Read about the basics of style and fashion from the very best!
What is your vision for prêt menswear in the country?
It’s not found its identity yet. We’re still trying to figure out what it is. We’re still trying to ape the West. I think the more basic it is, the better it is because it’s all about finding your style which has not really happened here.
Your label focuses on meticulously handcrafted fashion. What’s your take on fast fashion?
There’s so much fashion waste because of fast fashion. We are strong supporters of slow fashion in the sense that even though we do two seasons, we encourage upcycling older seasons’ pieces for people so that they don’t discard their old clothes. Fast fashion is only adding to the clutter.
True. How can men bring a sense of fun to their wardrobe?
Actually, Péro menswear is very simple with an attention to details. It’s not very over-the-top. There will be handmade buttons, different coloured button holes, a playful selvedge on the jacket, or a motif embroidered somewhere on the shirt. On its own there’s a bit of subtle quirkiness about it. And I think that’s it. There’s nothing more that needs to be added to it.
So Ranveer Singh’s flamboyant style doesn’t work for you?
No, we are not over-the-top. It’s more for a person who is sensitive to what he is wearing and wears it for comfort because it makes him feel special. We weave our own fabrics and pay a lot of attention to making it comfortable.
That’s great. And how do you want a Péro man to feel wearing your clothes?
So basically for us it’s not about standing out in a crowd. It’s about how somebody reacts to clothing when they take a closer look at it. Fashion is mostly looked at as something that helps you find your identity, or make a mark or stand out from the rest. Here it is about gelling in with the crowd but when you’re interacting with somebody one-on-one, they’ll definitely notice that you’re wearing something special because of the minute details which can only be visible from a closer distance.
Up close and personal it is. Does your approach differ when designing menswear compared to womenswear?
Yes. Womenswear gives us a lot of liberty if we were to have embroideries, florals or beads etc. On the contrary, we restrict ourselves a lot when we’re working on menswear. The basic sensibility of Péro is to make feel-good textiles. You will not see a lot of drapes in menswear. We work on basic silhouettes and take it to the next level by doing special fabrics and adding details.
What are the basic style commandments everyone should keep in mind while dressing up?
Even if the pieces are simple, layering makes it very interesting. People should try and learn the art of layering clothes. When you layer there are choices of different textures, fabrics—you could wear checks with stripes. Instead of embellishing your clothing, just work with layering it—a shirt on top of a shirt in two different fabrics. So I think that is what adds something extra to it.
What do you like to see men wear?
I like men in white shirts and jeans. As basic as that. As long as the shirt is well-tailored. Basically anything that makes the man feel comfortable because that reflects on his face and in his movement.
Do you feel there’s a significant interest for young designers at the moment in the industry?
Definitely. Because they have a fresher perspective, and this is a new decade of designers and it’s all about experimenting now. I like the fact that young designers are looking at Indian textiles and that is why the focus has shifted on them rather than designers doing traditional trousseau or ornamental clothing.
How has your own work evolved since you began your label?
There’s a lot of change that has come in the kind of styles we do and how we interpret bodies because now we see clothes on people’s bodies and we know what’s working. It has made us more confident in terms of what textiles to use and how to use them. In terms of evolution, I don’t think it’s us in isolation, it’s also the people who are working with us. We work with a set of craftspeople and, with time, they are evolving and their techniques are becoming better—as they challenge themselves to create new things with the same skillset.
What’s your fashion resolution for the year?
I think it’s always comfort comes first.