Designer Vaishali S is all set to showcase her collection Srauta at Milan Fashion Week

Blockchain technology, a new pashmina-silk blend and experimental silhouettes are the highlights of the collection

author_img Rashmi Rajagopal Published :  25th February 2022 12:00 AM   |   Published :   |  25th February 2022 12:00 AM

Vaishali in her studio

Vaishali S is having a great start to 2022. Having made a mark with her memorable and refreshing avant garde silhouettes at the Paris Haute Couture Week last year, the Mumbai-based designer is gearing up for her first showcase at Milan Fashion Week later this month. “I’ve been showcasing outside India for a while now but Milan will be a first. It’s very serious and important to me,” says Vaishali, who will also be launching her pret line at the event. 

A look from the collection
A look from the collection

The Palazzo Durini, an iconic 17th century building which currently houses luxury furniture store Edra, will be the venue for the fashion presentation. There couldn’t be a more fitting backdrop, as one can imagine that Vaishali’s highly sculptural, textural and conceptual designs would fit right in. “I think the venue is beautiful and I am very excited for the show,” enthuses the designer. Titled Srauta, Sanskrit for  sacrifice’, the collection draws inspiration from the concept of sacrifice. Here, it refers to a substance in nature making a sacrifice by transforming itself in order to be part of something bigger, such as fur that is turned into thread and then becomes fabric. “We don’t say we are wearing thread, we say we are wearing clothes. We don’t refer to each other as souls, but by our names. The particle at the very core of everything we know is not given importance, so I wanted to use this collection to focus on that,” explains Vaishali. And so, the textiles Vaishali has worked with for the collection reflects the theme.

Apart from Merino wool and khunn, which she routinely works with, Srauta is also heavy on pashmina from Ladakh, made from the hair of goats. “This is the first time I’m using pashmina. I did a lot of research before embarking on this project. We have the luxury to create our own fabric. So we have used a pashmina and silk blend. The texture is very different from regular pashmina,” says the designer.

Vaishali at work in her studio
Vaishali at work in her studio

While innovative corded detailing, deconstructed shapes and texturally rich surfaces continue to be major elements that set her designs apart, Srauta, Vaishali reveals will also see a few new silhouettes she has not attempted before. “There are a mix of Indian and non-Indian silhouettes, from draped kurtas to statement trousers, but my focus will always be on the fabrics,” she says, adding that the palette is a combination of jewel tones that shift from aquamarine and ruby red to ame-thyst, pearly white, jade green and slate grey.

Another new feature that the designer highlights is the use of blockchain technology to ensure transparency and sustainability. By scanning a QR code on the garments’ tag, customers can read about the journey of the piece of clothing they just invested in, from details regarding the yarn to the goats from whom the yarn was made. “I really feel that it is very important to innovate and experiment, otherwise you are never going to move forward,” says Vaishali, who has a number of exciting new ventures lined-up for the year. “I am not allowed to talk about it now but will reveal details soon,” she says, signing off.