Delhi-based designer Divyam Mehta has always been conscious of the world around him while designing. His collections, over the years, have been known to successfully create a bridge between the traditional and the modern by using heritage Indian textiles to create modern silhouettes.
He has also always believed sustainability to be a “natural process” for him and his label. “We’re always conscious of how much we’re producing and what materials we’re using. You have to be mindful of that because an imbalance in this can actually cause harm to nature. We’ve started looking at more alternatives to natural fabrics, that won’t harm the environment and are more sustainable. We’re also doing more work using hand techniques,” he says.
For his latest showcase at Lakmé Fashion Week 2022, the designer is collaborating with the international platform Fashion For Good, to create a collection made out of agricultural waste.
“The organisation was looking to collaborate with designers and textile companies that were known to work with sustainable textiles to create conscious fashion,” says Mehta, “This is how we met AlMat, a textile company that specialises in using alternative materials to create fabric. In this case, they’re transforming agricultural waste into fibres and yarns.”
Speaking of the collection, the designer says that he was heavily inspired by the Kondha tribe of Orissa and their unique connection with nature. “Just like that movie Avatar, where Na’avi people were so culturally interconnected with the nature around them, this tribe is also connected to the environment that way,” says the designer.
As is his trademark, the collection puts a modern spin on the traditional by introducing a mix of Kantha stitches and graphic French knots in the construction of the garments. “We’ve used basic stitches that our ancestors were using and we’ve also taken inspiration from them on how we’re draping the fabrics and cutting the patterns.”
Like the rest of the world, the pandemic has created a shift in the way Mehta thinks and works. “It has, in a way, enhanced my design process,” he says, “We’re now more conscious of the world around us, and so is the consumer who is rethinking the way they buy things.”
The designer concludes the conversation by giving us a quick sneak peek into what we can expect from the collection. “We’re attempting to highlight the workmanship in the creation of the garment in a new and innovative way, you’ll see!”
Keep checking this space for more updates on Lakmé Fashion Week 2022.