I was fascinated by fashion industry at a very early age, I was in 10th class at that time. That was when K3G had released and Manish Malhotra’s costume made quite a buzz in the fashion industry. I was quite impressed with the Bollywood style costume. And that was the humble beginning of a dream. I had mentioned about my desire to study fashion designing to a friend. It was only after the intermediate examination, a friend of mine told me about this fashion designing colleges in Kerala. My mother was very particular that I don’t travel anywhere outside Kerala and that’s how I completed my graduation in fashion designing.At the end of the third year, I was placed with ‘Fabindia’, and that’s where I fell in love with fabric and block prints. Even when I was in college I would go shop trims and laces from the market behind my college, irrespective of that fact that whether I bring it to use or not. Apart from the design and fabric, it helped me in gaining perspective about the textile industry. During my stint at Fabindia, I got married, had a baby, took a break and later joined a company called Evolv.
And then I gradually moved to an e-commerce company, where I met my co-founder with the similar set of interest.
Fabindia never tried to establish itself as a fashion brand; the founder of Fabindia, Mr. Bissell fell in love with the Indian fabric. In fact, he started with Durie’s and later moved onto fabrics. Fabindia has a huge variety of designs and handmade clothes; it has started its own genre of style by preserving the local craftsmanship and presenting khaadi to the world with a local craft and modern design. With our new label, we aim to promote the artists and their skills, making sure that it lives longer for generations to come. Apart from this, we also aim at reducing wastage by recycling/upcycling the dead stock , we aim at creating capsule collections, by transforming the style pattern for example, the normal looking Kanchipuram saree can be converted into a skirt or a coat, hence converting the regular fabric into western contemporary designs.
With the help of middle men, we plan to create a sustainable environment for example there are certain places we do not have an access to or the place we cannot reach if the middleman there helps us in getting the work done or connect us to the artisans. The middlemen could be someone like AIAA who has the directory of all the artisans from across the country and is a certification body themselves.
The reason Bangladesh is doing well is due to cheap labor and low manufacturing costs. We are using the handmade fabrics and aiming at a sustainable environment and do not plan on contributing to export for now. But we can overcome this problem by promoting make in India.
Down the line, yes, but as a brand. But before that, we plan to reach out to celebrities and celebrity stylists to slow down fashion, make them aware of the impact of fast fashion and help them influence the mass, because we believe it’s the influencer who plays a major role in creating an impact.
There is a revolution in the fashion industry to bring down the pace, as fashion was never supposed to be fast, it has a 6 months’ periodical concept. But unfortunately, a major percentage of people are unaware of it. It is not the brand that creates an impact. It’s the influencer who play a major role in creating such an impact. Our idea is to target these influencers and bring down the consumption.
We are considering both the options as we are targeting middle east as well. We also plan to tie up with cafés and other brands. We are trying to keep it as mobile as possible.
“There is a revolution in the fashion industry to bring down the pace as fashion was never supposed to be fast, it has a 6 months’ periodical concept.”
— Thasneem Masood, Rossbelle.
Editor : Sreeja Raveendran
Photography – Vasanth Saravanan.