraces tradition with a contemporary outlook. Through interplay of vibrant colours, delicate embroidery, fabrics and prints, we have created a unique portfolio of both resort wear and bridal collections, which portray a global style, accentuating Indian traditional craftsmanship with a modern twist. ‘Less is more’ has been our brand philosophy, we always shy away from going over the top or using heavy embellishments.

3)    In your eyes, how do you think a woman ought to dress in Indian wear?

Nikasha : For me elegance is really important to do justice to any Indian wear and that comes with comfort. As already said, ‘less is more’ has been our brand philosophy which will always keep you comfortable in what you are wearing. Alongside bright colors, different textures can make all the difference in any outfit without the need for going over the top with heavy work.

4)    Many celebrities have worn outfits designed by you, is there anyone in particular that you would love to design for?

Nikasha : I have had the opportunity to work with ladies like Kareena Kapoor, Sonam Kapoor, Deepika Padukone, Diana Penty, Priyanka Chopra, Asin, Bipasha Basu, Katrina Kaif and Sonakshi Sinha and have loved to dress them all so it would be difficult for me to choose any one.

5)    Your Spring/Summer 2012 collection had loads of floral designs & bright colors. What surprise is in store for us from your next collection?

Nikasha : My spring summer collection 2013 is inspired by the lanes of Chandni Chowk. Like the joyful hustle and bustle of the city’s iconic bazaar, this collection is full of lively spirit with colours like mithai pink, Ferozi (turquoise) and santri (orange), fused with eclectic prints. As compared to last year’s collection this time I have played with different fabrics and textures. The fluid silhouettes are layered with glittering tinsel decorations, trimmings, and detailing that bring to the collection a playful and vibrant spirit.

6)    Best compliments received for your designs?

Nikasha : Recently from Raghuvendra Rathore, A designer whom I deeply respect and look upto said looking at my collection “ These really should be from the house of Rathore”.

7)    What would be your advice to a budding designer?

Nikasha : According to me it is very important to love your work and be a 100% commited, each day, each minute, each second!!

8)    Nikasha Tawadey’s personal style would be……..

Nikasha : For me it’s always been about comfort, so that pretty much drives all my choices.

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Jatin Varma – ‘Demure’ combined with ‘Sophistication’

Posted by Indian Fashion Police on September 29, 2012

Ileana D’Cruz in a Jatin Varma outfit

There are many things that I would avoid wearing when it comes to western designs like loads of embellishments, animal print, laser cut designs,shiny sequins, voluminous skirt etc…………..but there are only a handful of designers in India who make these look like a dream on the runway.  A creation which makes your imagination run wild is what I describe as fashion. Such was the case when I viewed Jatin Varma’s work for the very first time during fashion week. But then came a thought in my mind…………will this designer ever reply to my request at interviewing him???

Amazingly Jatin did reply and gave me the answers to all of my fashion questions……….despite his busy schedule, the man did take out sometime for ‘Indian Fashion Police’ ……….all I can say is that I was blessed by the ‘Dark Angel’ ……. pun intended since this is the name of his recent collection as well;-)

Starting his very own label in 2001, Jatin Varma showcased his very first collection at Wills Lifestyle Fashion Week in 2006…….since then the outfits that he has created have been up for grabs by celebrities and their stylists. To future add to his laurels, He has also showcased his designs in London Fashion Week in 2009. His signature line is currently showcased in many stores like Debenhams, Lifestyle, Shopper’s Stop across India. His creations are also available in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UAE, Germany, Norway, USA, Singapore, Kuwait, Egypt, United Kingdom. He was also nominated this year by International Apparel Federation for the International Designer Awards 2012.

Jatin Varma Designs on Magazine Covers

Jatin Varma creations are popular on the magazine covers as well as on the red carpet. ‘Indian Fashion Police’ gets behind the designer and his thoughts on fashion in our ‘Interview with the Designer’.

1. You started your career in 1997 and today have built a well-known label in the past 15 years. IFP would love to know about your journey till now?

Designing is something I have always wanted to pursue. In those days there was no clarity on the profession, what it entailed or what was expected of you. We are the second lot of experienced designers and I am sure our journey is very different from the founders and veterans of the industry today! My journey has been fascinating, and I have no regrets but I must say it has taken me a lot of hard work to get to where I am today.

2.   What inspired you to become a designer?

What inspires me to be a designer is the female form and how as a silhouette is there are so many different ways to achieve different looks. The grace and elegance that a woman withholds is what galvanizes me to form ideas. My collection vary greatly from season to season, from gothic to feminine, to edgy to bold!

3. Your recent collections ‘Glisten – Shine by Reflection’ & ‘Dark Angels’ are poles apart. Glisten has  structured silhouettes and laser cutwork …. A very futuristic collection while Dark Angels is very ‘Gothic’ inspired. How would you define it in your own words?

‘Glisten-Shine by Reflection’ is a collection, which brings out the exquisiteness of silhouettes and at the same time the cutwork gives the designs a tad bit of an edge. I have used very light colours, which helps in maintaining a balance. It started with a small swatch I saw, along with the idea of expanding my design aesthetics by doing something that was both feminine as well as futuristic! I chose to create an entire collection from fabrics that one would ideally never pick as first choice! Both the laser cutting technique along with the felt was concept that could have gone either way, having said that I feel the only way to evolve as designer is to continuously experiment , evolve and take risks!

