Varsha Shetty’s new line Nazm raises the stakes with their gender-neutral accessories
Designer Varsha Shetty has always been a closet artist. However, it was during the lockdown last year, that she decided to make a transition from her medical career to jewellery designer. The label, called Nazm, was recently unveiled on Instagram and the website will be live in April. “After nine years of rigorous training to be a doctor, I chose my passion over my profession. It was challenging, but fashion and jewellery always felt like my calling,” says the Bengaluru-based designer.
‘Nazm’, a rhyming verse is an integral part of Urdu poetry. As there is no limitation to the size of a nazm in poetry, she thought that it would be a good name to encapsulate the ethos of the brand. Nazm isn’t afraid to be unconventional. Varsha tells us she was completely on-board with the idea that the accessories do not have a gender. “Given how inclusivity must be at the core of everything we do especially in fashion, my jewellery is meant for everyone who wants to wear it. It was never made for a specific gender,” she says.
One of a kind
Her design philosophy is almost as bold as her decision to shift from medicine to creating accessories. There’s ample silver in her debut collection. A lot of pieces one sees are vintage and sourced from various artisans. Hence, most necklaces, all the rings and kadas are unique and can’t be replicated. Varsha shares, “They also have an inherent sense of nostalgia, transporting you to a different time and place. A lot of these vintage pieces have been passed on over generations, which speak of an era gone by, adding history and value to the piece. They are rare and one of a kind.”
The self-taught designer confesses that spending money on silver jewellery was a no-no when she was growing up because her family loved gold. However, she had a change of heart as a teenager when she saw actress Malaika Arora dance to Chaiyya Chaiyya in the film, Dil Se. “I fell in love with the silver jhumkis she wore,” recalls Varsha, when we ask her what inspired her to work with silver.
The designer also asserts that Nazm is an extension of her style and one can find a great deal of variety. “It gives the patrons a choice to define their personality,” says Varsha, adding that the line is seasonless. What one can expect is jewellery inspired by Afghani-Kuchi traditions. She tells us that it is versatile enough to not be limited by the attire one is planning on donning. Apart from the vintage additions to the collections, there are some that have been crafted by melting old coins and some that are a mix of German-silver mixed with brass. One can also spot semi-precious stones, glass enamel, old coins, plastic and stone beading. “They are rugged enough to withstand the ravages of everyday wear,” says Varsha, in conclusion.