Surrey’s Davi Bains-Gill never thought her love for fashion and design could be her livelihood. She pursued a career in social services and landed a job with government, all while designing clothes for herself, family and friends on the side.
“I never thought that my passion could be my work,” Bains-Gill told Vancouver Desi. “So I put that aside and I did my real job.”
But what she put aside only got “bigger and bigger.”
“People liked what I was wearing because I made my own clothes and it just kind of branched out,” she said.
So 16 years ago she made the “big jump” from government work to a career in fashion — and she hasn’t looked back.
By 2003 she opened her Surrey-based store Armaan DBG and has since run annual fashion shows with Bollywood celebrities like Salman Khan, Sanjay Dutt and Saif Ali Khan and also showcased her designs at the TOIFA Women’s Day Forum Fashion Show with Dia Mirza when the extravagant awards show came to Vancouver in 2013. Her latest show, Fashion Romance 2015, will be held Feb. 13 in Surrey.
“It’s a totally different job,” Bains-Gill said of her career change. “But this was my passion, so this was what I chose.”
The designer did the bulk of her training in Mumbai alongside the city’s well-known professionals and she still returns every year.
Her signature style is Bollywood-inspired and usually invovles a fusion of East-meets-West.
“I love mixing the two (styles),” said Bains-Gill.“A lot of the younger generation (are) happy with that because they’re mixing their roots with their Western country.”
“(They can) mix it into something they can wear out and feel good in, instead of feeling very, very ethnic.”
At Fashion Romance 2015 she’ll feature 45 or her newest pieces which range from Rajasthani themed, to wedding, lace, embroidery, threadwork and a collection of jackets and shawls. Part of the proceeds from the show will go towards The Mamta Foundation of Canada, which helps build orphanages for abandoned girls in Punjab.
Fashion Romance 2015 includes a fashion show and an evening of dinner and dancing at Royal King Palace at 7 p.m. Feb. 13.
Tickets are $85 each or $650 for a table of eight and can be purchased at Armaan DBG on 128th Street in Surrey.