Forbes India 15th Anniversary Special

Integrating Indian culture into the global fashion industry

My experience in the world of fashion starts from designing styles in college to developing textiles for corporates, and finally developing my own line of clothing

Published: Aug 25, 2020 12:50:04 PM IST
Updated: Aug 27, 2020 10:39:33 AM IST

Integrating Indian culture into the global fashion industry
Equipped with a textile designing degree, my corporate journey in fashion began with designers (Rohit Bal, Satya Paul, Reena Dhaka & more). Later I moved to managing factory operations and merchandizing with medium to large garment exporters and leading buying houses like Target, Triburg, Sears and the biggest of them all GAP Inc.

After 7 years in the corporate world of fashion, I started my own enterprise where my aim was to bring competitively priced textiles from across the globe for leading world fashion Brands (Zara, Diesel, Banana Republic, GAP, Richard Quinn , American Eagle, Jigsaw ,Maje, Calvin Klein, Macy’s, Urban Outfitters, H&M, Marks & Spencer’s, Next, A&F, Hollister, Walmart, C&A, Oliver, George and many more) & Garment Exporters across India, and South-East Asia.

I have worked with over 3000 textile factories and delivered high fashion fabrics like Sequins, Embroidery, Digital Prints, Laces, Silk , Velvet, Jacquards alongside basics that include: Cottons, Knits, Elevated Polyesters, Rayon, Cottons , Linen, Tencel and more.

After years of working with poly-fibres, my company has decided to focus on sustainable fashion by working with handlooms which are hand-made natural fibres. Sustainable fashion is the direction the industry must move towards, the fashion industry alone accounts for 8-10% of global CO2 emissions. Handmade natural fibre fabrics have smaller carbon footprints because of the reduced electricity demand, and the dyes used are either organic or natural. Hence, handlooms are eco-friendly and prove to be a sustainable alternative. India is where i wanted to start because at one point in time Indian handloom weavers once contributed significantly to the global fabric trade and today they are almost non-existent for fashion trends are dominated by poly-fibres and machines. My goal is to connect these weavers to the global market and revive the handloom sector of India which is slowly declining. Currently 33% of weavers (12.4 million people) are part of the declining side of this industry mainly due to the lack of exposure in foreign markets. We are currently moving in a direction where generations of artisans and craftsmen are moving away from handlooms and I am currently filling that void. 

We are now one of the top suppliers or sustainable natural manmade fabrics & products working with over 50,000 Weavers & Artisans from across India. It is time we take advantage of globalisation and share the benefits of natural manmade fabrics & wares to drive wellness & sustainability into fashion.  My dream is to see our beautiful, traditional weaves & handicrafts gracing the world of fashion, and help these artisans connect with the world. Make artisanal sustainable fashion.

Our focus is in creating a network through which the artisans can distribute their products at a fair price with consistently improving demand. We are committed to educating these artisans around improved production planning & supplies with consistent product quality. Thereby reviving the viability of this exceptional industry and helping these workers realise their due through better more consistent returns.

We are now taking these sustainable products to fashion majors globally and driving millennial consciousness around “environmentally friendly-wellness fabrics”. We have have recently developed natural fibre sustainable fabric which was featured at the MET Store Gala Camp collection 2019, London Fashion Week, Catwalk for Glamour AW 2020-21 shows.

We are committed to our initiative & mission of building a network of artisans to:

A. Reach their product into the global consumption grid.

B. Educate them on global quality, standards, demand etc.

C. Realize fair prices for their hard work through a world of responsible brands & consumers.

Committed with great pride to the “Made in India: initiative.

Disclaimer: The views, suggestions and opinions expressed here are the sole responsibility of the experts. No Forbes India journalist was involved in the writing and production of this article.