As I sit to write this article, I’ve just slipped into a rib-knit polo in light weight jersey. The first cool breeze of the impeding winters has hit Calcutta this morning at 5.00. I’m thinking of my core emotional driver behind publishing a post every Tuesday and Friday. It's not that there isn't enough content on fashion and sustainability online. In fact, fashion might be the most popular subject that the internet has content around. Every few weeks a new crop of fashion writers and bloggers launch into the market - some of them wanting to make a career out of it and a few (like me) who try to give shape to their abstract thoughts through words.
The desire to write about the industry has always been flowering inside me, but I wanted to stay away from producing mainstream fashion content. There are enough magazines and new age influencers doing great work around that. Such a popular area of interest and yet my heart ached to consume fashion literature that would not only speak to my body but speak to my soul as well.
In my idealistic world, there are people like me who would love to see life through the beauty and joy that this industry brings to us every day. In my idealistic world, there are people who want to enhance their personalities through the art of dressing well. In my idealistic world, there are people who are mesmerized by this multi-billion dollar industry inspiring them to elevate their tastes and aesthetics in life.
I write to bring fashion out of the myth of frivolity. I write to imbue fashion with the love, respect, and admiration that it truly deserves. I also write to nudge the people within the industry to pause and reflect as to which direction we must cumulatively take the industry forward in.
In my decision to invest in well-researched, well-designed, and well-made products I find myself becoming a polished and well-conducted person. This doesn't go to say that I wasn't all of that before - but it brought in a kind of authenticity and patience that previously were absent. It's also put into practice the art of saying a big yes to a few really good things and a big no to a plethora of the not-so-great ones.
You only understand this through practice. One of my first vintage buys was a striped Emporio Armani blazer that I purchased from No Border Shop in Mumbai. As I swiped my card to claim the piece I was overtaken by a sudden nostalgia of old school style and a retro-like charm about myself. This is what fashion is. It is about the stories that you find inside yourself. It's about the persona that fashion gifts you in return for your investment in it.
Fashion is the garment for our human body, which is the most important material asset we have in life. How can it then be frivolous? Art, music, films, and other creative industries have touched humanity in similar ways, but nothing is as close to our body as fashion is. How can you not be interested in it?
In the summer of 2019, I made my second solo trip to my favourite cities. As I walked through the streets, of Milano and Florence, taking in the evening scent of Italian olive oil and pesto across the streets, I wondered what brings so much beauty to this country and its people. I realize now, it’s how seriously they take aesthetics and craftsmanship as part of their daily lives. It's not something reserved for a wedding day. It's how you show up in the world for yourself and everyone around you. It's why you have the greatest luxury houses emanating from Italy out into the world. They take their fashion seriously.
Serious is not boring. It shows you care. It shows that it matters.
Maybe I am called to write on things that matter. Beauty and taste in that case matter a lot to me. And if you’d like to raise your quality of life it should start mattering to you as well.
Until next time…