Fashion is missing a soul: Designer Priyadarshini Rao

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Mumbai, Aug 27 (IANS) Designer Priyadarshini Rao, who has completed 20 years in the fashion industry, says that nowadays the industry is missing a soul. However, she says that now the young designers understand what the Indian textile is all about and it’s a good change.

“Very often I feel that fashion is missing a soul,” Rao told IANS when asked about the one thing that the industry is missing nowadays.

She also says that she is not the part of that mad race where people are trying to be at the top.

“I have been in this industry for 20 years now. I do not think I am part of this race and yet I make a decent living. Every industry is made up of people who are competitive… be it movies, art, banking or politics. The fashion industry is no different,” she added.

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Rao started her label in 1996. Her objective was to focus on women who had refined their fashion taste to embrace what is considered to be more contemporary and modern, amalgamating their Indianness with a broader view of the world.

She prefers to define her work as luxury pret and believes that her customer is someone who seeks an elegant and evolved clothing solution, rather than a frivolous fashion victim chasing fleeting fashion fads.

At the ongoing Lakme Fashion Week (LFW) Winter/Festive 2016, she showcased a collection that was inspired by the Japanese embroidery Sashiko.

“The motifs from this Japanese embroidery have been used in prints. Fabrics were new-age naturals like modal, bemberg and tencel. We also used patchwork, pin tucks and pleating as surface textures,” she said.

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Being a textile enthusiast, she feels that ever since sustainable fashion has come into vogue, one has seen more handlooms and hand-worked textiles and clothing on the fashion runways.

“This is certainly a positive change. The eye for detail has reemerged and the younger brigade now understands what the Indian heritage is all about,” she said.

She also feels that modernising textile art will add to its longevity.

“Having an indigenous fashion industry will serve us well for decades to come. It will help conserve our crafts and age-old traditions by keeping them trendy. Designers play a key role by bringing textile art to the consumer and I believe that modernising these arts will add to its longevity,” she said.

The well-established designer’s clothing is retailed out of over 15 premium boutiques in India. But there is one thing that she has stayed away from – designing for Bollywood films.

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“I find it difficult to deal with celebrities’ tantrums and mood swings,” she said.

(The writer is in Mumbai at the invitation of LFW organisers. Nivedita can be contacted at [email protected])



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