Payal Singhal is no stranger to collaborations. Over the past few years, the Mumbai-based designer has worked with Paio (footwear), Joey & Pooh (headbands), Ranavat Botanics (beauty) and Marshalls (wallpaper), and created capsule collections for The Label Life and Wella. Her latest endeavour is with fashion brand Indya, which launched on February 1.
Stating that all collaborations are essentially similar, the designer says that for this one, they started from scratch. “We understood the customer profile and then put together PS Bestsellers in our signature colours and embellishments,” she says. Tanvi Malik, co-founder of Indya adds that both brands were very clear that the collection “should be Payal’s signature [contemporary Indian clothing] translated into a commercial and affordable line that appeals to the millennial Indian woman”. Working backwards from there was easy.
While they were aesthetically on the same page and didn’t have to compromise in terms of design, Singhal admits, “We did have to work with completely different kinds of budgets for fabrics and embellishments, but that was actually a great learning process.”
- The fashion brand also recently launched a skincare line. Malik points out that the Indian market mostly has Ayurvedic brands (frontrunners in the segment) or luxury clinical brands that aren’t accessible to the masses. “We identified the gap to bring in a homegrown brand. We’ve combined powerhouse Indian ingredients like haldi, mulethi and manjishtha with effective lab ingredients like hyaluronic acid, retinol and niacinamide.”
- The five ranges are Glow (for dull and tired complexion), Clear (for acne-prone skin), Dew (for ultra-hydration), Reverse (anti-ageing) and Roots (overall skin wellness). “I’m most excited about the moisturisers that contain Vitamin E and C and other active ingredients. The Luxe Gold Oil infused with 24kt gold particles is another personal favourite. The overnight sleep mask from the Dew range is a hit with us and customers alike,” she says.
- Apart from other collaborations and brand extensions, they will also be expanding the skincare range. And since retail expansion took a back seat in 2020, they aim to make up for it by taking their number of exclusive brand stores up from 33 to 45.
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This summer-festive line features separates like drop crotch pants, shararas, draped and crop tops, and jackets as well as pants and skirts with attached dupattas, asymmetric tunics and dressy jumpsuits. Georgettes, mesh and art silk with touches of velvet come in a sorbet palette of vintage blush pink, mint, powder blue and grey, with pops of lemon yellow and navy. “In terms of techniques, you’ll see bold floral digital prints, mukaish embellishments, zari embroidery and playful fringes, tassels and mirror work that are ubiquitous in Payal’s signature lines,” explains Malik. Like many other launches, this one too was delayed by the pandemic, but Singhal remains unperturbed. “It was designed for small, intimate events anyway, and now it just fits,” she smiles.
Malik says that while there is pent-up demand for Indian and occasion wear owing to the pandemic, there is a shift in how people are shopping. Going by their data and customer profiles, she says, “They have the purchasing power but are looking for value in their purchases with clothes that are classic and not particularly trend-led. They’re also looking for utility and versatility.”
Singhal was one of the few Indian designers who was already well-versed in the e-commerce space, having had a retail website since 2013. However, she finds that customers still want to communicate before placing their orders. “Very few will convert directly without any conversation with our customer service team,” she explains. During the pandemic, the brand spent a lot of time working on the back-end and tech side of the site to enhance the customer experience. “We also added new product lines, gift cards and a pret line. We have lots of plans and projects in the pipeline — definitely in the accessories, beauty and home décor space,” she concludes.
From ₹1,200 to ₹4,950 on houseofindya.com