Spotlight on ethnic motifs
Tell us about the collection you showcased at LFW.
Transience is inspired by Wabi-Sabi, a Japanese rubric of rustic simplicity, impermanence and natural imperfection. Hand woven, hand spun khadi and hand block printed ajrakh are the soul of the collection that gives it a beautiful imperfection and an earthy flavour. Indigene’s motif inspiration for the collection is influenced by the Gurunsi architecture and the elaborately decorated walls of Burkina Faso in Africa, maintaining the geometric characteristic of traditional ajrakh and its multiple printing processes, yet giving the fabric a global interpretation and a fresh perspective.
The embroidered and handmade trim details add to Indigene’s signature style in a subtle manner. The silhouettes are simple and unpretentious; the look is never flamboyant, but is stylish, classic and wearable.
How did you guys come together?
Both of us were classmates at the National Institute of Fashion Technology, New Delhi in the textile design department. We inculcated similar interests for handmade and natural design processes at the institute. We also went ahead to work with grassroot craft sector organisations on full time as well as consultancy engagements since 2004.
Later in 2010, we started to think about our own design company, which would be an extension of our experiences in the craft sector and came up with the idea of Indigene.
What is the USP of your label?
Indigene started with a passion for all things handmade. We strive to keep intact the real meaning of ‘handmade by artisans’ and ‘ethically crafted’. Each product goes through several hands and geographies. There is a commitment to the artisans we work with and have been continuing this relationship for the past four years. Instead of looking for a new craft for every new collection that we make, our endeavour is to develop a new look with the same techniques and artisans, which is rather challenging.
What is fashion for you?
Anything that you wear which makes you feel comfortable and confident. Comfort and confidence together make you look stylish and fashionable.
What inspires you?
As the backbone of our products is hand craft, we get inspired by the many techniques, looks and motifs which are hand crafted across the globe. It could come from wall art, traditional textiles, architecture or even body art. We believe that design sensibilities in the ancient cultures and people were much more refined and balanced, and we as designers have much to get inspired by them.