‘Dark Angel’ is very ‘Gothic’ but with a modern twist where the colour palettes is kept in darker colours with touches of glitter and embellishments. ‘Boldness’ is the key element which has been featured through exaggerated shoulders, sheer fabrics and figure hugging silhouettes. In short this edgy line is for the strong, confident ‘diva’ who makes a statement with the bold Gothic undertones blended with uber sexy, feminine forms

4.You have worked for big fashion houses in India & abroad, any designer whose work you admire the most?

Working with fashion houses has stimulated my career in abundance and hence to just pick one of them would be very extremely difficult, as they have all taught me so much! I have learnt about the importance of the commercials viability of a collection, just being a hit on the ramp is not important, people may be in awe of your clothes but it fails to connect if the garments are not wearable. Another learning experience was to work on large volumes, but at the same time maintain the label aesthetics – the cuts, the fit, the finishing as well as the design aesthetics that come with it.

5.  Western-wear – from outfits to jewelry has been your ‘forte’, but will we ever get to see JV’s Indian inspired looks in the near future?

I have already worked on some Indian inspired attire. Hopefully, I will be able to showcase in the near future. Currently I do Indian wear on an order only basis, like I mentioned before I design aesthetics are highly focused around getting the right fit and silhouette. Having said that I work on collaborative labels in the Middle east and have found a way to combine gorgeous ethnic embroideries with a westernized floor length abaya or kaftan.

6. Your designs have graced the celebs on leading magazine covers and red carpet events. Anyone particular celeb you would love to design for?

I have had a very exciting experience dressing up celebs. I won’t lie; it’s a pleasure to see my designs on cover pages of magazines.

7.  ‘JV Couture’ is for the woman who is…….

JV couture is for a woman who is strong, independent and likes to make a statement wherever she goes and such women have always influenced my work.

8. Suggestion for upcoming designers………

A suggestion to upcoming designers would be to work with what inspires them as it always works wonders. And as Coco Chanel said, “In order to be irreplaceable, one must always be different.” This has been the cutting edge of my work and I’m sure it will achieve volumes!

Photo Courtesy : http://www.jatinvarma.com

Jatin Varma designs on the red carpet

Genelia D’souza

Parineeti Chopra

Brittany Snow

Sonal Chauhan

Queenie Singh

Ankita Shorey

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ISHARYA by Radhika & Gauri Tandon

Posted by Indian Fashion Police on April 18, 2012

Q:        What is the latest trend among Hollywood celebs like Cameron Diaz, Drew Barrymore, Eva Longoria, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jennifer Lopez, Katy Perry, Kim Kardashian & Paris Hilton?

 A:        All these glamorous women have been spotted wearing ‘ISHARYA’ jewelry at red carpet events, television interviews or on magazine covers. Visit their official website and one gets to see all the Hollywood hotties adorned with ‘Isharya’ creations.



 Even more wonderful is the fact that the label ‘Isharya’ is brainchild of two women entrepreneurs of Indian origin. If it is Indian and making waves on the international fashion scene, ‘Indian Fashion Police’ has to be the first one to catch the buzz. So let me introduce you to the happening designer duo of ‘Isharya’ – Radhika & Gauri Tandon.

Sisters-in-law and co-founders, Radhika and Gauri Tandon were headed down very different paths prior to the launch of Isharya. Radhika was a practicing intellectual property lawyer in the San Francisco Bay Area; Gauri, a graduate from the London School of Economics, had relocated from Los Angeles to Mumbai. Both had a passion for jewelry and created their own designs for family and friends “on the side”. After noticing a void in Indian-inspired, luxury, statement jewelry in the market, Radhika and Gauri created the concept Isharya in December 2004. The name “Isharya” was inspired by Radhika and Gauri’s strong family ties and is a combination of their children’s names: Ishaan, Armaan and Arya.

 

What started as a hobby quickly grew into a successful business catching the eye of celebrities, retailers and editors. In 2007, Radhika and Gauri focused full-time on growing the brand, creating offices in Mumbai and California with sales representatives worldwide.

 Their collection has been worn by numerous Hollywood celebs and has appeared in countless magazines – Harper’s Bazaar, People, In Style, Allure, Cosmopolitan, Verve, Hello! India, Marie Claire etc. to name a few.

 IFP got a lucky chance to find out more in our short Q & A session about the designer-duo who have created a rage with their creation around the globe. 


Q & A with Creators of ‘Isharya’ – Radhika & Gauri Tandon


1)      From America to the rest of the world… How has this journey been so far in terms of establishing your brand name?

The brand was launched in late 2004. For the first three years, we treated jewelry making as a hobby and worked on it part-time. With the help of artisans in Mumbai, we created two or three collections each season and sold pieces to boutiques in the United States. When this started gaining the attention of more reputable retailers, celebrities and the press, we started to work on Isharya full-time in 2007 and there has been no turning back. We were really just having fun designing jewelry for friends and ourselves when we were noticed by the editor of Daily Candy, an online US magazine, who wrote about our pieces. Before we knew it, Isharya was born. Today, Isharya is sold in over 600 stores worldwide – ranging  from small, eclectic fashion boutiques to iconic retailers like Neiman Marcus and Henri Bendel, and online on net-a-porter.com. The fact that it is global is definitely an achievement.

