Divorce-lawyer-turned designer, Aditi Mohoni crafts a story with each piece of khadi that she manipulates
By Asmita Aggarwal
It was quite a 180 degree turn, from a celeb divorce lawyer to a designer and this didn’t happen overnight! It took two days. No pun intended. After St Xavier’s College, Mumbai, Aditi, decided to study law and she found it “really boring”, with the only interesting part being family law.
As a student, she loved psychology, so understanding how the human mind works was fascinating for her, which prompted Aditi to take up family law, where she heard two sides of the same story. “Working with senior advocate Mridula Kadam was really enlightening because she lets you grow and fight cases on your own and make mistakes. She encouraged me to do what my heart desired,” she laughs.
And her heart was in clothes, so she launched Aureole, some months ago, her brand that deals in pure khadi and textile-based ensembles. “It was quite funny because I had clients calling when I was going or was in a hearing. So when the Mumbai High Court, last year, was on a short summer break, I decided to hire a self drive car, got my parents along and took a road trip to Gujarat, staying at random places,” she admits.
Being the birthplace of khadi, Gujarat seemed like the right place to start and Aditi travelled from Ahmedabad, Patan, Kutch, Ajrakpur, Bhuj to Saurashtra.
After returning from her whirlwind tour, Aditi, did an exhibition at the Vintage Garden, Mumbai, where she got sold out and also proverbially met Praneeta Diwanji from Concern India, who encouraged her to take this up seriously, and two days later and after five years of practising law, she quit her job and immersed herself in just Aureole.
The name signifying purity, positive energy, and white light, “being a lawyer I was obsessed with white” so it had to be part of the line. Coming from an academic family, Aditi’s mother is the vice-principal of St Xavier’s College and father works with the Mahindra Group, there was never any pressure to make money or chase fame, the rule was simple—be happy. That’s what the tagline for Aureole is, “beautiful clothes you can live in”.
For AIFW SS’18, Aditi’s rendition is minimal, narrating the story of a girl, who is vacationing and is content with life. So there is a play of stripes, layering, gathers and fuss free clothing, with khadi and cotton sourced from Gujarat and West Bengal. “The cool thing is that all our clothes come with pockets where you can put your money and phone, so you don’t need to take a bag along,” she adds.
Aditi credits many people, who have contributed to her journey, Reva, her photographer being foremost, closely followed by Elizabeth Kirby of the blog Local Milk. “Kirby is all about slowing down and living life to the fullest, two lessons I must learn and practise,” she adds. With Kunal as her partner, who manages the commercial aspects, Aditi is free to design and create. At 29, she made a career switch and hopes that the clothes she designs are an extension of her personality. “If I wasn’t a designer, or lawyer I would be a chef running a concept store, with clothes and a cafe,” she grins.