For a designer to be just three fashion weeks old and still have her own league of steady followers, it takes more than just a thought. It takes spell-bending creations, will power and definitely a farsightedness to have the likes of Sonam Kapoor, Konkona Sen Sharma, Deepti Naval, Rani Mukerji and Shubha Mudgal as its cross-my-heart-and-hope-to-die fans.
Designer Anavila Misra, who’s known for her modish experiments with linen, feels that there’s nothing which makes a woman look more beautiful than a sari and that it's a must-have for every Indian woman. “I’m an Indian designer; Indian by my roots, Indian by my thoughts. Even though my husband has a job in Vietnam, I stay here. Japanese kimono is such a beautiful garment but it’s still fading away. Sari isn’t."
“Nothing else can make me look as elegant and beautiful as a sari does. Because the drapes have something eternally beautiful," adds the designer.
With an aim to inculcate the love for sari in the minds of young girls, Anavila also came up with an idea of Sari dolls. These dolls, not just have an element of nostalgia for the older women but also gives younger girls a reason to know more and experiment with saris from a young age.
While most of the people in fashion world regard her for her natural, comfortable and trend-setting linen creations for women, little do people know that she started her career with menswear and that’s when she decided to stick to linen. “I started with menswear when I was working with corporate sector for 4 years. I was doing these linen shirts for men and that’s when I fell in love with the fabric. It’s a natural freely breathing fabric; perfect for every weather. My whole love for linen emerged from there only because I observed that nobody was doing linen for womenswear at that point of time”.
Unlike other designers, Anavila finds her luxury in not shimmering silk or extravagant brocades but the almost-staid linen spun exclusively by weavers from West Bengal. Her designs speak of fabric, texture, feel and the weave.
With 2016, there has been quite a shift of trends in the Indian fashion industry. One such trend is the inclination towards the promotion of handloom sector for which the designer is evidently happy. “I’m really happy. When young designers see mature designers working with handloom and see that they’re doing well and there’s a market for it; they’re inspired to do more”.
At FDCI's Amazon India Fashion Week 2016, she showcased her latest collection 'When I Look Back Tomorrow' which comprised of as many as 34 ensembles and each of them had a stylish spin to it. The highlight, however, was the pocketed-saris which looks like a must have for every fashionista.