2)      ‘Isharya’ is now available in India also. How has the response been here since its launch?

Isharya jewelry has always been available online through our website, through sites like net-a-porter.com and by private appointment. Over the past year, we have developed a growing network of outlets from which Isharya retails at stores like Ensemble and Bombay Electric. We are in ten stores at 16 locations in eight cities in India. With the price of gold rising, we offer affordable options for the trend-conscious consumers of fine jewelry in India.

 

3)      ‘Isharya’ has been worn by some of the most glamorous women in Hollywood. Is there any celebrity in particular who you wish would wear ‘Isharya’ jewelry?

Isharya’s statement pieces have been spotted on numerous celebrities, including Gwyneth Paltrow, Cameron Diaz, Jessica Alba, Drew Barrymore, Hillary Duff, Sofia Vergara, Eva Longoria, Emily Blunt, Selena Gomez, Jessica Simpson and Khloe Kardashian. The jewelry has been seen on hit TV shows such as Gossip Girls, Modern Family and Entourage. We would love to collaborate with Jennifer Lopez and Beyonce to make a collection of dramatic chandelier earrings and cocktail rings.

 

4)      We have seen ‘Isharya’ collections with Minakari work, semi-precious stones, wood, pearls and colored glass. What surprise do you have in store for fashionistas in your next collection?

We are always thinking ahead and creating new designs every 60 days to keep up with the ever-changing market. However, we do so while still using high-quality materials and designs that tie back to our signature pieces. A majority of our pieces include 18k gold plating. Each season has at least two new groupings based on a brand new technique that was not part of past Isharya collections. The inspirations for new collections come from traveling and researching historical and global jewelry techniques, and Isharya strives to make such techniques trendy by using modern materials and aesthetics. The Maharani Jaisel collection and the vibrant pinks of our Spring Summer 2012 Nile Nymph Collection encapsulate historic cultural techniques from Egypt and India and translate them into contemporary summer must-haves.

5)      What style trend in jewelry would you predict for the upcoming season in India?

One big trend that we see time and again is the “updated vintage” style. In the past few seasons, we have been noticing a lot of ’60s- and ’70s-inspired fashion. People love the sense of history, but want an updated version of it to work with today’s time. Isharya’s pieces are a blend of traditional Indian/Bollywood style and 20th century Art Nouveau style. We aim to make wearable statement pieces that effortlessly fuse California chic with Bollywood glamour.

 

6)      We know so much about the brand ‘Isharya’ but what is your personal style statement?

Gauri: I prefer jumpsuits with Isharya stackable polki bangles.

Radhika: My favorite style is pairing a maxi summer dress with an Isharya long filigree icon necklace.

Isharya Jewelry is available online via their official website www.isharya.com and also on other websites which sell ‘Isharya’ like , harrods, Net-a-porter.com & Endless.com  ‘Isharya’ is exclusively available at ‘Bungalow 8’ in Colaba, Mumbai. So all you hot women out there, get up and grab a piece of glamour from ‘Isharya’.

A glimpse at few beautiful pieces from ‘Isharya’


Photo courtesy : http://www.Isharya.com

Interview courtesy : Maya Bhogilal of EtcEtre


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‘Malaga’ by Malini Agarwalla

Posted by Indian Fashion Police on October 4, 2011

By Malini Agarwalla

Whenever I get an affirmative answer for an interview from a leading designer, it feels as if I have entered the gates of fashion heaven. I think about the questions I would ask the designer, I want to know about their start, their struggles and their success. Celebrities are given a ‘style identity’ by the designer who work day and night to create the future of fashion.

Times when I want to see these beautiful creations, I always try to visit the boutiques, the fashion malls and the designer stores on my visit back to India. I do have my ‘Alice in Wonderland’ moment every single time I visit a fantastic store. The last time I was lost in the dream was when I visited a store name ‘Malaga’ in Palladium Mall, Lower Parel. Every single object had the Indian touch which is rare to find in these times where the world draws inspiration from the west only. The bags, the shoes, the jewelry, belts………..I must confess I could not take my eyes off the collection.

‘Malaga’ the label started by Malini Agarwalla in the year 2004 has risen to become one of the leading designer brands in India. Malini has showcased her collection not just in Indian fashion weeks but also in Paris, Milan, London, Dubai and many more destinations.

She has blended the modern with the traditional to create beauty. I am still in awe of her collections which she had presented at Fashion Week. The entire collection has loads of zardosi work, Swaroski & semi-precious stone encrusted designs on fabrics like silk, brocade, velvet……a reflection of Royalty indeed.

Celebrities like Sonakshi Sinha, Amrita Arora, Simone Singh, Sushmita Sen, Sophie Chaudhary have been seen wearing ‘Malaga’ creations. She also one of the participating designers in ‘Araaish’ – event with a social cause. She has rocked at Lakme Fashion Week with the bags, jewelry and shoes, each time surprising the audience with her latest collections. Here is a look of ‘Malaga’ creations on the runway.

