The lady who pioneered fashion: Ritu Kumar
The lady who pioneered the term ‘fashion’ in the Indian context is none other than the famous fashion designer from India Ritu Kumar. Her major contribution has been in reviving the Indian traditional craft and design. She is one of those very few who has emphasized the importance of hand-made products because it can be cost-effective and looks more gorgeous than machine made clothes. More than two decades back, Ritu had started with hand block printers in a village near Kolkata. Now she has come a long way with her dedicated and committed designers. Her work mainly focuses on cotton, silk and leather. Her forte is traditional Indian clothes, which mainly highlights on India’s textile and embroidery. But she also gives importance to the combination of Indian and western wear.
This Indo-West wear has block prints trapping, embroidery and craft input on a western style. Ritu Kumar has designed the wardrobes for Miss India like Manpreet Brar, Rani Jeyraj, Ruchi Malhotra, and Lara Dutta during their preparation for the international pageant. And they were all awarded with the Most Outstanding Evening Gown in International pageants. She has a boutique named after her ‘Ritu’s Boutique and has many outlets throughout India. Ritu Kumar has launched her book ‘Costumes and Textiles of Royal India’. International personalities like Late Princess Diana, and Jemima Khan wear her outfits. The awards which she has won include ‘Lifetime Achievement Award set by NIFT’ , ‘Outstanding Woman Entrepreneur Award by PHDCC’ and ‘ Lifetime achievement award at the Kingfisher Fashion Fantasia’.