Mind games with Arjun Khanna

Mar 23, 2013, 09:34 IST | Ruchika Kher

Couturier Arjun Khanna, who has been one of the pioneering contributors to men's fashion in India, is set to bring his avant-garde philosophies to the Mumbai fashion week ramp after a hiatus of four years with a collection, titled Out Of Sight, Out Of Mind

All those who have met Arjun Khanna will agree that the designer, who has been creating unconventional yet classy designs for men and women for two decades now, exudes a charm and elegance, which are an intrinsic quality of his collections as well.

A design from Arjun Khanna's collection
A design from Arjun Khanna’s collection

Khanna calls a spade a spade. We realised this when we asked him about his absence from Mumbai’s biggest fashion spectacle for four years. “For me fashion is an art form, a form of my expression and the ramp is my canvas.

Arjun Khanna
Arjun Khanna

So, if I have nothing to say of serious consequence I don’t want to say it. I’ve reached a stage in my career where I don’t have to say it beyond a point unless its really relevant and I’m excited about it, like an inspiring thing or something to say, that’s when I’ll do it. Nothing inspired me, so I didn’t showcase,” says Khanna, dressed in a crisp white shirt with blue jeans, as he settles into a chat at his earthy Colaba store housed inside a 200-year-old building.

Think different
“A restless soul,” he prefers to call himself, Khanna, had another reason to avoid the ramp call - he feels that there is a monotony that has taken over the fashion scene in India, something he didn’t want to be a part of. “The essence of style, the seriousness of what people have to say or show has completely lost the plot.

Forget about the politics that have taken place in between or the Delhi-Mumbai war, which is very stupid and immature, I find that there is a rat race that takes place, all the time, which is not good,” shares the designer, who is ready with his latest collection, Out Of Sight, Out Of Mind, which will be showcased on March 24.

Khanna, who critically focuses on detailing, tailoring and rich designs reveals that titling his collection, Out Of Sight, Out Of Mind came naturally to him. “Fashion is very fickle, it’s very seasonal; so when you are out of sight, you are out of mind. That applies to everything, not just fashion. It tickles me and I like to take advantage of this fact. I come back when I want to and I leave when I wish,” he elaborates.

Cycle the world
The designer also maintained that the title applies to several elements of his collection as well since there will be countless silhouettes and looks that people have forgotten about. The concept of the show is that of a world traveller, with a focus on cycle style. It will bring forth styles followed by people who cycle in different parts of the world including Paris, New York, Amsterdam and Bangkok.

For those who are looking forward to Khanna’s trademark vintage touch, there’s good news. “When you see the presentation, you’ll see a story like a storybook. I wanted this show to be an extension of style and beyond. A lot of looks have elements in them, which belong to the 1940s-1950s era,” sums up the designer. 

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