Malini has successfully opened stores in Mumbai and Delhi within few years of the launch of  ‘Malaga’……. truly commendable for a new brand to establish itself so amazingly. I am thankful to Malini who took some time out in order to answer few questions that I always wanted to ask and know about her.

Q & A with Designer Malini Agarwalla, Creator of ‘Malaga’

Sushmita Sen posing with Malini Agarwalla and one of her ‘Malaga’ creations

1) How did you start off with creating designer bags, shoes and accessories when the trend was yet to catch up in India?

Malini : I have done my MBA with finance and had no formal training in design. I was helping my husband in his business when I decided that I want to do something by myself that is more creative. Since I am passionate about Handbags and footwear I decided to give
this a shot. This was 10 years ago and so far I have enjoyed this journey immensely.

2) What was your inspiration behind the label ‘Malaga’?

Malini : Inspiration behind the label is definitely our Heritage. My attempt is to use our heritage to design a product which is contemporary and classic. The intention is to present the best of India in a handbag with the best possible finish to the rest of the word. A tall order but I am working towards it.

3) ‘Malaga’ already has stores in Mumbai & Delhi, you have showcased your designs at Lakme Fashion Week……..what’s next for the label?

Malini : Having established the brand Malaga our next step is the launch of two diverse labels

a) Malaga Bespoke– which will be launched in October this year where we are launching handbags made with precious metals and stones and accompanying real jewellery.

b) Pimento – by Malaga which is a prêt line of handbags , footwear and jewellery .

4) What would you predict as style trend in the year 2012 in bags, shoes & accessories?

Malini : I think colour is going to be big next summer as well and the shapes will be more structured . Detailing and structure is what I think will make the ‘IT’ accessory.

5) Your designs have been worn by many well known faces, is there anyone in particular that you would want to see carrying a ‘Malaga’ creation??

Malini : Sonam Kapoor

6) We know so much about the brand ‘Malaga’, but we would like to know about the Designer’s personal style?

Malini : As I guess would be obvious I am a totally accessory person. I like going simple in clothes. Clean lines and well finished ,which could look different each time I accessorize them. I believe that just one statement piece is enough –a bag or a piece of jewellery. Also comfort and style must go together. I could never wear something that I am not comfortable in. Whether the fit or the style.

To find out more about ‘Malaga’, you can visit the store at Gulmohar Road, JVPD & Juhu Palladium Mall, Lower Parel in Mumbai. While ‘Malaga’ is located on 13 M.G.Road, New Delhi.

For more details you can visit her official website at http://demo.worldofmalaga.com/default.aspx or stay updated about her collection via ‘Malaga’ Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/MalagaBags?sk=wall.

Photo courtesy : ‘Malaga’ by Malini Agarwalla.

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Manav Gangwani – ‘The Timeless Couturier’

Posted by Indian Fashion Police on August 30, 2011

A wise person once said “If fashion is wearable, then it is not fashion anymore”. Only few designers have been able to pull of this statement with success since there is a thin line between ‘Haute Couture’ and ‘Passe’. Every fashion week, I await so many designers to come up with something truly exceptional, sadly I end up being disappointed most of the times. But off late I do enjoy seeing a whole lot drama in Manav Gangwani’s collection when they are showcased on the runway. His designs often surprise me to some extent shock me, but the rarity of his designs is what I find very unique and am left wanting for more. His creations are definitely larger than life but that is what makes him stand out of the rest. Today he is one of the top-notch designer of our country……it is a fashion writer’s dream come true to write about Manav Gangwani. There might have been many interviews with Manav Gangwani before mine, but I promise to explore every facet of this designer’s world in my article.

Manav Gangwani is one of the most creative, innovative and promising designers in India, at a young age has carved a niche for himself in the world of fashion with his compellingly bold style statements. No one that I have seen, has ever made a modern age version of a lehenga so alluring on and off the runway like Manav.

While still in college, Manav recognized his strong inclination towards fashion designing. An Alumnus of Pearl Academy of Fashion, ………Manav began his career with ‘Carma’ in New Delhi in the year 1999. From then on there has been no looking back for Manav…… The Manav Gangwani label has become synonymous with luxury and style………….someone who has been able to single handedly create a ‘Brand’ out of sheer hardwork & knowledge.

He has designed the wedding trousseau of Lara Dutta and Raveena Tandon to name few…….Celebs like Karisma Kapoor, Rahul & Akshaye Khanna, Shruti Hassan, Jacqueline Fernandes, Zayed Khan, Soha Ali Khan, Sophie Chodhury, Dia Mirza have walked as Show stopper for Manav…………..and nearly every single Bollywood Celebrity has worn his creations on the red carpet. Delhi Couture Week, Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week, IIFa and numerous other fashion weeks have seen Manav’s design on the runway……

He is also a, a multi-faceted designer who also paints comical canvases of people who inspire him in his spare time. He has painted for a number of celebrities like Karan Johar, Shahrukh Khan, Simi Garewal, Raveena Tandon Thadani, Amjad Ali Khan & family amongst many others. He has also combined with Sarod players Amaan Ali Khan  & Ayaan Ali Khan to release a music album ‘Passion’.Manav is also one of the most loved designer among his celebrity friends and has quite a fan following on ‘Twitter’………..’moi’ being one of the followers.

