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Customisation is the way forward this party season

Even the party scene is competitive these days. Nobody wants to wear something everybody else has, so they are ready to pay a premium for owning an outfit or accessory made especially for them.

fashion and trends Updated: Dec 05, 2012 16:04 IST
Bhairavi Jhaveri

Even the party scene is competitive these days. Nobody wants to wear something everybody else has, so they are ready to pay a premium for owning an outfit or accessory made especially for them.

The trend of bespoke fashion comes when people are already spending generously on how they look. But new bespoke labels in the city are dispelling myths associated with words like ‘customised’ and ‘bespoke’ — such as ‘expensive’ and ‘out of reach’. They are making it more accessible by pricing competitively and giving their labels a relaxed, youthful touch.

As the party season heats up, here are five new bespoke labels you can turn to for that absolutely perfect look.

Bespoke menswear by SS Homme
Sarah Sheikh, 24, and Sandeep Gonsalves, 26

What they do: SS Homme customises shirts, tuxedos, waistcoats, bow ties and ties, sherwanis and Nehru jackets. Sarah, a graduate from London School of Fashion, has
a fashion ethic that is subtle, focusing on clean detailing, fit, fabric and finishing. “I don’t do bling, embroidery or stonework for Indian wear,” she says. “My look is classic, with subtle details such as piping, pocket and collar styles, velvet borders or pleating techniques.”

How it works: After booking an appointment with the duo, you drop in at their Khar studio to check out their sample rack. Pick a fabric using fabric books sourced from brands like Scabal, Loro Piana and J. Hampstead, and be measured from head to toe. Sarah will advise on the silhouette and start detailing the garment based on your personality, body frame and the occasion. An artwork is created on Photoshop, using a scanned version of the chosen fabric to help you visualise the
outfit. It takes around 10 working days for the garment to be ready, and includes two trial fittings.

Price range:
Shirts start at R4,500; full suits start at Rs 18,000; sherwanis start at Rs 28,000
Get in

Bespoke party gowns and dresses by Kazamiir
Haasya Chandna, 26

What she does: Long dresses and gowns are a must-have wardrobe item for this party season. Inspired by designers Alexander McQueen and Elie Saab, Haasya’s label, Kazamiir, specialises in evening gowns and cocktail dresses. With a clientele based in London, Kuwait, Dubai, USA and India, she is abreast with all the latest trends and styles in India and abroad. A graduate of London School of Fashion, Haasya started retailing at multi-designer stores such as Aza, five years ago. Earlier this year, she started customising for individual clients from her studio in Bandra. “An evening gown is hard to buy off the rack; it’s an item that can look stunning if only customised to your body type and taste,” she says.

How it works: Once you fix an appointment with Haasya, the initial discussion is on the budget. Next, she will show a few pieces made for other clients, for you to get an idea of her work. But no piece is made twice in Haasya’s studio as she believes in originality for every client.

Price range: Rs 15,000 to Rs 55,000 for evening gowns; Rs 9,000 to Rs 16,000 for short dresses
Get in touch:

Bespoke handcrafted fashion jewellery by Bbling Accessories
Meghana Mutatkar, 30, and Madhavi Mutatkar, 57

What do they do: Every two months, the mother-daughter duo produces a new collection of 10-12 items, which works as a catalogue for customers. They love working with dark gold, crystal, stones and sometimes even fabric and embellishments.

How it works: You come in with an outfit or occasion in mind and see the latest collection, based on which items are customised or created from scratch. Bbling’s current collection is called Phoenix, a take on royal Egyptian jewellery, and sees a lot of dull gold, chunk chains embellished with coloured, chunky stones.

Price range:
Rs 850-2,500
Get in touch:

Bespoke footwear by Kan
Ileshaa Khatau, 24 and Neomy Khatau, 51

What they do: Neomy took to producing her own label of hand-crafted footwear in 2004, after she struggled to find stylish footwear in stores. Since then, Kan has supplied contemporary, quirky and colourful footwear to The Bombay Store, and now, Aza, Atosa and Vanilla Moon. Clients’ feet are measured and their personality is figured out over social banter and some questions. “Some customers have back problems, some have narrow feet, some have very tiny feet — these customers need stylish shoes in their size, which can’t be found in stores. This is one of the most valuable bespoke services we provide,” says Ileshaa Khatau.

How it works: At their Carmichael Road studio, go through a presentation, a catalogue and fabric swatches. Against a backdrop of bright-hued, quirky footwear in pop colours, brocade, raw silk and dull gold, you are shown ready pieces and are asked if you would like to tweak any of them to your liking. You can also bring reference images or an outfit along.

Price range: Rs 2,200-7,000 depending on the level of customisation
Get in

Customise your shirt online with
Akshay Narvekar, 30, of Bombay Shirt Company

What they do: You turn designer here. Through simple options on their website, you pick details such as type of collar, button, fabric and cuffs for your shirt. To make sure the fit is perfect, you can either pick from the readymade sizes or tweak their measurements. You can also send in a well-fitting shirt of yours to replicate the measurements.

How it works: A cool video teaches you how to measure accurately. Illustrations and descriptions for each fabric type, cuff or collar type, help you make the right choice. Fabrics and styles are also divided into 9 am and 9 pm to make it easier to pick for work or after-work. There are also a sizeable number of pre-loaded designs. You check out, pay with your credit card or cash on delivery. The shirt reaches you in a week. Alterations can be made after the purchase.

Price range: Rs 1,700-1,900
What’s next: A webcam app on the website that will take your measurements directly in two steps, and a range of women’s shirts, trousers, jackets and accessories.