Having been invited to showcase at the Paris Haute Couture Week last November, my atelier was met with momentous news—one of great joy, a sense of accomplishment and challenge. ‘Haute Couture’, as defined by the French governing body of fashion, FHCM, translates to ‘high dressmaking’—the best there is, in fashion, craftsmanship, tailoring and artistic value. As would be any designer’s dream, the honour was bestowed upon me to showcase at the prestigious platform alongside the world’s best and most reputed pioneers of fashion.
We had eight to 10 weeks to craft a collection that would represent the best we could put out. Being the first designer from India to showcase at the platform, it had to be an appropriate representation of the country while being true to our own identity.
It was an opportunity to explore my clothes as a canvas for my vivid imagination—the infinite incessant thoughts that would only be vaguely translated in prêt-àporter otherwise. It was a beautiful dream with some not-so-handsome turns. Being a slow fashion brand, our preferred processes of craftsmanship, such as hand weaving and hand embroidery, take eons to make the first sample.
I remember sitting across the khat (embroidery frame) with some embroiderers, my textiles team, discussing the 14th colour we intended to use on the painterly embroidery artwork that was placed on the dress and contemplating the thought of participation.
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October 23, 2020