When Maria Grazia Chiuri said ‘I would mix it all together, probably because I was looking for my identity’, I found that her words described my situation perfectly. My love for fashion began as an adolescent, trying to figure out who I was. I saw accessories representing different aspects of myself that I chose to express myself. Eventually, in the hope of trying to express myself better, I enrolled in a course in fashion styling at Pearl Academy. It was during this course that I found my calling: I wanted to design the clothes that I was styling so that I could express myself even better.
I feel like fashion design has always been my calling. Before the world of social media existed, I vividly remember clipping magazines and making mood boards to make my own trend analysis of the season. Even today, I use technology to make mood boards during fashion weeks; I often find myself anxiously waiting for pictures of celebrities at big events like the Met Gala, the Academy Awards, and the Cannes Film Festival.
While growing up, sometimes I used to design Indian clothes for mother, sister and of course, myself. Id take my sketches and mood boards with me to boutiques and would ask them to stitch the garment.
I have come to realize that the real power of design or commerce is only unlocked when they are combined and applied in conjunction with other fields of study. For example, it is very important to understand the demand of the market before designing a collection and no collection can be successful without the right marketing strategy.
Connections of this nature lead to fascinating emergent properties, compared to which a fragmented understanding of isolated fields is myopic. I am a believer in logical deduction and gain knowledge through experiential induction. But the search for this interconnected knowledge is what drives me and is exactly what I have searched for in all my experiences thus far. It is what I have naturally gravitated towards throughout my life and is so central to my personality that any evaluation of me would be incomplete without it.
This is exactly why I imagine that an educational experience at NIFT will satiate my academic inclinations. NIFT is an environment in which I would be able to connect my passion for design with my appreciation of commerce and experience the connection of these fields at an academic level. Maria Grazia Chiuri, who I quoted earlier, also created one of my most favorite collections: the Dior Resort 2020 collection. She worked with artisans from Africa and mixed it with the French style of fashion. This is what I draw inspiration from, and what I aim to do in the future: Id like to curate a collection that incorporates the rich Indian heritage and craftsmanship with beautiful French tailoring. This is my beautiful situation.