Kaaisha by Shalini’s latest edit Mehfil celebrates intimate gatherings during the pandemic
Since she was 12, Shalini Gupta wanted to have her own fashion label. However, for the next 28 years, life had other beautiful plans for her and that included raising her children. But all that while she kept the fire burning within her. “When my children left for higher studies, I decided to follow my passion. But also wanted to create a sustainable way to serve marginalised women in society,” shares Gupta.
Thus, in 2012 Kaaisha was born, with the label’s design ethos centring on the unique beauty and grace that all Indian women possess. Its latest edit Mehfil, too, celebrates legacy and individuality hand in hand.
Tell us about Mehfil?
As the word suggests, Mehfil is thoughtfully crafted while envisioning a perfect gala. The SS ’21 collection is about celebrating homely, cultural functions surrounded by family, friends and well-wishers. The collection is inspired by those magical moments that we can share with our loved ones. We have incorporated various hues, styles and embroidery forms for the same, ranging from camel gold banarasi to vibrant deep pink and dreamy ivory embroidered lehengas.
Your summer fashion advice?
Visually soothing and calming hues combined with airy fabrics is my fashion advice this summer. The perfect summer outfit from the Mehfil collections is our icy blue lehenga with a pre-pleated underskirt hand-embellished with nakshi, gota, zardozi and sabre work. It is paired with a heavily embroidered sequin and cut dana blouse and a net dupatta with embroidered border and tassel edging. Experimenting with the refreshing tones of yellow will be in this season.
What kind of bridal looks can one expect in Mehfil?
I have given a personal touch to each piece of Kaaisha’s collections. From the Mehfil collection, our deep pink lehenga heavily embellished using pearls, sequins, nakshi and dabka; paired with an embellished blouse and two dupattas would make for the perfect bridal look. It has buti work all across the dupatta, accessorised with an embroidered belt.
How conscious is your brand about sustainable fashion?
Our brand is not on a spree of buying clothes and materials and throwing them away. We believe that every inch of cloth should be utilised and hence our vision revolves around curating evergreen, classy garments which fit trends but are still evergreen. Our residual cloth material and embroidery material go to an orphanage, where it is used and recycled by those kids helping them to earn their livelihood. We use paper packaging, thereby eliminating the use of plastic.
Who is the best dressed Bollywood celeb?
Shilpa Shetty carries herself impressively.
Any Bollywood celeb who could do with some fashion advice?
I feel that Aishwarya Rai Bachchan’s dressing sense doesn’t do justice to her beauty.
Wardrobe essentials for women?
A classic kanjivaram sari is a must-have besides a white shirt and denim.
Advice for would-be brides?
The bride should be a bride, not a bridezilla; she shouldn’t go overboard and must divide her looks into different categories. Some of the outfits should be elaborate while some of them simple. She should keep her individuality intact, because a charming personality speaks more than her attire.
What are the collections you are working on currently?
There is an upcoming collection inspired by human resilience in the face of this pandemic where I will blend traditional and western elements.
Price on request. Available on Instagram: @kaaishabyshalini