Label Reynu Taandon + Nikhita
Brides have become more contemporary & experimental
Renowned womenswear designer Reynu Taandon has been serving the fashion industry for more than two decades. In an interview with ,Kiran Sahija she shares her views on sticking to her niche of hand-crafted designs keeping her collections classic yet fashionable.
Fibre2Fashion: How has been your fashion journey so far? Was opening a designer label your childhood dream?
The journey was long. Starting off from the year 1981 with my husband’s renowned export house where my passion transformed into profession, from supplying to big brands to designing for labels--the journey was interesting with much of hustle. To be honest, it was not my childhood dream to become a designer, but fashion was my passion. It was never about wearing it or buying it but much more of perspective, where I could not imagine anything beyond fashion and that makes me feel alive.
Fibre2Fashion: How is the demand of your collection in the international market as compared to the domestic market? Are you able to reach out to your targeted audience?
In this tech friendly world either be it digital runway show or online website, the reach of audience is fabulous. So my outreach is global. All you need to have is a pre-planned marking strategy.
Fibre2Fashion: How do you manage to cultivate your thoughts and imagination for your designs and what was the story behind your latest collection Zuri?
Usually, it comes from travelling but at the time of the pandemic, I got close to nature and spent quality time at my farmhouse realising every petty thing nature has to offer. For incidence watching peacock dancing at the time of my morning walk and chirping birds, sunshine flowing inside my drawing room, imagining some beautiful flowers in my daughter's hand and such familiar dreamy acts ended up being great inspiration for Zuri.
Fibre2Fashion: How has been your experience while collaborating with B’town celebrities?
To be honest it is nothing new to me as I have done round about 40 shows and each show has a celebrity showstopper. But for my latest shoot, just a couple of days before the shoot we planned to have Chitrangada Singh on board as she was in town and we have already worked with her before. So the shoot ended up successfully as everything went according to plan.
Fibre2Fashion: Can you brief me about the design process that goes behind every hand embroidered piece?
Honestly, each outfit is hand embroidered and it takes couple of months at the stage of designing adding further roundabout of 20 days until a single lehenga goes into production. So briefly it takes about three months. But no single piece goes into machine, each detailing is hand-crafted by skilled craftsmen.
Fibre2Fashion: How was the functioning of the label affected during the pandemic in terms of team co-operation?
It got difficult especially in current times as second lockdown and Eid collided. It also affected working hours as the team had to work overtime as everything in my collection is usually hand-crafted. So it is quite time consuming. Luckily, we had an advantage to have 30/40 people in the factory outlet as per government guidelines. So my core team has co-operated a lot.
Fibre2Fashion: What attracts you the most about western fashion?
I admire western fashion a lot as the silhouette and stiches are very fabulously done but when Indian embroideries are added to it, they look perfect.
Fibre2Fashion: Do trends affect your collection, or do you have your own signature style?
Trends never affect my silhouette. I always prefer to keep it classic unless a client wants customisation or wants to style it in a unique way. My design is too versatile and can be styled in numerous ways, but I never shift my niche.
Fibre2Fashion: Where do you struggle the most when it comes to silhouette as your collection has a variety of options for every occasion?
No, not really. It depends on person to person or consumer demand--either they want it to be covered or any particular style. So, the designs and silhouettes are open to customisation and are according to demand of the client.
Fibre2Fashion: Lately social media has become a level playing field for the fashion industry, how has this helped your label to grow?
Social media has been a great support to reach out to the audience from any corner of the world. So I passionately believe that being global has become easier in today's world. Meanwhile the fashion committee of India has been a great medium for a shoutout.
Fibre2Fashion: You have been in the fashion industry for a long time. What are the changes you have seen in the Indian bridal fashion so far?
I am serving in the fashion industry for the past 22 years; it has been a beautiful journey. Talking about the changes I have noticed--girls have become more contemporary and they are open to experimenting with colours and silhouettes as these days parents and in-laws are seen to be flexible with their children’s choices.
Fibre2Fashion: What are the five festive season essentials every woman must have?
One must have Diwali special dhoti suit, a velvet stole which is one of the best and elegant cover up, a Kadwachauth outfit, off-white classic lehenga and a classic jewelry to embellish any basic outfit.
Fibre2Fashion: Are you planning to put your hands into a menswear collection?
No plans for menswear as I firmly believe to stick to my niche but when it comes to designing for a bride, we do design it for groom too. But nothing particularly dedicated to menswear. Sometimes to be unique one must learn to say NO.