'Handicraft is pure art'

'Handicraft is pure art'

Every bride wants to look perfect on her wedding day and allure everyone, especially the bridegroom, with her traditional attire. Turning this dream of a bride into reality is young fashion designer Divya Reddy, who will soon showcase her bridal collection ‘Allure’ in the upcoming Lakme Fashion Week. A blend of soft, feminine, sensual and romantic outfits, her designs suit the contemporary bride who loves a splash of colour on her bridal wear.

The Hyderabad-based designer has used pearls in her collection to “portray the royalty of Hyderabad”. Mysteriously attractive, her collection speaks of love and has intricate designs juxtaposed with handlooms in modern cuts. It has exquisite needlework with stunning silhouettes that reflect elegance.

Says Divya, “My collection does not consist of typical bridal wear, which is usually in shades of red and maroon. Keeping the tradition intact, I have played with a lot of pastel colours. I have used the colour yellow generously as it signifies ‘haldi’. Peach is also one of the main colours I have used as it suits anyone and everyone and there is a sense of ethnicity to it.”

She adds that she is inspired by everything around her. “It is a little tough to come up with innovations in bridal wear as it mostly consists of ‘cholis’ and saris. My collection has a lot of embroidery work. I have also incorporated European style silhouettes, even though the outcome is very Indian.”

A graduate from New York Fashion Institute, she interned with Dior for a short period and says, “I started my label four years back and it has been just a year-and-a-half since I began exhibiting my work in different cities.” Ask her what interested her to this creative field and she explains, “My mother closely works with many craft councils and weavers. She was one of the reasons why I chose the field. Now, 80-85 per cent of the fabrics I use in my designs are all handloom.”

Not a big fan of block printing, she admires the hard and tedious work of craftsmen who fuse handicrafts like ‘ikat’ with  ‘garhwal’ art. She says, “Handicraft is pure art to me and the works of these artists are innovative and intricate.”

As someone who feels that fashion has to be affordable, she says, “The best of clothes should be affordable. Not all expensive clothes are fashionable. Quality does not come cheap but that doesn’t mean that overpriced products have quality. My clients never complain about the prices as the cost is reflected in my work.”

Taking part in Lakme Fashion Week for the first time, she says “acceptance” is what she is looking for. With affordability being her USP, she says, “Style is not what you buy with a million bucks; it is what that makes you look like a million bucks.”

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