Call it a boon or a bane, at the launch of Farah Khan Fine Jewellery at DLF Emporio in New Delhi, the buzz that surrounded the event was as much about the precious pieces glittering away in showcases upstairs as the guest list (Hrithik and Sussanne Roshan, Zayed Khan, Fardeen Khan, etc.). Bollywood, on several occasions, ends up outshining things it is called upon to promote.
Farah, an alumna of the Gemological Institute of America, however, knows her product. In the trade for 18 years now, Farah has become one of the most recognisable jewellery designers in the country, without taking into account famous parents, siblings, brothers-in-law or cousins. While a big Bollywood clientele that ranges from Deepika Padukone to Priyanka Chopra must draw attention, the jewellery, as a standalone thing, probably sustains it.
With diamonds, emeralds, rubies, sapphires and pearls set in gold, Farah's designs lean more towards elegant than quirky or eccentric (though there's that occasional sapphire-studded ring with two gold flies sitting on it). On whether the thought of turning to more new-age favourites, like steel or silver and other non-precious material, ever crosses her mind, Farah says, “I think I've created a niche in high-end fine jewellery. I've not thought of working with silver as yet because I cater to a specific crowd. I'm very happy doing that stuff because that's where my forte lies. Maybe years later… I don't know then.”
Among stones, the emerald leads as a clear favourite — she's even wearing emerald earrings and finger ring. “The emerald is my favourite stone, specially the Columbian emerald. They're cool to look at, but they're very fiery. I think it best describes me; I'm very cool, but if pushed I can get very fiery,” she smiles. Rubies and rubellites are other favourite rocks.
“I prefer colour in my jewellery because I think just doing plain diamonds is like doing a world in black and white,” Farah explains.
Asked to pick a particular piece in the store that stands out for her in terms of final output and the effort that went into it, Farah doesn't take long to point to a Burmese ruby cuff. “It took me four months to make.”
The wearer bagging most of the attention is not a problem, she says. “I think the person should always wear the jewellery, and the jewellery should never wear you. It's very important to wear just that amount, like today I'm wearing earrings and a ring. I could have worn a bracelet, but that would have been too much,” Farah reasons.
The Emporio store is a franchise with AKM Mehrasons. “My next store is going to be an international destination… very soon, and I'm not revealing that!” is all she lets you in on.
With almost two decades in the field, how has the sailing been?
“The last 18 years have been learning years. I've aced my trade right now, I know what I'm doing. And also an amazing thing about my trade right now is I don't have to imagine it; I can create it. So for me that is more important,” says Farah. “To create something out of nothing… it makes me feel like I'm god. You have this thought, this idea, and then you create this three-dimensional object out of it. It's giving it life, you know. And I think that I enjoy creating more than I enjoy selling. And if I had my way I'd keep all my jewellery, I wouldn't sell,” she goes on, adding as an afterthought, “But it wouldn't make business sense.”