Famous fashion designer Amit Aggarwal combines the best of locally sourced factors with a progressive aesthetic, resulting in precisely executed garments, which represent the metamorphosis of raw influences, both fantastical and mundane. He talks about his collection, which is modern and eclectic, yet holds timeless appeal.
His collection ‘Monaco from the heart of Kashi’, is an inspiration from the art and heritage of picturesque wedding destination Monaco. “I had been on a holiday in Monaco almost a year ago and I had already started working on Banarasi sarees, to revitalise them and to give them a new life. There (Monaco) I realised that there is a huge connection between the aesthetics of art nouveau and the patterns of Banarasi work. And that’s what I exploited in my collection.”
The metallic textures and details in draped dresses are his favourite for this festive season, making almost every body type look great. He says, “Metallic textures are actually upcycled polymer sheets. They are made with recycled material and ours is the first sustainable couture line in the country. We are conscious about the materials in the couture, we retail the brand in 18 countries.”
Was it challenging? “It was quite a challenge! But we knew that would be in store. We did some R&D for the same. Making clothes is what designers do, but at the same time we also have to give something back to the environment and it also pays for better future. And this was one of the ideas that I thought of trying and do something which is opulent yet conscious at the same time.”
He showcased his autumn-winter bridal collections from Lakme Fashion Week 2017 at his store at Ogaan, Hyderabad. “For me honestly, the culture of the bridal in the country is radically changing. I feel that over the last five years we have seen a radical shift in what brides are wearing now and what brides will wear in near future. I target a very individualistic person, I try to look at the person, who has their own point of view and has a mind of the devil, that’s where the bridal collection fits in. Its appellant rich, it fits the purpose and also has its uniqueness.”
Amit is pleased with his Hyderabadi clients, “I realise that Hyderabad is also going through a big shift. I think weddings are an occasion to have something very contemporary and modern. As marriages in India do recruit tradition but at the same time they are multiple events of celebrations. Girls want to experiment something new, which has not been done before. It’s a special day in their life and they want to feel different and special.”
“For me, each client comes with a certain personality and someone who first tries to understand what the client is inherently as a person because I do believe that clothes are very important part of a wedding but at the same time they are not more important than the person who is going to wear them. So, it’s important to understand their comfort and it’s also important to understand that till what point they are ready to experiment or take challenges and what would they actually feel comfortable about at the end of the day and feel special about it. And for me every client interaction in that way is unique and individual experience,” he adds.
About his upcycled dresses that incorporate old Patola he says, “Basically the whole story of trying to revive the saree as a textile and trying to create something new out of it is what I have been trying to work on from past two years. Last season we tried to upcycle the ‘patola’, which is a used and discarded saree. We collected these sarees from different places and saved parts of it and used them to make an entire saree giving it a modern look.”
He thinks Bollywood impacts people and says, “I think Bollywood is a very crucial factor, and it becomes one of the strongest approaches to culture. I think the young generation does look at a lot of Bollywood films. I mean Bollywood in all respects, be it ‘Lipstick Under My Burkha’ or ‘Queen’, every movie has an interesting take and as a country, it appeals to a larger audience than anything else. I do feel that Bollywood is an important factor that one cannot ignore.”
His piece of advice for the upcoming fashion designers is, “Be yourself, think before you lie, you know what helps you.”