Meet the Designers: Celebrating India

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This May Bicester Village's All Things India experience played host to an exciting new concept store, Celebrating India. Guests were able to explore new voices in fashion and style, home and interiors, textiles and craft from a collection of designers changing the face of modern Indian design.

Bicester Village

This boutique is now closed, but please do discover more about the exciting, innovative designers who showcased their work below...

MANISH ARORA

Manish Arora is one of the most celebrated contemporary designers of our time, often called “The John Galliano of India”, in reference to his psychedelic prints and kitsch motifs. Arora launched his brand in 1997, following studies at the National Institute of Fashion Technology in New Delhi, and went on to enjoy a successful career; showcasing his collection at the first ever India Fashion Week, collaborating with Reebok and expanding his business internationally. In early 2011 he was appointed as Creative Director at French fashion house Paco Rabanne, a role he held for two years.

https://www.manisharora.com/

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Manish is one of the most vivacious and inspiring contemporary designer in fashion. With his prowess, he has sparkled in many parts of the world, and hence made a mark of his signature style which is a unique melange of colours and intricate craftsmanship.

 

PIPPA SMALL

Growing up in a family of travellers and artists, bohemian jewellery design came naturally to Pippa Small. With a master’s in anthropology, Pippa went on to work all over the world with artisans creating unique handmade jewellery which was quickly recognised by influential editors. Her success was followed by store openings in London and Los Angeles along with devoted fans such as the Duchess of Sussex.

To reconnect with the communities she encountered on her many travels, Pippa Small partnered with the Turquoise Mountain foundation in 2008, with an aim to revive forgotten local craft traditions and educate new designers in Asia and the Middle East.

https://www.pippasmall.com/

 

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I believe the perfect piece of jewellery is a personal one. It’s a piece that is imbued with memory, association, pleasure, with a place perhaps, hopefully bringing emotive connections for future generations to come.

 

TIIPOI

Tiipoi is a design studio and brand based between Bangalore and London, founded by Spandana Gopal. Tiipoi challenges perspectives of what is considered as ‘Indian design’, taking into account India’s colonial history and the role India plays in mass-producing ‘crafted’ products for The West. The brand's challenge is to position itself as an Indian design studio, allowing lesser-known concepts of design-thinking from India – particularly around issues of the sustainability of materials and waste – to enter into the wider dialogue surrounding contemporary design today.

https://tiipoi.com/

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India fascinates and inspires us. We think that there is more to Indian design than just sticking an elephant on it, and that Indian craft has more to offer than simply repeating the past.

 

DHRUV KAPOOR

A graduate of Istituto Marangoni in Milan, Dhruv Kapoor worked at Italian fashion house Etro before founding his own label. With an eye for detail, Kapoor weaves together his collections by fusing coordinating and mismatched pieces, resulting in timeless and ageless designs. Kapoor was the winner of the prestigious Vogue India Fashion Fund Award in 2015, and his creations have been worn by superstars from Bollywood to Hollywood.

https://www.dhruvkapoor.com/

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Far from traditional aesthetic imagery, the brand depicts an endless play of past, present, and future. It is an unrestrained reflection of contemporary society and its interactions with the most diverse cultures where convention is re-defined in the tireless search of new perspectives.

 

BEHNO

Founder and creative director for Behno, Shivam Punjya began his career studying political economics and global poverty, later focusing on a master’s in women’s health. Working with textile weavers during his thesis research, Punjya launched accessories brand Benho, building it on six core pillars ranging from garment-worker health to family planning and eco-consciousness. The Business of Fashion recently highlighted Behno in an ‘it’ bag feature, praising the brand’s ethical stance and word-of-mouth success.

https://behno.com/

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Our mission is to redefine and bring sharp awareness to sustainability and ethics to fashion. We will set a new standard for manufacturing for the global garment trade that revolutionises the way garment workers and artisans are treated, viewed, and employed.

 

ATTOM BY KHOSLA JANI

Eveningwear brand Attom is a sub-brand of Khosla Jani, the brainchild of designers Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla. The duo is best known for reinventing the traditional Mughal arts of ‘chikan’ and ‘zardozi’ – two traditional, distinguished Indian embroideries. Joining forces in 1986, neither designer possessed any formal education in design. Beginning with a small boutique, today they are one of the most coveted couture labels in India.

http://khoslajani.com/

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We believe in creating the most flamboyant, unashamedly extravagant outfits; in presenting a totally glamorous version of India, and of this world, for people who have forgotten how to dream.

