Amrich: is a portmantue of the designers’ names Amit and Richard.
In the past few years I had been noticing certain women who are comfortable in their skin and trend-setters in their own right, wearing this noteworthy label. So going ahead with my quest for things that make me go hmmm, sometime ago I finally managed to meet the creative heads at their Tughlakabad Extension studio, in New Delhi.
Amit Vijaya, the more vocal of the two, was actually studying to become a doctor and fulfill his mother’s wishes. But fate wouldn’t have it any other way, so after trying his hand at graphic designing in his father’s reprographics business he finally joined NID, Ahemdabad, for Post Graduation in Textile Designing. Graphics and colour aligned to modernism, describe this young man’s passion. Tweaking every traditional technique to make it Amrich:’s own, gives him a high. Infact tying the shibori knots and making wall art of his design experiments is therapeutic for him. A thriller read by the likes of David Baldacci or a song till it’s done to death (latest craze Uptown Funk by Mark Ronson) are his ways of unwinding during recesses.
While for Richard Pandav his partner, it was graduation in Information Technology which mirrored his artistic bent of mind and led him to NID for an Apparel Designing degree. As an introvert child, dressing up his tomboy sister for occasions were highlights of the day. But he on the other hand, devours anything traditional, vintage or pretty from our everyday lives. Mindlessly watching television series like The Good Wife, reruns of Sex & the City and Friends, internet browsing, shopping and admiring precious jewellery (Gem Palace, Jaipur and the Graff Diamonds, U.K.) is entertainment for him.
For the two with no art background, every waking bit at NID had been a learning curve as they were exposed to regional arts, crafts, textiles, music and movies through non-conformist ways. They pointed to me how Kalaraksha in Kutch and IICD in Jaipur, are generating similar impetus towards the preservation of traditional arts and crafts amongst the new generation, at both rural and urban levels.
So after working as design consultants for Ravissant, Amrich: was realized in 2011 to involve the burgeoning talent. Brit and Madras Plaids, Andhra’s Telia Rumal designs, Orissa’s Ikat, Bengal Khadi and Jamdani along with this region’s Dhanyakali saree designs, handwoven wool from Kutch and ofcourse Rajasthani handicraft from Jaipur and Jodhpur have already been a part of the label’s design journey till date.
Amrich: speaks minimalism, eclectically in non-blingy, bias and asymmetric cuts using handwoven fabrics. Noir – the A/W14 collection presents geometric shapes unconventionally with batik and shibori. Their each line, every season, consists of 7-8 different fabrics which are all labour intensive declaring it sustainable fashion – the magic formula for resurgence of craftsmen at the grassroots, world over.
Am eyeing this silk cotton and zari checkered jacket and pants in muted gold and silver, for an upcoming wedding in the family – ain’t it chic!!