Manav Gangwani has recently opened his flagship store in the plush DLF Emporio, New Delhi. His recent ‘Timeless Affaire’ collection can be seen displayed at his store. I do wish to someday attend his creations on the runway and witness the drama and the bling in all it’s glory. But for now I am fortunate enough to get my chance to interact with the ‘Timeless Courtier’ himself………

A View inside Manav Gangwani’s Flagship Store at DLF Emporio

Interview With Designer Manav Gangwani

1.      Your recent Collection ‘Timeless Affaire’ is truly a work of Art…….what is the story behind this
‘fashion forward’ collection??

Manav Gangwani : I was Inspired by the Story of a warrior woman travelling through time going in and getting hold of her love and finding it and taking over it…. It’s my interpretation of a rendezvous between dream and reality transcending space and time, a fifth dimension solely entrenched in the realms of fantasy where desire merges with superstition to make dreams come alive.

2.      What is the toughest challenge that you face before showcasing a new collection at fashion weeks????

Manav Gangwani : It’s my intense compulsion, that I have to perform, I have to play it right, I have to leave my Audience Spellbound!!! And this at times is intensely stressful!!! Once, I move past this….& then of course the rest just works out….

3.      Saree or a Gown…….which one of these two makes your imagination run wild when it comes to designing?

Manav Gangwani : Tough Choice!!!!  Fashion is what makes my imagination run wild…..whatever the garment maybe!!
But if I have to make a choice, then it has to be sarees!!! There are so many ways you can play with the Drape,  it’s limitless…besides this, Blouses are my USP!!! I absolutely thrive on creating Stunning Blouses….

4.      How did you start off with fashion designing……… what inspired you to enter this field???

Manav Gangwani : Ever since I recollect my earliest thoughts, I have always wanted to be a designer. Clothes & Fashion have always been of great interest to me.

5.     You have designed outfits for the ‘Runway’ and made customized outfits for Celebrities…how would
you describe the difference between designing a collection and designing for a
particular person???

Manav Gangwani : When I design for the runway, it is a collection….I am exploring my Creativity as a Designer & as an Artist….While customizing outfits for Celebrities, However, I keep in mind What would accentuate the Celebrity’s personality, what the occasion is & of course, I am open to suggestions from them.

 

6.      Any Designer in particular whose work you admire???

 Manav Gangwani : I admire Gudda [Rohit Bal] & “Abu & Sandeep” [Abu Jani & Sandeep Khosla]

 

7.      You have dressed so many celebrities is there a particular ‘someone’ you would want to dress up on the red carpet?

Manav Gangwani : From Bollywood- Rekha of course!!! She is “The Diva” of Bollywood & I think she is breathtakingly gorgeous!!!From Hollywood – it has to be Angelina Jolie…..she has the most Stunning Figure & an indisputably alluring Face!!!I would also Love to Dress Oprah Winfrey…..Am completely taken by her personality & Elegance….. I admire her
tremendously!!!

 

8.      Wardrobe Essentials which you as a Designer feel every woman should have.

Manav Gangwani : A saree for sure!! It can be draped in different manners & in combination with options of blouses, can be worn to
suit various occasions.

9.      Heavy drapes, bold designs, crystal detail work, elaborate patterns, beautiful style of fabric layering …………What according to you is a ‘Manav Gangwani’ Signature style???

 Manav Gangwani : Specifically all my Collections are known for their “Bling” Factor!! Exquisite Swarovski  Crystal Detailing & Intricate cutworks are the Signature for “Manav Gangwani”

10.     You have also launched a new flagship store in DLF Emporio Mall, what’s next for the label ‘Manav Gangwani’?

Manav Gangwani : There are various projects in the pipeline, which I shall reveal as they are finalized….However, to mention a couple, I am opening my Showrooms in Dubai & Mumbai early next year.

11.     Manav’s personal style mantra would be……….

Manav Gangwani : Blue Jeans & White shirts, accessorized with a pop of color in the form of shoes & shades!!! I am addicted to them!!!

To see Manav’s Recent ‘Timeless Affaire’ Collection which was displayed at ‘Delhi Couture Week’ recently please click here. To know more about Manav Gangwani do visit his official website www.manavgangwani.com

Interview courtesy : Tandem Communications.

Photo Courtesy : www.FDCI.org

 

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Rinaldi Designs

Posted by Indian Fashion Police on July 1, 2011


I might be no Carrie Bradshaw who is absolutely obsessed with her shoes, but even a little devil in me loves to see glorious Chaussures in my wardrobe. I might not be a master at picking out shoes at a store, but I can certainly say that I recognize a good pair when I see one. As a teenager I was always hooked on to fashion mag ‘Femina’, that’s when I cam across an Indian shoe label ‘Rinaldi’ which is a brand created and run entirely by designer Rina Shah. I had never seen such a beautiful creations in sequins & crystals back then, and years one I still find Rina’s creation as alluring as ever. Hers was the very first designer shoe brand to emerge in India………..today I am fortunate enough to write about one of the pioneers of shoe designing in India plus get to interact with the designer herself for a short Q & A.




