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Nimita Rathod gears up for the fashion week

Colours and fabrics that mimic light and shadow are the key elements of Nimita Rathod's collection.

fashion and trends Updated: Mar 21, 2007 11:25 IST
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As a child, Nimita Rathod did what most girls do, played with dolls. She also did something that most girls don't do. She crafted them a whole fashion wardrobe and built a doll house from scratch.

So much for early indications of a future career. But growing up in Baroda meant Rathod really didn't know anything about the fashion industry. "A career in fashion wasn't popular back then. There was hardly any awareness," she says, explaining why she didn't take a course at NIFT or NID, right after school itself.

She took a graduate course in textile science instead, at the MS University, Baroda. It was there that she finally interacted with people from the field and zeroed in on NID for her post graduation. "We learnt to do everything. Photography, product design, apparel and accessories, set design. I could do it all by the time the course was over".

Even after NID, Rathod continued to learn. Having won a scholarship from Domus Academy, Milan, she lost no time in getting a second masters in fashion design which focused more on the global business of fashion than just the technical design aspect of it that NID had focused on. It meant working on full-fledged collections under "international mentors" who critiqued her work to better suit the fashion market worldwide.

There, on the streets of Milan amidst all the Baroque architecture, Rathod found inspiration for her thesis, which has now also provided fodder for her collection at the Lakme Fashion Week. "The buildings intrigued me because they dramatised the effect of light and shadow. It brought to mind the Chiaroscuro technique, where there is movement from clarity to obscurity. Things are revealed, then hidden."

Colours and fabrics that mimic light and shadow are the key elements of her collection. Dusty orange and gold are the 'light' colours, while browns, greys, blacks are the 'shadow' colours. Similarly some fabrics, like silk and satin, are glossy and reflect light, and other fabrics are matt, like wool, blotting out light. Rathod used these qualities to create her clothes, with subtle metal ornamentation and applique-work.

Melange World in Mumbai has already approached her and the LFW will hopefully bring her other buyers. Despite the fashion week hype, Rathod isn't out of her depth. Instead she regards the spurt in interviews as a reward for the hard work she has put into the collection. And hopefully the applause will continue.

First Published: Mar 20, 2007 15:35 IST