Classic, recyclable bling is all the rage in the intimate wedding circuit, explains Gauri Himatsingka
Kolkata-based designer Gauri Himatsingka’s genre-bending design language is serving her especially well amid this unpredictable fashion season since shoppers are opting for smarter, adaptable bling. Himatsingka’s forte has always been melding classical influences with modern, edgy styling and with her newest festive collection Tara, the designer has only strengthened her niche. Her new line-up is especially relevant this season as intimate weddings have brought about some visible changes in the desi bridal shopping circuit. We caught up with Himatsingka to explore what the brides and shoppers of Kolkata are looking for:
Tell us about Tara, your festive lineup
For Tara, I’ve focused on classical, and influences, styled along modern lines. I plan to release it like an ongoing line-up where I’ll also include a selection of my earlier festive bestsellers. I think it’s relevant now, because weddings are going the minimal route, with fewer people. So people are going for pieces that are not too over-the-top or overtly bridal in aesthetic and can be recycled. I’ve used a lot of traditional motifs but they are strung and set up in a contemporary way which makes them a lot more wearable. And many of the numbers feature some stylised enamel work and pearls.
How has the shutdown affected the desi wedding or festive fashion circuit? Have you noticed a change in buying patterns?
I think people are working hard to not let the pandemic dampen their spirits, they are still celebrating Rakhi, weddings and other festivities. People don’t stop being happy when the festivities grow smaller, of course. I think versatile jewellery is in demand, something designed along the fusionist lines which can be worn in more than one kind of occasion. So the focus is on evergreen pieces which never stop being relevant and have a classic quality about them. I don’t think there has been a change in spending habits per se, people are buying what they like. A lot of them haven’t been shopping for so long, so I think they are now open to splurging.
How did the shutdown affect your process?
During April and May there was hardly anything new happening, so I put systems in place for my work and myself and we started implementing these changes in June when we resumed work. We essentially moved towards a more organised approach. Our stores are open only three days a week. I shifted the karigars closer to their homes so they don’t have to commute as much.
We did notice a huge shift vis-a-vis online sales, more and more people are buying their jewellery virtually. I think this wouldn’t have happened if not for the lockdown, especially in case of jewellery shopping. We were hoping this massive shift to online-led shopping habits would take at least another two years. But the shutdown has accelerated that.
What are the biggest trends in statement jewellery this year, especially in the wedding fashion circuit?
Millennials are loving the big earring trend, with longer silhouettes or something that’s chunky and heavily studded.