The International Woolmark Prize recipient (2015-2016), Designer Suket Dhir describes his advent into the fashion industry as ‘a moment that happened in his life’.
In a country obsessed with grades and professional studies, Dhir admits that he was never a student that excelled in conventional studies, A lot that kept him engrossed and captivated during his school life was his creative assignments.
“During the 7-8 years in boarding, I’ve always been creative, never good at studies, I’d also do my classmates assignments.”
After 5 years of wandering aimlessly, quitting jobs after jobs and dropping out of various courses, He stood clueless, until his dear friend advised him to pursue fashion studies.
“My friend said, you belong to a family of cloth merchants, you are creative and watch FTV too”
An alumnus of NIFT, Delhi (2005), Suket took his age as an advantage to have a better understanding of the curriculum. Even though infamous in his batch, he recounts NIFT being the turning point for him “NIFT was healing, there was a calling there, it boosted my confidence”.
When asked about his label SUKETDHIR and the inspirations behind his styles he said ” Every collection is inspired by my childhood, or a happy memory of my life that I try to bring out through my designs and garments”
Having introduced his label first at Good Earth (2011), he points out that women would often pick his garments for their fathers, husbands or partners as his collection inculcates a classic appeal and nazakat (elegance) which engages women first and then men.
“Classic appeals to everyone, it’s timeless and effortless.’ Nazakat (Elegance) is what goes into it, thus it appeals to women first and then men.”
As a designer, Suket’s creations are for himself too, so he looks for wearability, practicality, and longevity in his pieces. He integrates innovation maximizing its usage. Grounded and subtle in his tone, his wisdom can be made evident through his thoughts on fashion working in harmony with nature “Working with no wastage and with organic products is suppose to be our responsibility something we should do, no reward or award should be expected in return.”
Being a menswear designer, with designs and silhouettes drafted out for more comfortable and casual wear, he faces very less or zero competition in the Indian market, he is probably bringing in a wave of minimalism with a distinct style of fashion amongst fashioners both within the Indian subcontinent and globally.
His Latest Collection ‘He for she’ is a breaker of stereotypical, gender-based clothing. The collection inspired by Svetlana Dhir, his wife and her tendency of styling herself from outfits of his closet, consists of nature-inspired prints that are tailored or structured in smaller sizes to fit the women’s body without any change in its shape or pattern.
“Indian fashion and textiles have a bright future globally, right now we are not even scratching the surface, wait and watch it will happen.” Suket Dhir instantly answered with the same when asked about the future of Indian fashion and textiles at a global level. Besides this, he also envisions his label to represent and be the epitome of Indian craft and culture and achieve a legacy by having a worldwide presence.
Opposing the old-time saying, Dhir in his honesty quoted ”uchch jivan, uchch vichaar” with so many households depending upon him, he prefers to move ahead in life and look for the new instead of feeling depressed and living with the basic. Suggesting the same to the upcoming and the ones desiring to learn design he quotes ”We have moved ahead from the Roti, Kapda and Makaan concept, it is now important to work for passion. The money will flow in if you do what you really love. But make sure to take internships and do a practical job before investing in higher education, this way you will know whether you really want to do it or not ”
At the end of the conversation, he left I Knock Fashion with a hint about his new collection but decided not to reveal anything. We are now eagerly waiting to see his innovations, thoughts, and ideas that would reflect in his new collection of clothing.