October 16, 2023 FDCI

Revisiting Memories

15 years and making a mark with classics from the stable, Pankaj and Nidhi combine their strengths from dori work to quilting, creating affable tuxedo jackets and trumpet skirts.

By Asmita Aggarwal

It is their 15 th year in fashion, thus the moniker ‘XV’, also the title of their collection this season, but for the husband-wife team of Pankaj and Nidhi, it is a celebration of the man hours invested with their team they built ground up to achieve this feat. You can call them the ‘back benchers of fashion’, if such a name is appropriate, they sought a more non-aggressive approach towards conquering a market share.

  

For LFW 2023 they are presenting best sellers, in a newer format with an antique and heritage twist, as they believe fast fashion needs to slow down. For a decade-and-a-half they have reimagined applique, dori ka kaam, quilting, and this time pieces are a combination of these techniques. “Cutwork is added to the mix to elevate the ensembles,” says Pankaj.

The evolution of technique can be seen and even though buyers in India prefer uniqueness over glitz and glam, price then becomes irrelevant. References from their past shows also exposed them to the Matador collection, one of their favourite shows just like the black-ivory line, even though they now veer towards many hues.

  

The most interesting part is that Pankaj has sketched most of the collection himself and has worked with digital printing to express his ideas in wool, silk, and taffeta. Relan recycled plastic bottles fibres, to waste segregation and working with Goonj has been their mainstay, but what is in the offing is an eclectic line for home furnishings, an extension of their brand’s personality with textures and patterns. “We started doing tote bags as a giveaway, and customers would enquire where we could buy them. This is when the idea of diversification into ‘maybe accessories’ happened,” adds Pankaj.

2023 LFW is about simple shapes, tuxedo jackets, trumpet, and A-line skirts, plus a new silhouette which is a hybrid—a dhoti style cross over with pants. “We also have a small bridal line, not for the main day but the functions leading up to it—cocktails to mehendi, after all no one can compete with the masters of the game,” he concludes.

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