She is not afraid to speak her mind, and is one designer who finds an instant connect with the youth. Masaba Gupta is a firecracker in the true sense, and the usherer of kitsch pop fashion in India.
Before she began her journey in 2009 with Lakmé Fashion Week’s Gen Next show, you would hardly see designers, other than Manish Arora, blend pop colours and quirky prints. Masaba was quick to foray into this uncharted territory, and today, not only has she made a name for herself for the wild use of colours in her designs, but has also dived into the world of festive and occasion wear. Her latest collection is an ode to the new-age bride.
We caught up with the designer to talk about her Winter/Festive 2018 collection, what inspires her and why social media is a big part of her life.
Your winter/festive collection is an ode to the new-age bride and in your own words, “the opposite of opulence”. What is different about this collection?
I feel the younger generation is more thoughtful about the cost and about smaller, more intimate things. We at House of Masaba painted a canvas for those girls who want their weddings to be in a lesser opulent setting, maybe in a marriage registry office or in their grandmother’s backyard. The garments are sophisticated, urbane, full of edge and attitude. They are coveted for all brides-to-be from multiple ethnicity, different body types, and different mannerisms. It is more of a Destination Bridal collection as the garments are elegant and fuss-free.
What kind of fabrics and craftsmanship dominate this collection? Would you please like to elaborate?
The fabrics I use are light-weight and easy-going. For my new collection, I picked up organza, chanderi, habutai silk and Banarasi weaves. The repertoire is dominated by foil prints like banana tree, pineapple, turtle, corn stamp, dry flower, corn flower grids. The collection is infused with quirky foil, printed, organza, silk and applique paired with delicately hand-embroidered resham (silk) thread, pearls, sequins, beads, zardosi and dabka (very fine metal thread) work making them heirloom pieces which will be cherished by generations to come. They are full of edge and fuss-free.
You are known to incorporate bright colours in your collections. Is there a specific reason for doing that?
I believe that a vibrant colour palette gives a stylish update to an ethnic wardrobe. Bright colours like bright pink, yellow, teal, electric blue may be a bit much for a regular day. Well, the bright colors stand out and leave a positive energy around the festive season.
What about pastels? We think the pastel outfit that Sonam Kapoor wore to Cannes 2017 is beautiful. Do you plan to work with more pastels?
Absolutely, in fact I think pastels are the front runners in the market. Shades like pink, peach, yellow, orange, red and mustard are really popular in India and are still dominating the industry. Also, pastels blend well with Indian skin tones and are easy to carry. Few of these shades are absolutely soothing.
Designers have their own source of inspiration. Where do you get yours from?
Everything around inspires me. The people I meet, the books I read, the shows I watch, the music I hear. Also, I am a keen observer, I observe young girls – where they go, what they eat, what they look up to for fashion. My creativity is inherent, thanks to my mother, who always had a great sense of fashion. I feel so blessed to be surrounded by such strong personalities as my mother who pushes me to become better and never lets me get complacent even for a moment.
On a completely different note, you are known to express your opinion on social media often. Have you always been this outspoken? What advice would you give to women who don’t find the courage to speak up?
Social media has become a big part of my life. And it’s all about sharing, which I like. I like to share my opinions and thoughts with people out there. Also, it’s a great way to know what your audience likes and accepts. Social media is a free-flowing communication channel, voice out your opinions and I’m sure someone will listen. But, if you can’t talk in front of the world, then I think you should at least talk to someone in person.
Which designers do you look up to?
If you had the chance to dress up someone in your latest collection, who would it be?
Aishwarya Rai Bachchan.
Other than Sonam Kapoor, which Bollywood celeb do you think has a great sense of style?