Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Styling the Hyderabadi lass...

One of the stylists from the city with international repute, Anand Kabra's creations are all about cut, color and quality. The designer chews the fat with Hyderabad Journal.

'Seeing beauty even in the dreary...' reads the website of Hyderabadi fashion designer Anand Kabra. An artiste of rare perception, Anand's collections of Indian ethos in international appeal, have philosophy weaved into every creation; distinct and unpredictable, too.

Born in UK, Anand moved to Hyderabad at the age of three. A product of Hyderabad Public School, this runaway medical student was more inclined towards arts since childhood. "I felt like someone guiding me to take up fashion. Still groping for a reason," he wonders.

Having pursued high national diploma from London College of Fashion, Anand's maiden collection was put on display at Hotel Grand Kakatiya in 1999. Ten years into styling only women's clothing, Anand looks forward to styling men only after some research. "No half-hearted attempts, please! In fact, I pick one for me just like that," he reasons.

Rather 'erratic' his working style is, Anand says, "It begins with a thought followed by understanding the period, character or book my collection is inspired from, for a three-four months. I put my best consistently only to realize at the end that I'd have done better!"

A staunch believer in 'no form and definite design', Anand prefers working with natural fibers. He loves playing with solid, pure colors rather pastels because of their 'intensity'. Popular for his trousseau collections, the designer is greedy for accolades and criticism, too. "A lot of fashionistas said they 'feel' it having 'slipped into a Kabra'. But I'm more concerned about critics."
With a wider clientele in Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai than that in Hyderabad, Anand is proud representing the City of Nawabs on global platform. "The preferences and awareness of Hyderabadi fashion buyers is amazing. Hailing from a smaller cosmopolitan though, they stand out amongst the crowds, all for good reasons. Moreover, the culture of costumes, still a part of our daily lives, throws open the doors for me to imbibe the old-world charm into contemporary wear."

Not into the number game, Anand cares for learning from his counterparts. After the shows in New York, Paris and Shanghai, he realized that the world is watching India emerge as a fashion hub. "Fashion weeks are more about business than glamour. In India, not all but Lakme (Mumbai) and Wills (Delhi) have the substance. And, I'm trying to tap the Hyderabad markets," he sounds pragmatic.

Now working on the collection to be launched at the Lakme Fashion Week (Mumbai) in September, Anand chose to create his own market powered by a price point. "I can't work within a budget and never understand the mass market," he reveals his shortcoming.

"Ninety per cent of upcoming designers think that chasing lifestyles or rubbing shoulders with biggies would help make it. But, knowing well the craft and showing right aptitude do miracles," he suggests on a departing note.

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