Here comes the Gen-Y!

Poonam Sanghani and Rohit Dubey were studying at the National Institute of Fashion Technology, Ahmedabad when they launched their signature collection -- Siyaahi -- last year.

Archana Rao
Archana Rao

Dubey (23) was pursuing a course in Fashion design when he met Sanghani who was a student of textile design department. Says Dubey, “We both realised that we love fashion. Besides, it's great because she finalises the texture, fabric and the sketch and I take care of the design.”

Mirages of Sand, their debut collection, is inspired by the Pharaohs of Egypt. The collection will comprise soft, flowy silhouettes in chiffon, silk, georgette and Stanton. Dubey elaborates, “Since it is for the summer/resort collection, we will have lots of flowy gowns, flared dresses, cowl neck t-shirts and pants in mostly off white and nudes.”

But launching their debut collection was not easy. The biggest problem were funds. Says Dubey, “We didn’t have enough funds but we somehow managed through our past savings.”

A glimpse of Archana Rao’s ¬†debut collection, A Nostalgia Shop that features designs inspired by furniture, architecture and paintings

It was mere curiosity that led Sanghani to post some pictures of their collection to the organisers of the Lakme Fashion Week. Sanghani says, “We just sent the pictures for the heck of it. We did not expect them to revert.”

Poonam Sanghani and Rohit Dubey
Poonam Sanghani and Rohit Dubey

So how do they feel about their debut show? “We still can’t believe it. Rohit has to pinch me to make me believe that we are going to go there. It is unreal.”

For 27-year-old Archana Rao, the road was less bumpy. This Hyderabad-based designer has been turning heads with collection named Frou Frou that is known for its minimalistic patterns, tailored designs and accessories. “I was just happy to be in the right place at the right time,” she tells us over the phone. Her collection has retailed in e-fashion site Pret-amoda and erstwhile kitsch store, the Attic in Bandra.

Rao also studied at NIFT, and later pursued fashion fesign at Parsons School of Design, New York. “I think a formal training in fashion is necessary just to get your basics right,” she explains.

The cuts and the designs of Rohit Dubey and Poonam Sanghani’s collection -- Mirages of Sand have been inspired by Egypt

Last year, she was short-listed for the Gen-Next show at the LFW in 2012. She explains, “The show was my stepping stone towards the fashion industry. I met so many fashion designers through this show. It was because of this, that people took notice of my designs.”

Her debut show -- A Nostalgia Shop will have a depiction of vintage collection from all over the world which are inspired by furniture, paintings and photographs.

This is unlike her past works of minimalistic designs and clean cuts. She explains, “Since this is my debut show as a designer, I wanted to come out of my comfort zone and add more texture to my designs. The collection will have colours such as nude, khakhis, rose pinks but don’t expect outrageous neon colour in my clothes,” she laughs.

Ask her about future plans and she is quick to reply, “I want to launch my standalone boutique in metros. But before this, it’s showtime!”¬†

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