Rina Shah started her label in 1997 after graduating from Fashion Institute of Technology – New York, opened her first store in 1998, traveled the world with her creations to find admirers across major cities of the world. Celebrities have worn her creations in movies like Kuch, Kuch Hota hai, Dil toh Pagal hai, Jism……more celebrity clientele have worn her shoes on red carpet events. What is wonderfully different about Rinaldi shoes is that they are absolutely ‘Vegan’ – shoes are made from fabrics & fake leather……………….a shoe label with a heart………….Thank You God!!!

Her collection has expanded by leaps & bounds…………..she started out with casual & evening wear shoes for women but now has added bridal, menswear,  kidswear, bags, clutch, belts to her kitty. Rina Shah rocked the Lakme Fashion Week Resort/Summer 2011 with her Rinaldi Equestrian & Polo Collection where she introduced a new line for lovers of POLO and horses. Boots designed in India by an Indian is definitely new……….till now Indian Women have had to shop abroad for equestrian collection or opt for masculine options available here.

Rinaldi has been through alot of transformation since it’s inception which has always taken the label to another level. I must give credit to Rina Shah for boldly taking the step and entering shoe designing when people opted for easier options. Her handbags and Swaroski encrusted evening wear collection of shoes plus clutch are exceptional, Rinaldi is definitely a one shop stop for shoes for all occasions and for person of any age.

Rina has drawn inspiration from fashion labels like Hermes, DKNY, Ralph Lauren but of late it is her passion for horses which have taken center-stage for her recent collection. Playing Polo in India has never looked this good, Rina Shah has quickly become a favourite amongst leading Polo Players of the country and the Indian Royals.My wishlist for Rina Shah would be to see her design ‘Hats’ as well to complete her Equestrian Collection & to see her collection on International runways soon but that’s just me wishing…….. 🙂

On the Ramp : Rinaldi Equestrian & Polo Collection displayed at Lakme Fashion Week 2011


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am thankful to Rina for taking time out of her busy schedule to answer IFP’s questions…let me put it in this manner that a fashion crazy kid who used to go wide eyed looking at a ‘Rinaldi’ shoe featuring on the ‘Must have’ list in leading magazine years ago, just got her wish to have a heart to heart with the creator herself.


Q & A with Rina Shah, creator of Rinaldi Designs

1) How did you start off with designing shoes and bags when every other designer in India wanted to be a ‘Fashion Designer’?

Rina Shah : I saw a niche which was untouched and saw a huge potential in the indian market . Women love shoes and it was a great market to design for so I left for New York to study shoe designing then came back to India to kick start the business.

2) I remember reading about your Bridal creations in ‘Femina’ and magazines alike way back many years ago……..you were in this field way before anyone started in India. Has the journey been an easy one???

Rina Shah : Yes I started designing shoes when no one in India did that .. I was the first one to get in designer shoes in India when no one was selling high priced shoes … the journey was amazing not very easy especially when I was the only woman at that time entering a male dominated field …also working with all the uneducated cobblers, setting up a factory of 50 people when I was only 24 yrs old, was not very easy but it was very thrilling and exciting …. I wish I had project like that again …

3) From Bridal shoes & party clutches to Equestrian & Polo Collection………how has the transformation been so far???

Rina Shah :  I started with a casual and evening collection, since then its been pretty much bridal wear with lots of bling and stones ……………the transformation was needed.

4) What inspired you to design the Equestrian & Polo collection……….the concept I feel is still very fresh in India since I have not seen many designers enter this segment till now??

Rina Shah : Since a year I have started riding & learning to play polo, I have been so passionate about horses ….that truly inspired me to start and design an equestrian collection … I also like to pick things that are not done and have a niche …. this collection came from the heart, taking it all over the world with the equestrian clubs and riding.

5) You have had a successful show at Lakme Fashion Week this year………..What can we expect to see from the brand ‘Rinaldi’ in future fashion weeks???

Rina Shah :   Yes the show was great, being my first show at LFW I got a great response …I am hoping to the take collection International……………until then if I have a fresh idea or something different I will not do fashion week … but this year will be taking collection to London , USA and St. Moritz.

6) You already had the top Polo Players of our country walk the runway for you during fashion week. Anyone in particular you would love to see wear your creations???

Rina Shah : I think  I would like the top players of the world like World Class Polo player Sunny Hale and Nina Clarion … also would like to dress top players like Adolfo Cambiaso and Nacho Figueras.

7) We know alot about the label ‘Rinaldi’, but what is the Designer Rina Shah’s personal style mantra???

Rina Shah :    I like to keep it simple but different …. stylish but confident ……sexy but sophisticated.

8) Where are ‘Rinaldi’ Shoes, bags & Accessories available in India or abroad??

Rina Shah :  Our flag ship  store is  Rinaldi Couture  33 Altamount road , near Melange, Mumbai plus Rinaldi is available at all the Kimaya stores, Aza stores, Camomile , 85 Lansdowne in Kolkata, Shimmer in Bangalore. International it is available across 20 stores in countries like USA, Japan, UK etc..

You can visit Rinaldi’s official Website www.rinaldidesigns.com or visit her Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/pages/RInaldi-Equestrian-Polo-Collection to get more updates about her label.

