HYDERABAD: Inspired by nature, especially the tranquil beauty of gardens is Shilpa Khandelwal’s latest collection this summer, titled ‘Floral Affairs’. Through her collection she seeks to replicate the wondrous energy of buds and blooms, the symmetry and form of a perfect flower and the lushness of vibrant colours.
Ask her what she keeps in mind while she gets on to designing dresses. She answers in one word “Simplicity”. Shilpa whose collection can be seen under the label name ‘Shilpa K’ elaborates, “Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to be taken away.”
Being in the profession since she was 18, it was her creative instinct and desire to see beauty in simplicity that inspired Shilpa towards designing. So what does she like so much about the profession? “I enjoy the process of turning something ordinary into something exquisite and sometimes something exquisite into the attainable. I like to design clothes in such a way to make a woman comfortable in her skin and yet feel completely transformed. ‘Make heads turn but never scream for attention’ is how I define my brand’s design philosophy,” she shares.
At the age of 45, the designer still rejoices the birth of her every single creation. “Like a child awaits a new toy, I wait excitedly to see a finished outfit to arrive from the workshop. It’s extremely thrilling to see my sketches come alive. The joy when I spot a stranger wearing one of my creations is completely unparallel,” she beams.
“Nature often serves as my muse” she says when asked what inspires her designs adding, “It can be colour of dusk or the raindrops on my window. My latest floral collection is inspired by gardens – fresh buds, cherry blossoms, chirping sparrows.”
Having spent close to three decades in the profession, she thinks the attitude of Indian women towards fashion has changed since the time she started sketching her designs in her teens. “Instead of hiding their bodies and preferring the girl-next-door look, women are now proud of their curves, more willing to show them off and take better care of themselves. Women are being more style conscious now.
Collaborating with other artists is something that she is looking forward to in future.
“The eclectic mix of vivid hues are going head-to-head with the palette of pastel shades to dominate the color charts” she says adding, “Shades like hydrangea blues, citrus greens, magnolia whites and lotus pinks are contenders for top place in the must-have list alongside corals, rust and shades of chrome to keep the earthy connections alive.” No color can replace of the might of white according to her.”Fashion freaks might opt for knee length jumpsuits in floral prints, mid calf dresses in chiffon and lace and crop tops, flirty skirts in muls,” she opines.