New pret label Urban Dhara is geared towards daily wear
LAST month, the city saw the launch of a new label, an offshoot of what can only be described as sort of an institution in South Bengaluru. Urban Dhara, a line of contemporary Indian clothing, is by the same mother-daughter duo behind Shyna Design Studio, Shylaja and Sangeeta Ananth. With over 40,000 likes on Facebook, the studio was born 28 years ago, and specialises in blouses and Indian bridal wear. Urban Dhara however, lays emphasis on minimalism and is geared towards women who’d like to make a statement without being over the top.
“Shyna patrons loved what my mother and I wore as work clothes, which were quite obviously designed by us and tailored at our studio. They loved the fact that what we wore was exclusive, not mass produced and most importantly, suited their aesthetics. Due to constant and repeated requests from friends and patrons, the new line of contemporary wear, Urban Dhara was born,” explains Sangeeta, the daughter, who has a background in advertising.
While minimalism is key, their design philosophy also celebrates Indian fabrics. Think khadi, vegetable-dyed and hand-block printed textiles. The label takes inspiration from the tailorbird. “The bird represents patience and tenacity, a philosophy that we have imbibed. They take intricate workmanship to the next level and they get their name from the way their nests are woven. The edges of a large leaf are pierced and sewn with plant fibre or spider silk. This forms a cradle in which the actual nest is created. Now, that’s design by nature – and this extends into our design ideology,” explains Sangeeta.
Their debut collection seeks to bring back the retro look with checks, trumpet sleeves and polka dots on layered dresses and asymmetrical hemlines. “One particular top that is a highlight is a simple kora cotton number with bright ikat trimmings, hand-embroidered panels and block-printed motifs. This one piece brings together three Indian artisanal elements,” reveals Sangeeta, and adds that their first line of 2018, the Spring Summer collection will be launched at Raintree on Feb-ruary 27. “The new collection will include colours of the season, sharp and structured cuts with a coordinated line of smart casuals for toddlers and teens under the label Urban Dhara Junior,” she concludes.