Puducherry-based label Wunderhaus’ latest collection Trees & Moonsigns is an ode to all things Indian
If you thought that planting trees and preserving forests were only methods to stave off the escalating climate crisis, Kedar Maddula asks you to reconsider your stance. The founder and designer of the Puducherry brand Wunderhaus believes that nurturing plants could give you the lucky break that you are looking for! “According to the Vedas, plants and trees give you the opportunity to get rid of bad energies and doshas. As per astrology, each moon sign has a corresponding plant that governs your luck. And if nothing else, it is a great reminder of the global warming crisis and the need to preserve green cover,” offers the Puducherry-based entrepreneur, talking about his latest collection, Trees & Moonsigns.
What we love
The additional bits of contrasting hand embroidery that transform the leaf motifs into patterns of little birds and fishes.
The offer to customise the leaf print of your choice on your pick of apparel.
A collaborative effort between architect-turned-artist M Kalaivani — known for her cyanotype printing — of the brand 56th Day and Wunderhaus, the line brings together two distinct design aesthetics almost seamlessly. Characterised by its use of pressed leaf motifs and its corresponding lunar sign against a distinct hue of blue (a result of the analogue photograph printing technique), the collection’s basic colour palette of ecru and madder work to highlight the patterns in play. “The leaves that have been used belong to local trees like neem, jackfruit, mango and peepal, all of them handpicked by either Kalaivani or me,” reveals the NIFT graduate, who moved to Auroville in 2011 and started an artist residency after winding up the operations of his prêt label in Hyderabad.
Having relaunched his brand in 2020 in Auroville, albeit in a more sustainable avatar, following a gap of eight years, Trees & Moonsigns is the designer’s attempt to create an eco-friendly label that is equal parts Indian as it is chic. “The design community is seeing a great revival of indigenous weaves and it was something that I wanted to work on,” explains Kedar, who spent close to a year on research and sourcing of his fabrics. As a part of his groundwork, the 42-year-old tells us that he came to realise that khadi and cotton fabrics were often associated with the imagery of something that was crude or unrefined. “My focus, now, as a designer is to alter that perception and make ‘wearing Indian’ cool.”
The dual-toned Kalai shirt with an asymmetric hemline that can be worn either as a tie-up top or a kurta.
One for all
With its core design philosophy strongly rooted in Indian heritage and ideology, all fabrics used by the brand are made using locally-produced short-staple cotton woven by clusters in Madurai and Kurinjipadi. However, as part of its millennial appeal, Kedar’s label does tap into the ongoing global fashion trend of genderless silhouettes. Look out for relaxed and comfortable wardrobe staples like shirts, kurtas, bomber jackets and pants that can be dressed up or down and styled as per requirement.