Tote it with Michael
Avantika Bhuyan takes fashion designer Deepika Govind to review the collection at Michael Kors' recently launched store in India.
Say Michael Kors and you think of Project Runway, the Emmy-nominated reality television programme that he ruled as a judge for 10 seasons. His name also evokes images of clean lines and simple, unpretentious designs. Until recently, one had to visit his stores in Dubai or New York to get one’s hands on his signature totes or delicious slouchy pants. But now you can buy it all at Kors' first, and only store so far, at Delhi’s DLF Emporio mall.
"I have picked up Michael Kors jumpsuits and apparel from stores in Dubai and elsewhere, but never accessories," says designer Deepika Govind as we enter the store that spans 1,500 sq ft and has countless shelves lined with bags, watches, shoes and ready-to-wear apparel. You can’t miss the store. Hints of fuchsia beckon you tantalisingly as soon as you enter Emporio and cross the fountain.
"Signature tones of fuchsia, summer blue and tan dominate the collection," says one of the store assistants. The afternoon sun beats down mercilessly outside, but in the cool environs of the store a steady trickle of customers keeps pouring in. "I think that our Indian customers are extremely sophisticated and will appreciate the glamour, luxury and versatility they find in the store," Kors had said during the launch, and clearly he was right.
Image: A model walks the runway at the Michael Kors fashion show during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Fall 2014 at Spring Studios in New York City.
Photographs: Neilson Barnard/Getty Images for Michael Kors
The ambience of the store reflects Kors’ ethos of minimalism and elegance. As soon as one enters, a camel coloured bag crafted from French casket leather, bonded with suede catches the eye.
“The leather is so soft that the structure of the bag immediately becomes clear,” says Govind. We are informed that this is a limited edition piece, priced at Rs 1,07,000.
Govind, who pronounces herself to be a completely “tote person”, flutters from shelf to shelf checking out designs. The smaller sizes cost Rs 19,000, the medium ones Rs 25,000 and the large sizes cost Rs 29,000.
The range of colours in the bags surprise Govind. “I am very surprised to see the use of green in the bags. It’s not part of his signature palette. But the summer blue is very beautiful. This is the new popular colour, it’s being used a lot in furniture as well,” she says. But she gives the bright-hued bags a miss and fixes her attention on the black-and-white tote. “Now that’s beautiful,” she says.
Image: A model presents a creation from the Michael Kors Fall 2009 collection during New York Fashion Week,.
Photographs: Eric Thayer/ Reuters
Deepika with her muses
An orange maxi catches her eye. With a beautiful silhouette, it has a fluidity to it. It can simply take the contours of the wearer. The black trousers (priced at Rs 13,500) too are simple and chic.
"It's so difficult these days to find simple black trousers," says Govind, who likes to pick up clothes and accessories for the luxury of the experience rather than to just flaunt a brand.
Her wardrobe boasts of Armani, which she loves for the silhouette and style, Missoni for its colour and knits, Ferragamo and Jimmy Choo shoes for the sheer comfort and range.
Image: Deepika Govind, centre, with her models during her show at Lakme Fashion Week Winter/ Festive 2012 in Mumbai.
Photographs: Uttam Ghosh/ Rediff.com
Michael Kors clothes are clean, simple and very wearable,” she says. In an interview to Women’s Wear Daily Kors had explained his style ethos: “Ultimately, clean lines have greater longevity, which women appreciate, and to which they can add their own personality. And if you’re busy, it kind of cleans the palate and lets you get on with your life.”
With prices ranging from Rs 9,500 for ballerinas, Rs 29,000 for large size totes and Rs 32,500 for dresses, “the collection is very well priced,” says Govind, “I would come back any day for the black trousers and the camel skin bag.”
John Lobb, the Hermès group’s luxury shoe brand for men, will soon be making its foray into India, through a tie-up with Regalia Luxury for its retail, "by request" and bespoke services. Though the boutiques will open only later, the "by request" service will be available from June this year.
Pratik Dalmia, founder at Regalia Luxury, says that the service will work according to the convenience of the customer. It will be appointment-based, where John Lobb’s staff will meet the customer either at his residence or a luxury hotel.
The service allows you to customise the existing models of John Lobb shoes in terms of width, colour, sole and type of leather, though the basic size of the shoe remains fixed.
The customisation, which takes place at John Lobb's Northampton workshop in England, can take up to 14 weeks. This is different from the bespoke, made-to-measure service, which can take up to six months to create a final product. It will be available in India by the end of this year.
While John Lobb's over-the-counter and "by request" shoes range between Rs 45,000 and Rs 7,00,000, the bespoke variants are priced between Rs 4-14 lakh.
Image: Miranda Kerr wore this cut-away Michael Kors creation at the Costume Institute Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, in 2013.
Photographs: Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images