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Designer diaries

Fashion designer Wendell Rodricks  speaks about his latest collection, life beyond fashion and why he loves Pune so much. Catch the designer along with his new collection on display at Rudraksh

After creating an impact with his two new collections -- the Moonlight Beach collection and Himalyan Live Natural Collection -- at two fashion weeks this year, renowned fashion designer Wendell Rodricks is all set to give Pune a fabulous display of his creations at multi-designer store Rudraksh.


An outfit from the Himalyan Live Natural Collection

One man army
For a designer, it's the finale that makes or breaks the show while displaying the new collection on the ramp. Speaking about his experience juggling two major shows, Rodricks shared, "As a designer it was a challenge to do both collections. The Himalyan Live Natural Collection was done on my return from Europe over the period of a month. So, we had the time to work on the collection. However, the Moonlight Beach collection took a lot of work as we were in the middle of a tour. It's a wonder we pulled off the collection in a record two weeks time. Working on this collection was a challenge as it came after two hit shows and it actually completed the hat trick."

Rodricks believes that it's not just designing clothes that makes a show worthwhile. "I also plan the music and the overall choreography. It is quite a task to do three shows in a season. But I am glad that they turned out well and were much appreciated," he expressed.

Experiment away
Rodricks will be bringing the Himalyan Live Natural Collection to the city. Subtle, natural and minimal, Rodricks' collections always speak for themselves and the designer is known to keep experimenting with his collection. "Though I have a definite style, I need to experiment with ways of making that style look contemporary yet timeless. You can wear a Wendell Rodricks ten years down the line and it will not look dated," he claims. Rodricks believes his clothes are meant for everyone. He makes no distinction between slim and fat, young and old, tall and short. Plus he has kept the prices reasonable and you can pick his designs in the Rs 2,000 and Rs 7,000 bracket.

Showman vs the designer
"I prefer Wendell Rodricks as a person. It is who I am. The rest is created by the media. I have mixed emotions about being a celebrity designer. I enjoy it when I get excess baggage allowance," he laughs. We recently saw him in a television advertisement and out of curiosity we asked him how it all started. "When the Polo executives approached me to do the wrapper and advertisement, I looked at it as an interesting design exercise. I recommended the flavours and did the ad with passion, not realising where they would take it. But they had bigger plans. We were stunned with the response. Last week, the brand renewed my contract. Naturally everyone is happy,"  he says.

Fashion industry in India
The designer observes that the industry is just over a decade old and it still has to evolve. "In ten years, many Indians have forgotten the days they went to a tailor. Designer fashion has taken the country by storm and Bollywood has played its part as well. Today, if malls and brands sell the quantities of merchandise they do, they should thank the first Fashion Week. It changed everyone's lives in 2000," he states. 

Pune all the way
"I like Pune as a city and I have many friends here. I consider Rasika (owner of Rudraksh) as more of a friend than a business person. She knows how I hunger for roadside Misal and home-cooked Varan Bhath. On another level, the party scene in the city is not fake, unlike Mumbai or Delhi. I love Pune and Puneites," he admits, adding that since Pune is a city of youth and young professionals, their lifestyles demand more clothes. "There is tremendous potential in what the industry labels as secondary metros. With the impact of television, everyone dreams of designer weddings, clubwear, partywear and an overall change in lifestyle based on clothes," he concludes. 

On November 30
At Rudraksh, Varsha 104, Anand Park, Aundh.
Call 25882255

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