Amrita Thakur On Reinventing Festive Wear

by Hrishitaa Sharma

Amrita Thakur started her own label in 2011 and gave bridal wear a refreshing avatar with some classy elements like minimal embroidery and bubbly colours. She’s come a long way at such a young age and does not fail to inspire women all round with her creations and her sense of style. We had to catch up with her and know all about her journey in the industry and what makes her tick. So here’s a good read to know this beautiful designer inside and out!

Q1. What encouraged you to open up your own label?

I always knew I wanted to work in this line, there was no question about it. But the motivation behind it was to be different. At the time, there weren’t too many people doing trousseau / light festive wear. It was either very heavy or very, very light. I think maybe you could count on your fingers how many people did that mid-section. I veered towards those kinds of clothes, so I wanted to make things that I would wear, and that’s how I started.

Q2. What has been your constant inspiration?

Constant inspiration is really to come up with something that people aren’t doing. And I don’t mean that in like a ‘create a new invention’ thing, but in clothing – to apply embroidery differently, or work in applique differently. I always strive to do things differently and to keep it subtle and simple, yet let the person shine through.

Q3. How would you describe your aesthetic? Is it ethnic or is it contemporary?

I think its ethnic, but modern. In the sense, like a kurta and sharara that’s done in wrap-style. So it’s essentially a modern twist to Indian clothes.

Q4. You’ve dressed a couple of celebrities from Bollywood, any memory that stands out?

I think the top memory would have to be when Anita called me for a saree as she was styling Aishwarya Rai Bachchan for a Longines Ad. That went viral and everyone wanted the Aishwarya Rai saree! It was copied multiple times as well. It was very special because a few months later you open the papers and there’s the most beautiful woman in the world in your saree. That moment was unmatchable, all thanks to Anita!

Q5. Tell us about the industry. Do you get any downtime? Which is the busiest month or does the work always continue?

The busiest would have to be September onwards because it’s not just the wedding season but also festival season like Rakhi, Karva Chauth, and Teej. The crux of it starts from September-October onwards and goes up to around April. And after that, it’s a dead season!

Q6. So that’s when you holiday?

That’s when you HAVE to holiday because otherwise, you’ll drop dead! Plus I love to travel.

Q7. What were some of the last places you visited?

The last place I went outside of India was Bali, which was gorgeous! My husband and I literally wanted to move there. The last place I went to in India, was the Nilgiri mountains and I have to say, it was the most beautiful place I’ve seen in India. It was so much better than the hills of the north!

Q8. What can we look forward to in the coming collection of Amrita Thakur?

I think I push myself to come up with things that are not in the market right now because everyone’s work is just looking like each others’. It’s sad that in the run for selling and being commercially viable everyone’s just doing the same thing. If it’s thread work then everyone’s doing thread work; if it’s zardozi then everyone’s doing zardozi. So I think of always retaining your own identity – why someone wants to come to you and not go to XYZ . My primary goal is to give something fresh to a client or a customer, something that they haven’t seen before.

Q9. What excites you as a designer?

I think for me it would have to be embroidery, even though my designs don’t carry a lot of embroideries. And that’s what I love about it, that you can go completely mad or you can keep it as subtle and controlled as much as you want. I don’t just mean hand-embroidery, all of the surface embellishment, whether it’s applique or embossing or cut-work, there’s so many possibilities! For example, the artwork for a flower can be done in millions of different ways in terms of however you want to present it. So that’s what’s the most exciting bit. I love working with thread work, zardozi, but in minimal and more delicate. I love working with beads and doing a cocktail look and that’s the beauty of it, there are absolutely no limitations with that.

Q10. And you come across as a very stylish woman yourself. What’s your personal style?

My personal style is easy, it’s simple and it should be effortless. Even if I’ve thought of putting three pieces together, it should really come off looking effortless. It should look like you’ve just thrown things on. And that’s when I think people can see through what your style is. If you’re trying too hard then someone can always tell.

Q11. Any styling tips you’d like to give brides-to-be?

When brides are trying out an outfit that isn’t heavily embellished, they often forget that they’re going to have jewellery on, their hair is going to be done up, and their face is going to be looking beautiful and glowing. They get completely worried and turned off, as they think the outfit is too light for the occasion. They forget to imagine it with jewellery and all the other works because all that adds to the garment and completes your look. Instead, you end up wearing 23kgs of embroidery, another 5kgs on the neck and another 3kgs on the forehead and it just kills the look (in a bad way). Do not feel insecure with lighter garments because you have to shine through. And trust me, it’s your wedding, nobody is going to forget you are the bride. It’s your choice whether to look like a vegetable market or a beautiful florist.

Q12. What are a few things that are available on Nykaa Fashion that you love?

I love the black crop top with the attached dupatta and a belt. I think it’s so trendy, young and glamorous. It’s something that you can wear time and again. I like things that you can mix and match later as well and not just get stuck with it. The second thing would have to be the lehenga and the wrap blouse option. The wrap blouse pairing is so cool with just a choker on the neck. And, the third thing, would be one of the tunics. Just the versatility of having one of them in your wardrobe, you can put it on when you have a lunch or have one of these Indian-y things to go to that aren’t over the top.

Thanks for sharing your journey, your vision and throwing in some styling tips for brides-to-be, Amrita. We can’t wait to see what lovely pieces you create next! For those, who are looking to shop some gorgeous festive wear, here are some of the pieces we abolutely recommend.

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AMRITA THAKUR

Chanderi Embroidery…

₹26,000

AMRITA THAKUR

Pink Embroidery…

₹64,000

AMRITA THAKUR

Peach Embroidery…

₹69,000

AMRITA THAKUR

Chanderi Floral…

₹26,000

AMRITA THAKUR

Red Raw Silk…

₹29,000

AMRITA THAKUR

Chanderi Floral…

₹26,000

AMRITA THAKUR

Chiffon Embroidery…

₹16,800

AMRITA THAKUR

Pink Embroidery…

₹38,000

AMRITA THAKUR

Chiffon Flora…

₹16,800

AMRITA THAKUR

Peach Embroidery…

₹64,000

AMRITA THAKUR

Black Georgette…

₹38,000

AMRITA THAKUR

Chiffon Flora…

₹16,800

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