Abu Sandeep

 

HUEMN

Founded by designer duo Pranav Misra and Shyma Shetty, Huemn creates “products and imagery that aim to instigate thought and inspire conversation”. The brand’s young and dynamic style has won acclaim internationally, with ELLE magazine referring to the brand as “India’s favourite alt-fashion label”. Huemn’s edgy streetwear aesthetic features hoodies, oversized T-shirts and sneakers elevated by luxuriously handmade surfaces.

https://www.huemn.in/

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With an ethos that is enriched with individual voices in our communities, crosscurrents in culture, alternative art and a collaborative effort and love for all things handmade.

 

KANIKA GOYAL

As a graduate of the prestigious National Institute of Fashion Technology in New Delhi, and Parsons School of Design in New York, Kanika Goyal continued her practical education at renowned fashion houses Prada and Marchesa. In 2014, she took the next step in her career, launching her own ready-to-wear brand by applying the skills she had acquired in refined tailoring and garment technology. Her style is often referred to as ‘provocative minimalism’ – a well-balanced fusion of The West’s simple silhouettes and India’s bold patterns.

https://www.notjustalabel.com/kanika-goyal-label

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With its roots dug deep in quality craftsmanship and refined tailoring, the Kanika Goyal Label finds its identity through venturing into provocative minimalism.

 

KASHMIR LOOM

Kashmir Loom was founded by Jenny Housego and Asaf Ali together with Ali's brothers in Srinagar, the beautiful lake capital of the Indian province of Kashmir. Jenny and the Ali brothers – along with their team of master craftsmen – infuse modern soul into their woven and embroidered shawls from the Kashmir Valley, endeavouring to preserve heritage while fostering its progress. As the creative force behind the company, Jenny draws inspiration from her studies in art history and her deep love, knowledge and respect for textiles from India and the Middle East, combining it with the age-old art of shawl-making to create unique Kashmir Loom pieces.

https://kashmirloom.com/

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Each piece is hand-combed, hand-spun, hand-woven and hand-embroidered in Kashmir using subtle textures and softly harmonising colours.

 

BEULAH

Ethical luxury womenswear brand Beulah was born in 2009 when founders Natasha Rufus Isaacs and Lavinia Brennan embarked on a volunteer mission to India and witnessed the devastating reality of modern-day slavery. Beulah’s focus is on helping vulnerable women escape poverty and empowering them with craftsmanship skills to gain economic independence. To support this goal, 10% of Beulah’s profits are invested into supporting charities, while the brand delivers employability training to survivors of human trafficking at its head office in London.

https://www.beulahlondon.com/

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Committed to the freedom of vulnerable women through meaningful employment opportunities.

 

SZ BLOCKPRINTS

SZ Blockprints was founded by Sarah Zellweger. Originally from New York, she is now based in London by way of California and Jaipur and is Head Designer of the brand.

Seeking a modern reimagining of traditional patterns, SZ Blockprints was a long-standing dream for Sarah, which she made a reality after years of juggling multiple jobs and a fortuitous meeting with a multi-generational printing family in Jaipur. Together the SZ Blockprints team collaborates on design and production and runs the brand's charitable arm, SZ Foundation, together.

https://www.szblockprints.com/

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Each pattern has its own story and history, so before making anything we speak to our printers to find out how old it is, when it was last used and as much as we can about its historical significance.

 

TADA & TOY

Jewellery brand Tada & Toy was launched by best friends Tansy Aspinall and Victoria Van Holthe in London 2014. The duo play with Indian symbolism and Scandinavian influences in designing their affordable and timeless pieces, which are perfect for layering. Committed to an ethical production process, all materials are responsibly sourced and handmade at local artisan workshops in Jaipur, India.

https://www.tadaandtoy.com/

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Tada is Tansy's childhood nickname and Toy is Victoria's. We wanted a name that was unique, personal and could become its own entity.

Tags: designers india fashion contemporary luxury homeware huemn dhruv kapoor pippa small tiipoi behno attom manish arora kanika goyal kashmir loom

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