For celebrated jewellery designer Riddhima Kapoor Sahni it was just another day of checking emails, when an email from Helen Anthony’s team caught her attention. Helen Anthony, which is a UK-based high fashion brand spearheaded by renowned and popular fashion designer Naeem Anthony, wanted to collaborate with Riddhima for their Spring Summer 2023 collection at London Fashion Week.
Riddhima’s happiness knew no bounds as life comes a full circle for the talented designer. “It all began in London, I went to London to complete my studies, I did my fashion there, my marketing there. Now I am going back and putting up a show, it is very nostalgic,” shares Riddhima. Even though she knew it was a fabulous opportunity, it meant she had to put in a lot of work. In a span of 2-3 weeks, she managed to get her team together and create Samara, an exclusively designed collection named after her daughter.
Dedicating the collection to her darling daughter, Riddhima says, “My child gives me a lot of inspiration. Samara, my child, my daughter is extremely precious to me. My collection is my debut collection at London Fashion Week, and I thought let me name it after Samara, because it is very precious to me. This collection is very close to my heart.”
Riddhima who is all set to fly to London on her birthday (September 15) recalls her conversation with her mother Neetu Kapoor who tried convincing her to leave a day later. “I am leaving on my birthday morning (15th Sept). Yes, it is a working birthday as I have fittings etc. Mom was like you could at least have left on the 16th,” laughs Riddhima, adding that her mom will always be her inspiration. She says, “I get my inspiration from my mother. She is a role model and an icon.”
When asked how Neetu Kapoor, Ranbir Kapoor and Alia Bhatt reacted to the news, she says, “They were totally ecstatic. My mom was like ‘Oh my god, so amazing. I am so excited. Even the Kapoors won’t be attending the show, Riddhima says, “As a family, they are very excited for me and the show.”
London Fashion Week will mark Riddhima’s debut as a jewellery designer where she will be showcasing her line alongside Helen Anthony’s designs. Calling it a perfect blend of the East and West, the collaboration will see the best of both worlds come alive on the runway. “The theme revolves around East meets West and the collaboration is a perfect amalgamation of styles from the East and the West together. Anthony is so amazing, so talented and so easy to work with. My husband [Bharat Sahni], who is into garments and understands clothing, while flipping through Anthony’s catalogue said that one piece is better than the other. Each piece is unique, and it tells a story too. And I think that’s why he wanted to collaborate with us because he wanted to tell a story where East meets West and merge both cultures.”
Working with Anthony was an amazing experience for Riddhima, when asked about the equation she shares with the designer, she says, “It was very easy to work with him, we are on the same page. It is very important for two designers to be on the same page, when it comes to putting up a big show. He understood where I was coming from, and I understood what he wanted.”
Speaking about the collection, Riddhima who is looking forward to representing India through her designs at London Fashion Week says, “The collection will showcase contemporary as well as traditional pieces. There are heirloom pieces that we have curated for the show as well. We believe that time doesn’t age our designs. So, it can be worn generation after generation. We are working with natural diamonds, precious and semi-precious coloured stones, and few diamond polki traditional bridal jewellery. It is a mix of everything that symbolises India and its craftsmanship.”
The showcase also marks her international runway debut, where Riddhima will be seen opening the show. She also shares that she might even close the show, since she has two looks picked out for her. “I am really excited. Not nervous, but anxious. This [walking the ramp] is something I have done before in India. I have walked for Abu Jani Sandeep Khosla in Delhi, but internationally I haven’t,” she adds.
Unlike India where showstoppers walking for designers at fashion weeks are a norm, internationally it isn’t a trend. Recalling her meeting with Anthony and discussing Indian fashion shows, Riddhima says, “We had started talking when bridal couture week had just wrapped up in New Delhi. I was telling him; in India we always have a showstopper. So, jokingly I asked him, am I your showstopper? To which he said, ‘we don’t have a showstopper culture here, but it’s different’. Yes, London Fashion Week is very different from what we have in India here. However, I am extremely proud of my shows in India.”
Jewellery at fashion weeks are essentially used to enhance the ensemble. Do you believe jewellery can be a showstopper too? “I think absolutely. Design speaks for itself. Whether it is Anthony’s creations or our jewellery. I hope both are showstoppers on their own. I really hope that both coming together creates something impactful and beautiful on the ramp,” expresses Riddhima.
Riddhima Kapoor Sahni X Helen Anthony runway show will be held on September 19 at 8 pm (EST).
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