Photo courtesy : Rinaldi’s Official website & Facebook Page

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Alpana Gujral – Classic takes on Contemporary Form

Posted by Indian Fashion Police on May 25, 2011

The Mughal dynasty – one of the greatest that ever ruled our Indian soil. Though the Mughals are no more, but their legacy continues to exist in India through the beautiful architecture that we see around us, the Persian Art that they brought from far lands, the Mughal cuisine to tantalize the taste buds and the breath-taking jewelry which I consider the ultimate gift from this dynasty.

These days one gets to see jewelry designer take the modern route when it comes to designing jewelry, the traditional is often forgotten…………..but Designer Alpana Gujral is an exception. She has successfully blended the vintage with contemporary to create the most magnificent pieces.

Alpana Gujral is daughter of India’s eminent painter Satish Gujral who is a man of many talents………..she grew up seeing his beautiful works & learned to appreciate ‘Art’ from a young age. Studied at Delhi School of Art in interior designing, she later ventured into her passion of designing jewelry………….I can absolutely say that if I have to turn to a designer who has in-depth knowledge about Indian jewelry it will only be Alpana Gujral.

The amazing colours, the use of a variety of gemstones, the carving on every single piece……………it is like she treats every creation of hers as a master-piece. A person like me would want to simply  stare and admire this ‘Work of Art’. Alpana extensively uses ancient Indian style of jewelry making like Minakari, Jadau, Polki, Navratan setting……………..she gets the pieces created in Rajasthan and Delhi but showcases it around the world. She has even incorporated her father’s paintings in her creations…….’Art’ displayed in form of jewelry is unheard off…………. Such imagination makes her collection unique for every client. A lady who is known for her elegant style keeps a low profile………….I guess because her beautiful work speaks so much about her.

If I ever wanted to buy a classic piece of jewelry which I could pass on to my next generation…….it would not be the French ‘Cartier’, the American ‘Tiffany’ or an Italian ‘Bvlgari’ but a very Indian ‘Alpana Gujral’. If the Mughals still existed, I am sure Alpana would have given them a very ‘Contemporary’ look which would have made them stand out amongst other Royals.

I am truly fortunate enough to get to interact with Ms.Gujral for a short Q & A session. Despite being busy showcasing her ‘Rang Rasa’ collection in America currently, she managed to take out sometime for answering my questions. I am thankful to her for giving me this wonderful opportunity and present to you a ‘Pioneer’ in designing Contemporary Indian Jewelry in an honest way.

Q & A with Designer Alpana Gujral

Alpana Gujral [centre] with models at the showcasing of her ‘Shwetambari’ collection

1) Creativity is in your blood, but apart from your family what inspired and drew you towards the profession of jewelery making???

Alpana: My passion for jewelry and all things beautiful led me to design.  It was my desire for creative expression that took me down this path.

2) You have a range of jewelery made in Jadau, Polki, Pearls and Precious gems set in Gold & silver……….but which collection is close to your heart???

Alpana: My vision comes from my heart so it’s hard to choose. There is continuity in my designs but each piece is distinct in form.  The essence of my jewelry remains the same – feminine with floral patterns.  Each piece is a vintage revival using different variations with fresh designs and eclectic elements.

3) You have successfully presented Indian traditional jewelry in a contemporary form……….was it difficult for you to get people from abroad to notice your designs when the entire world was looking west??

Alpana: No because there is definitely a niche market for Indian jewelry abroad.  In cities like New York, Hong Kong, San Francisco there is a demand for things exotic and foreign.

With India becoming more mainstream, people are taking more of an interest in exploring products from India.   It’s this awareness and acceptance that builds the demand. The seasoned buyers are aware and will always come to my shows but it’s also important to educate the curious buyer.

4) Every creation of yours speaks of an exquisite tale, is there a story behind every new collection that you present???

Alpana: Everything and everyone has a story. I strive to capture the essence of beauty in each of my designs while also incorporating a piece of our history.  Vision for my jewelry reflects how nature and beauty come together effortlessly, they are intertwined.

As with all Art, there are no facts – only interpretations.

5) What would be your Jewelery style prediction for the upcoming wedding season???

Alpana: While jewelry trends may vary, bridal jewelry is not as volatile……it’s really the contemporary take on traditions that appeals to the bride of today.

6) Future of the jewelery label ‘Alpana Gujral’………..where do you plan to showcase your jewelery line in future??

Alpana: I have a studio in Delhi where I showcase by appointment only.

7) The label ‘Alpana Gujral’ is well known among fashionistas, but what is the personal style of the designer behind this label??

Alpana: Style to me is comfort – it should be effortless – flowing clothes with complementary jewels is my staple look.

I feel that jewelry is wearable Art and clothes are the canvas

You can visit Alpana Gujral’s official website www.alpanagujral.com to view her recent collections and contact details. Make sure you have a prior appointment before you visit her studio.

Photo courtesy : www.alpanagujral.com

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Aruna Seth – The Shoe Fairy

Posted by Indian Fashion Police on April 4, 2011

For all the Cinderellas around the world, Aruna Seth is definitely God sent……………..especially on their Wedding Day. This young entrepreneur has been creating waves in the Bridal industry for her elegant designs. She has dressed celebrities like Goldie Hawn, Sophia Bush, Paris Hilton, Emily Blunt to name a few on the red carpet in her famous creations. Every celebrity in London owns at least one pair of ‘Aruna Seth’.

