“I guess people will realise less is more. They will learn to recycle and upcycle,” the Glasgow-based designer added.
His Instagram bio describes him as a ‘storyteller’ and rightly so, as designer Ayush Kejriwal’s creations always narrate a strong tale. The Glasgow-based designer, known for his unconventional take on fashion and beauty, is well-known for his ethnic creations that he often uses to make a statement and empower people.
In an exclusive email interaction with indianexpress.com, the designer talks about his latest collaboration with Label Varsha, the significance of his brand’s new logo launched earlier this year, the effect of the pandemic on the fashion industry and much more.
What is your latest collection in collaboration with Label Varsha all about?
My collaboration with Label Varsha for Spring Summer’21 collection emphasises a mystical feel, rawness, and ethnicity. The collection draws inspiration from the traditional Kalamkari block prints of South India. It is Indian, organic, and all about austere simplicity with clean lines.
What is the USP of this collection and how is it different from your previous creations?
It is a beautiful collection with an opulent touch. The collection is a perfect amalgamation of affordability and luxury.
The pandemic has hugely affected the fashion industry. But what do you feel has been the biggest impact and why?
I feel people are now more inclined towards buying less and interested in quality products. I think this pandemic might just help in making slow fashion a reality.
You recently launched a new logo for your label. Could you share the idea, inspiration, and design details of the same?
My brand logo tells my story through the most potent symbols – it is all about ‘Mai’ (me). Number 27 has a special significance. When I started my creative journey in 2013, I lived at 27 Huntly Gardens in Glasgow. Number 27 symbolises where it all began. Glasgow may be my adopted home; however, Kolkata is the place where my character was formed, and my heart remains in the city. Kolkata is a city of many symbols but, to me, the hand-pulled rickshaw symbolises true grit and determination. The iconic image of two hands touching is incorporated into my logo as a representation of the creativity involved in the design and production of my pieces. The flower motif represents universal beauty which reinforces the message that everyone is beautiful.
For the last 1.5 years, sustainability has been a buzzword in the fashion industry. What is your take on sustainable fashion?
For me, it’s something that is a part of my business. It is not a new fad or a gimmick. I produce good quality products that can be used for a long time. They are produced in a way that is fair to the environment and the people who make them.
You launched your brand seven years back and are well-known for ethnic creations. But not many Bollywood celebrities are seen wearing your creations. Has it been a conscious decision to stay away from the limelight and the industry, in general?
No, it certainly hasn’t been a conscious decision. To be honest, I’m more heedful towards my clients and people who appreciate my creativity. It doesn’t matter if that person belongs to the Bollywood industry or some other industry, I am happy as long as people appreciate my work.
How would you describe your design aesthetics?
Bold, timeless, eccentric and imperfectly perfect.
What has kept you interested in ethnic wear all these years?
Saris are the biggest canvas in the world, and I use them to tell my stories.
You often make a statement with your collections. How important is fashion when it comes to ushering change — personal as well as societal?
Clothes make us feel things. They help us portray a message, and can empower people if used effectively. They can tell stories, influence people and help create emotional connections.
How have you been coping with the pandemic, and since fashion is all about adapting to changes, do you see any trends/fads being born out of the pandemic?
I guess people will realise less is more. They will learn to recycle and upcycle.