Saif Ali Khan needs no introduction. His name finds a mention in myriad conversations — whether it is about celebs with powerful acting skills (read: Omkara, Dil Chahta Hai, Ek Hasina Thi) or those known for their impeccable fashion choices. But did you know that Saif also has a knack for designing and helps create outfits for his clothing label, House of Pataudi?
In an email interview with indianexpress.com, the actor, who is all set to become a father once again, talks about life in lockdown, his fashion label and the Pataudis’ sense of styling, and also reveals what keeps the creativity in him alive.
How would you describe your lockdown experience?
Just like for everyone out there, the initial days were a little tough as we all had to adapt to this unexpected stay at home situation. But after a point, I decided to focus and channelise my energy into things that I love and would otherwise never have gotten a chance to do, like reading, learning the guitar, cooking, painting and gardening with my son.
You have utilised the time on hand to create the new collection for your fashion label. How different will the latest collection be?
I have had so many ideas over the years but busy schedules and countless shoots made it hard to find the time to put in the required effort. However, the lockdown presented an opportunity for me to get creative and contribute to House of Pataudi’s latest collection. The idea around the new collection was something that could be worn at home, comfortable and relaxed. The colours, silhouettes and the designs are a breath of fresh air in terms of what the brand has been offering till now.
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One seeks inspiration from the surroundings when creating something new, which is curtailed during the lockdown. However, did it give you ‘me-time and space’, helping the creative juices flow?
I would say yes and no. This lockdown has given all of us the time to pause, think, ponder and try to be as creative in whatever ways and means we can. Creativity to me is all about opening up the mind, experimenting, switching to something completely new and out of the box.
As an artist of various forms, I have come to realise that inspiration doesn’t come to me or anyone else out of thin air. More often than not, we have to find and look out for things that inspire us in order to quench the creative thirst. To me, going back to family archives and photographs was a great start to think of new ideas.
I have used this time to take a trip down memory lane in the hope of finding the inspiration for the new collection. Passing up the chance to reconnect with my roots and relive some good old times was simply not an option.
House of Pataudi as a brand is rooted in Pataudi heritage and everything about the family. In our collections, we always pay tribute to that heritage by showcasing the intricate designs of times gone by, in a contemporary manner.
From where/who do you seek inspiration? Do you also take ideas from Kareena when designing the collections?
The new collection is a product of months of detailed planning and a testament to the great efforts from my team at Exceed and Myntra to seamlessly blend the Pataudi heritage with today’s fashion. The design team and I are constantly exchanging unique ideas and concepts. The energy and enthusiasm they bring to the table keeps me inspired.
How much of your own personal style is reflected in your brand?
A lot of my sartorial taste is reflected in the brand but we also have to maintain a fine balance between what I like and the requirement of our target audience. It is important to have a thorough understanding of the fashion choices of our target audience in order to curate unique designs and styles. Drawing on my personal preferences and proud heritage makes every piece a reflection of Pataudis.
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The brand, at the moment, is all about ethnic wear; is that something you enjoy personally? Do you plan to diversify to Indo-fusion or even Western wear in the future?
The soul of this brand is strongly tied to the rich Pataudi heritage and legacy, which goes back centuries. The Pataudi family’s royal finesse, which is rooted in Indian ethnic wear, is something that has traversed time and history to remain popular even today.
Throughout all our generations, the Pataudis’ sense of styling and dressing has always been very ethnic and traditional and yet, was ahead of its time as it redefined several designs, silhouettes and styles that are extremely relevant now. Ethnic wear is a very natural extension for us as Nawabs and Begums have always worn fine sherwanis, kurtas and shararas.
Our core focus will always be Indian ethnic wear, but yes, if you browse through our collection, we have a few Indo-Western pieces as we keep seasonality in mind and work towards our vision to make Indian wear cool and a part of an everyday wardrobe.
House of Pataudi is available on Myntra
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