Documentaries, travel shows, try to capture the beauty of a place the best they can, but nothing beats the joy of experiencing a country in real life. After 3 years of being bound and unable to travel, I had the pleasure to visit India and work alongside my team in the heartiest country. Journey to India was more soulful. It reconnected me to parts that I didn’t know were missing. A magical trip filled with new experiences, wonderful people and mesmerising sights.
I was delighted to explore the textile market across Delhi with my fabulous textile designer Fatima, who was kind enough to travel to meet me. Being in the heart of fabric design, she came down from Udaipur, bringing the dreamy spirit of the city of lakes to our creative process. It was a treat for all our senses. A visual delight to see the varied colours - no shade was like the other, and our passion for fabrics doubled as we got to touch and feel their varying textures, inheriting countless ideas for our future collections.
This was an experience like no other, and one that we both appreciated after spending years struggling to share ideas over a screen. We were beaming with endless opportunities, as we learned more about new weaving techniques and marvelled at the infinite sources of inspiration that lie even in the most mundane corners of India. To physically work with my team side by side and discuss new ideas to enhance the beauty of our clothing and to see the whole process come to life from pattern making and creating samples together felt like such a team effort. The strongest of connections, we came together to keep the Sahana dream alive and we all felt rejuvenated and inspired. And for this, I am ever so grateful.
From Delhi, one of the things on my itinerary was a visit to Agra to see the Taj Mahal. What a privilege it was. Seeing it in real life literally took my breath away. Several minutes fell short to take in the arhitectural prodigy that the Taj Mahal is, bringing tears to my eyes. Little did I think that a piece of stone can make me emotional, but it is something one has to experience deep in their hearts. There was something in the way it was built, the sincerity and love shines out and casts the most romantic light on it, making it look heavenly. I could spend hours staring at it - we caught it in the hours of dawn and the marble against the mighty blue sky looked like it was picked right out of a fairytale.
One of the highlights in India was the delicious food - it was a cultural kingdom of rich curries, creamy sweets, artisanal breads and homemade chutneys. India boasts an explosion of flavours all around. I had idli and dosa for breakfast every morning and I couldn’t stop. Every plateful of food in India is served with love. It was truly the little things!
India felt like home. Partially because my sister joined me in my journey, and it was one of the most heartwarming feelings to physically see a family member after 3 years. Often, we underestimate the charm of human touch - a simple hug goes miles further than a thousand video calls. It’s the unspoken beauty of just being physically present. It was a refreshing experience, and one that I will cherish forever. From this trip, I come back reenergized to design and hope to bring in collections of beautiful clothing that speak volume for the beauty and skill that runs through Indian soil.