By Sujata Assomull
October 25, 2020 (IANSlife) Shivan and Narresh prove they are still India’s “breakout” swimwear brand with their new fashion film, #Wilding20.
Shivan Bhatia and Narresh Kukreja started their label ten years ago and made an immediate splash. Their label, is the first designer label to make everything swim their mainstay, be it a vibrant maillot made for glam beach vacay or a resort wedding worthy swimsuit inspired sari — theirs’ was the first luxe resort wear label.
Adding décor and events to their repertoire, the brand's ten anniversary celebration was set to kick off in March with one huge fashion extravaganza in Delhi. Then the pandemic hit—and changed everything, including the label’s own approach to their landmark moment.
Says Narresh Kukreja, “Wilding 20s is a design philosophy that we as a brand feel will define the decade ahead. Akin to the last century when wars, economic crises created moments like the Roaring 20s and the Flower Power of the 60s, we are at this point standing at a threshold. This is the time to escape from set patterns and behaviour and break free into a ‘Wilder’ but a more conscious being.” The fashion film streamed on their Instagram account. 55 looks that roar with colour were shot at rocky lakes of the Aravalli range near Delhi. With this expansive and unexpected setting, five new “Shivan and Narresh” prints were unveiled, all inspired by elements of nature and wildlife. The label’s most focused line to date- it covers all aspects of travel- from skiing to a staycation. A new maturity was evident.
Some may question this sudden more mindful take on design, to which the label’s brand manager, Siddhartth Mahajan says, “Mindfulness is probably the core innovation of this year and it flows equally from the customer as it does from the brand. The biggest change has been to edit the drops in terms of width and depth to offer a balance of newness and commercial silhouettes, not only will this promote mindful consumption but also mindful production with lesser waste.” In terms of fabrics they have developed all knits in house, ensuring a more responsible attitude to waste, and early next year, they will launch a line that is made out of 90 percent recycled polyester yarns. It is clearl they have taken the plunge towards becoming a sustainable swim and resort wear brand.
The boys behind the label were recently criticized for “irresponsible” behaviour during the lockdown, their Instagram account showed them making the most of the confinement, by enjoying parties at friend’s houses. To this Shivan Bhatiya has a simple reply, “Our brand is known for indulgent recreation. Obviously the pandemic travel has taken away the core concept of from everyone’s lives. Our homes became our holidays and our only hope to escape these uncertain times. People need to see positivity and to see you can still live a good life being indoors, spending quality time dressing up for yourselves or with your close friends and family and create moments and memories, while taking all necessary safety measures.”
It is a reminder that in life there are always two sides to everything—that you can be more mindful in your approach to life yet be a bon vivant, that you can be a conscious consumer yet be a girl who enjoys fashion, that you can be free spirited yet be a responsible person. To me this is the true message of the #Wilding20s collection.
The writer Sujata Assomull is an IANSlife columnist. Assomull is the author “100 Iconic Bollywood Costumes” and was the Founding Editor In Chief of Harper's Bazaar, India.
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