Her creations have featured in magazines like Vogue UK, Wedding, Brides, OK!, UK Tatler, Hello!, Good Housekeeping, Grazia…….her shoes get featured every single month in a number of bridal magazines in UK. But the question still lingers in my mind…………… Who is the face behind this big brand ‘Aruna Seth’???

Designer Aruna displaying her creation

Aruna Seth has had a major influence of her family since the beginning……………. her father – the creator of ‘Ascot’ brand of shoes, is an established name in the shoe business. Her father hails from India while her mother is from Jamaica & the family settled in UK, Aruna got to see the best of both the worlds. She learnt the craft of shoe making from her father by helping him overlook the day-to-day work at their shoe workshop. She later learnt footwear designing from London College of Fashion and started her own brand in 2006.

Each of the beautiful shoe is handcrafted in Italy to ensure best quality and designs only 100 pairs of each design for exclusivity purpose. Aruna emphasizes not just on outer beauty of the shoes, but also inner comfort with special pads on the inside. Unlike other designer shoes, you can wear her shoes and walk around for hours without any pain. Aruna Seth’s shoes are definitely for keeps for years, they will still rock even if they are many years old. My say is if you want Ultra luxury in Footwear, Aruna Seth is your answer………

Though many people in India are still unaware of her label, I am sure she won’t be a stranger once her creations are showcased here. My style wish for Aruna Seth would be to see every Indian celebrity wearing her amazing shoes on the red carpet……………till now the shoe choices of our desi celebrities on the red carpet has not been that commendable. Hope Aruna can help change that……..:-)

One of the famous designs of Aruna Seth have to be the Farfalla Butterfly heel collection which have the crystal butterfly motif on a peep toe shoes………….the choice of heels or flat is yours. Also another creationof hers which I regularly see on the red carpet are the beautiful crystal bow heels & wedges, one of the creation is displayed below in Scarlett red……………..Love at first sight………There are shoes designed in Lace, Boots in suede, strappy sandals & handbags in leather and clutch bags with crystal detailing in her collection. The entire range is available in a bouquet of alluring colours which will surely take your breath away.

I am fortunate enough that for my very first section ‘Interview with the Designer’ I was able to get a quick Q & A session with the Creator herself. She & her PR manager were kind enough to acknowledge the existence of my teeny tiny website. I wish her more success and wish she would showcase her creations in India soon.

Q & A with Aruna Seth



1. Major influences in your life……….Who has been the inspiration for you to enter the shoe world?

Aruna : My father, who has been making shoes for over 40 years, designing and creating beautiful shoes. Designing shoes is in my blood.

2. My signature style is…

Aruna : Sparkly Swarovski, the cerise wedge is the Aruna Seth signature shoe, I hoped to liven up traditional bridal shoes with a bit of glamour

3. Your Shoe creation which is ‘HOT’ right now is…

Aruna : The Aruna Seth crystal butterfly shoes, the perfect height for some glamour, a beautiful crystal butterfly on the peep-toe, padded for extra comfort and available in different colours from nude, ivory, candy pink and fuchsia pink…Katherine Jenkins owns two pairs of the butterfly shoes after being unable to make up her mind on just one shoe.

4. The perfect wedding shoe is…

Aruna : One which compliments your wedding dress perfectly in terms of colour and material…there is no perfect shoe w.r.t to shape & colour, brides can be experimental when it comes to shoes and try a hint of colour.

5. The key to picking the perfect shoes is…

Aruna : Choose what you love, don’t leave the shoe picking until last-minute as shoes are equally as important as the dress, comfort is key, pick the right height for your dress, consider your location as wedges may be best for a garden wedding and be a shoeaholic its your wedding so pick shoes for your hen-party, wedding and honey-moon.

6. Any Wedding tips you can give our readers when it comes to choosing the perfect shoes for the D-day.

Aruna : Always keep in mind that work with your wedding dress to find the perfect shoe.  Use material swatches to compare your dress and shoes.  Pick a shoe colour matching your wedding dress colour; a pristine white dress goes best with white or a pale pearl colour and an off-white gown, goes best with pearl or ivory-coloured bridal shoes.  If your dress is long, shoes with embellishments or spike heels may damage the fabric.  If your dress is short then the shoes are on display, a bit of fancy sparkle on your shoe may be more important.


7. One thing about designing shoes that always makes you smile

Aruna : Supplying bridal shoes for what is meant to be the happiest day of someones life is extremely satisfying.  Many of our brides stay in touch and send us pictures.[Check out the pics on her Facebook page] We’ve even heard of a pair of Aruna Seth bridal shoes upstaging the bride and being photo-graphed more than she was.

Aruna Seth is the first Designer to feature in new ‘Interview with the Designer’ section on Indian Fashion Police. To know more about her collection, recent launch and make purchases please visit her official website www.arunaseth.com or ‘Like’ her Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/pages/ARUNA-SETH.

Photo Courtesy : http://www.arunaseth.com

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