Contemporary Indian fashion has come a long way from the hand-selected runway luxury designers that accommodated a giant market share. The new shift that has come in has added an influx of new-age contemporary desi designers – luxury and otherwise – that step away from the rules of the norm and present to you, their original niche.
While there are spectacular designers especially names that you know of – the likes of Sabyasachi Mukherjee, Tarun Tahiliani, Manish Malhotra, Masaba Gupta, Ritu Kumar and so on - we introduce you to the new aesthetics of hand craftsmanship and kitsch labels. These are brands that are slowly and steadily making a mark, garnering a loyal clientele including fashion-savvy celebs like Sonam Kapoor, often on the merit of word-of-mouth and fantastic social media posts.
The Jodi Life
As someone who has been following them for a while, I am a big fan and shopper of their pieces. With engaging content and stunning pieces – their concept is simple and largely based around local craft and culture, they highlight the artisanal process of hand-block painting in charming designs. Sonam Kapoor recently wore one of their newer silk Sarees and another blossom dress during promotions for her movie, Ek Ladki ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga. Although based in Pune, they ship worldwide and their pieces start from anywhere between Dhs 250 – Dhs 1500.
This was one of the first Indian contemporary brands that I accidentally discovered. Meaning ‘to wear’ in Marwari (local Rajasthani language), the brand celebrates the savior faire of Indian art, craft and textile – through exceptionally beautiful pieces. Luxuriously priced, but they create stunning handmade Indian wear and dresses. Their spring-summer 2019 collection has been entirely illustrated and celebrates every brush stroke and colour strand.
If you are looking for simpler pieces with design detail – that fit like a glove and work well for every day, you needn’t look further. The designer behind this Delhi-based brand, Rashi Jain saw a missing need in the market for quality, eye-catching pieces that are custom-made yet accessible. In smaller capsule collections, the brand puts together a stunning selection of contemporary, playful and colourful pieces. Adding the touch of custom-made, they make your measurements make your ‘best match’.
Vastra by Milonee
One of my favourite Instagram influencers to follow, What Wear Who – tend to highlight regional brands – and that is where I came across Vastraa by Milonee. It is an incredibly cute brand with many beautiful prints and designs – every piece perfect for the summer! They cater to all kinds of preferences – whether it’s something colourful and pastel or someone who prefers a more toned down palette.
Picchika by Urvashi Sethi
If you are dreaming of intricately hand-painted peonies, muscari, fuschias, apple flowers on delicate silk sarees, Picchika by Urvashi Sethi is something you should look at. Creating enticing collections that define artistry and a sense of divinity, Picchika has quickly become a household name in Bollywood. Their effortless Indian wear stands out with its simplicity, timeless elegance and pieces that will imprint in memory forever. Luxuriously priced, trust me, you’ll want to bookmark this.