Susha Suresh’s maiden venture Advika celebrates the traditional sari in a unique contemporary way.
It’s not often that you hear of youngsters designing saris and blouses. Susha Suresh begs to differ. She wants every woman to imagine herself in a traditional get-up — bindi, earrings, bangles and wearing a sari. That’s what her maiden venture Advika (meaning unique) promises. Susha’s Brand Advika started in April believes in taking the ethnic route. With 50 clients in hand, Susha has been retailing out of Shoppo.in.
When did you decide to start your own enterprise?
My passion for textiles goes back to my school days. I have always wanted to design clothes and work with fabrics and textures. This led me to study textile designing. After post-graduation, I started my own enterprise under the label Advika.
Was your post-graduation connected with your enterprise?
I did MA Fine Arts with specialisation in textile design. No extra courses; it is the passion that drives me; more than any course.
Why did you choose saris?
Because I love saris. I love creating them, as there is total freedom as far as creativity and colour go. The fabric is all yours when you design. Personally, I also feel that the sari, as an attire, enhances any body type and makes a woman look gorgeous. Also it is the most elegant and dignified attire on any woman. To me saris are eternal.
Apart from designing, do you outsource the production or do you have a unit?
I do the designing and production myself. I have a tailor and printers who support and execute my designs. Without them this would be incomplete.
Why did you choose online retailing instead of a store?
I am a beginner. To assess my products and the response, I thought an online platform would be better initially so that it helps me build a customer base.
How do you build clientele?
I should thank technology for this. People are well connected. Initially I started selling among my friends and then the Facebook page happened and later came the online sales. People write to me, and I suggest styling tips and also send them pictures for references and sketches of how I intend the styling to be done!
What about sizes and alterations?
What about the price?
Pricing depends on the fabric, sourcing, making and the exclusivity. My basic cottons are priced Rs. 1900 onwards.
What sort of clothes do you design and would you like to diversify into?
I design saris, blouses (unstitched) and dupattas for now. I have plans to do ready-mades also soon.
Complete your look
Must-have sari: A cream or off-white sari with a bright coloured border of choice.
Must-have accessories: Dokra jewellery compliments the ethnic look.
Must-have footwear: A black or dull gold pair with bare minimum glitter and a good shape.
Shop online at: http://shopo.in/shop/advika