FDCI X LFW’s GenNext winners, Twinkle Hanspal and Deepit Chugh, talk about their journey and what to expect
Take a sneak peek into their latest collections
THE FASHION DESIGN Council of India and Lakme Fashion Week coming together to host a joint fashion week earlier this year was an important moment in India’s fashion history. Now, they are set to stage the Winter/Festive showcase and as per usual, announced the winners of ‘GenNext’ — their talent discovery program. The 32nd batch, comprising just two designers — Twinkle Hanspal and Deepit Chugh — was shortlisted by a panel including names like Tarun Tahiliani, former fashion editor, Priya Tanna, and Head of RISE Fashion and Lifestyle, Jaspreet Chandok. We caught up with the two designers to find out more about their labels, design philosophy and aesthetic.
Tell us a little bit about your background.
I have always had a keen visual eye and curiosity for design. I graduated from NIFT, New Delhi in 2015 and then worked with veteran designers like Ritu Kumar and Anamika Khanna. Transforming my talent into craft, I embarked on a career in design with my range of ‘elevated essentials.’ The garments are an extension of my own wardrobe which was built on my thirst for finding wearable statement pieces.
What is the design philosophy of your brand?
It boasts a minimal-yet-statement aesthetic tied together with elevated essentials derived from Indian classics. Wearability and versatility are at the core of the brand. They are redefined to fit the sartorial needs of a modern, independent woman.
In an industry that is extremely competitive, how will your label stand out?
Inclusivity is a fairly new concept in its entirety in fashion but our approach towards it has always been impartial. Our clothing is made for one and all without compromising on our design language. This is what sets us apart.
What is your take on sustainable fashion?
The brand is not trend-driven, hence we’re promoting sustainability by creating timeless pieces that will last you a lifetime.
Tell us a little bit about your latest collection.
The roots of the collection I am presenting at the joint FDCI X Lakmé Fashion Week lie in celebrating classic Indian silhouettes with a contemporary twist. Luxurious silks and breathable cottons together weave a timeless story. Statement inserts with dabka, fabric-cording and linestitch form a beautiful amalgamation of precision and craftsmanship. The idea was to showcase a very accessible approach to fashion through wearable statementessentials.
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am a bit of drifter – born in Ahmedabad, did my schooling from Mumbai, Bengaluru and Kolkata and finally graduated in 2011 from NIFT, New Delhi. Following my graduation, I had the opportunity to work with the likes of Triburg (a buying agency), Raymonds and Aditya Birla group. My first memory of designer clothing was when I was 10 years old and my cousin (Yukta Mookhey) was crowned Miss World 1999. I guess seeing the beautiful blue gown designed by Hemant Trivedi was something that stayed with me.
Tell us about the aesthetic of your brand.
Line Outline, my label, is a range of ready-to-wear clothing with a fluid narrative that blends clean tailored looks with sporty minimalism. The brand works closely with local craftsmen and tailors, and explores the lines between form and function driven by an experimental yet wearable approach. The aesthetic is carefully created using a range of interesting fabrics and construction techniques.
What is your approach to sustainable fashion?
Sustainable fashion as the world sees it is mostly to do with fabrics and materials. I, on the other hand, feel that sustainability should also include business practices. During the first lockdown, we realised a large number of local tailors and craftsmen were completely out of work and had to shut down their businesses. This gave me the idea to work with these tailors in order to maintain a healthy number of orders and I also trained them to improve the quality of their finishing. This was helpful as they did not have to shut shop completely. This to me is one way of being sustainable. In addition, we have also introduced recycled cotton hang tags, and labels made from recycled plastic bottles.
What can one expect from your latest collection?
The collection is called Chapter 2 - Idyll. The brand takes its visual inspiration from coloured brutalist architecture for this collection which uses soft cottons, cotton blends, Bemberg silks and twill fabrics. It has minimalistic hand embroidery like cording, pitta work and zardosi which help elevate the products. There is also a focus on colour blocking and pattern play.
What are the most unique pieces from the collection?
I think the printed black Bemberg silk shirt set is one of my most favourite looks of the season. The fabric is very fluid and feels really nice to touch. The abstract print also adds a fun street vibe to it. The minimalistic panelled bandhgalas are an interesting update to modern Indian attire. The cuts are classic, with cut and sew detailing. The embroidered blazer in navy is also a must have. It is a double-breasted style without lapels and features a modern take on zardosi embroidery and cording.