Sukiran Singh Amritsari, the talented UK-based emerging designer of Amritsari, is the perfect example of how travels can enrich one’s experience and inspirations. Travel has inspired him to jump to a new challenge, from fashion management and manufacturing to designing and launching his own label. Combining beautiful prints, embroidery and rich-colored fabrics with modern silhouettes, Sukiran creates a collection that carries a strong heritage with playful twists. It’s like a tale from two (or perhaps more) different worlds, and I can’t pinpoint exactly where they are coming from. Is it telling us an Indian folktale with a hint Spanish culture? Or is it an Indian story inspired by Mexican arts? Whatever it is, they are so beautiful and rich that they make Mialita Venus King, our model, feel and look like a queen.
Englave: Where is the brand based?
Sukiran: The brand is based in London, but since I am a globetrotter, the materials and inspirations are from all over the world.
Englave: In addition to designing for your own brand, you also work to provide support for fashion designers. Can you please elaborate the latter part? How have the two world influenced each other?
Sukiran: Our parent company, Afdabil, help emerging designers and brands with fashion management and cost effective manufacturing services, which is very important in earlier stages. I have been helping new designers for quite some time when suddenly I decided why not have my own label. Hence Amritsari came into existence in late 2013. With my experience in fashion management and commerce, I will try to come up with ideas that are sellable, wearable and yet have an artistic endeavour.
Englave: How would you describe your brand in 3 words?
Sukiran: Folk, feminine, and History
Englave: Your brand seems to portray Indian history with a modern twist. Is history really a big part of your inspiration?
Sukiran: Yes. History is the major element for colors, prints, fabrics and general architecture of silhouettes. My inspiration comes not only from Indian history, but from a lot of other places as well.
Englave: Describe your ideal customers
Sukiran: My Ideal customer would be one who likes timeless fashion, not a trend worshiper.
Englave: Do you think you will ever branch out to designing accessories like handbags or shoes?
Sukiran: Yes, of course. For the current collection, we designed beautiful gold and leather belts with our brand emblem, which we hope to be our identity. We have also designed a capsule collection of shoes, and plan to launch a full leather goods collection of shoes and handbags next year. Nowadays, a label should be able to offer variety in its cohesive range, so we are keeping plans in mind.
Englave: What is the biggest challenge that you face as as an emerging designer?
Sukiran: The manufacturing part is quite easy for us since our parent company has a large network of manufacturers worldwide. The biggest challenge for us is getting brand recognition and buyers’ attention. Even if you have contacts, buyers in general prefer to buy from only developed brands, or they want to see consistency for several seasons before making decision. So, the early years are tough. We do have our fingers crossed, and I thank you for your initiative to build Englave to help emerging designers.
Englave: Where can we purchase your collection?
Sukiran: The current collection will be available on our e-shop by the end of March. Hopefully it will be available at other outlets soon, please keep an eye on our Facebook page for more info.