4 Things to Consider While Wedding Planning During COVID-19


The following post is brought to you by LUKH — an online rental service committed to giving everyone an equal opportunity to participate in our culture through fashion.

It’s Saturday morning and instead of grabbing Mimosas poolside with the girls dressed in matching “Bride Tribe” robes, I’m yet again in “sweatpants, hair tied, chilling with no make-up on.” I can’t help but be bummed at the thought that this weekend was supposed to be my intended sister-in-law’s bachelorette party, but due to the pandemic, our plans have drastically changed. 

As a maid of honor, I can only imagine what my brother and sister-in-law are going through emotionally as they reschedule their nuptial celebrations. They met when they were in the military and have been engaged since 2015. They were finally going to tie the knot on April 25, 2020, but due to the pandemic they have decided to postpone their wedding.

I know that planning a wedding is stressful enough, and adding a global pandemic makes matters much more complicated. If you’re feeling frustrated by the lack of control you have in the situation, and find yourself struggling with wedding planning (or replanning…) while in quarantine, this article might be your ‘saving grace.’

Brown Girl Magazine has taken time to speak with online South Asian clothing rental service LUKH, bride-to-be Priya Mukhopadhyay and Sofia Charania, and wedding planner Rupal Patel of Malenia Events. We have come up with a few tips and tricks to help you navigate access to South Asian fashion, guest communications, vendor management, and decor/color scheme for your nuptial engagements during COVID-19. So put down the quarantine snacks, pick up your journal, and get ready to take the power back for your big day!

 Access to Indian Fashion

With heightened travel and shipping restrictions around the world, we’ve heard that it’s been difficult to shop for wedding outfits for brides, bridesmaids, and wedding guests.  If you’re concerned about a current order being delayed after alterations, you’ll want to check in with your designer to see what their COVID-19 policies are.

Priya Mukhopadhyay, a bride and physician based in New York City, was supposed to travel to India this March to purchase her wedding attire. 

She said,  “[When] I got the news that India wouldn’t allow any traveling visas. I cried and cried for a day and then I packed up all those emotions and took myself to work. Being in the hospital first hand I get the immensity of this crisis, I am also devoting myself to it. On the other hand, I am a 2020 bride and this was supposed to be MY year, the disappointment lingers and planning is paused, but I am hopeful and excited to make use of all the amazing South Asian brands available to me here in the states.” 

If you find yourself in a similar situation to Priya, and are struggling to find the perfect outfit for yourself, bridesmaids, and have wedding guests who are in need of fashionable advice, do what Priya did and browse LUKH

LUKH is an online rental service dedicated to helping brides, bridal parties, and wedding guests look and feel confident at any Indian wedding or event. They are the perfect fit for any bride or guest who wants a fusion, minimal, and modern design that exudes luxury.  

To help make the process of finding the perfect outfit easier, LUKH is offering virtual consultations any day of the week. If you share your mood boards or preferred color/style preferences, LUKH will present you with a personalized selection of gorgeous, chic, and fashion-forward options from their virtual showroom.

Pictured: Vandana Iyer in New York City, wearing the LUKH Shakti Sharara.
Pictured: Sabrina Molu in Atlanta, wearing the LUKH Taara Lengha.

Co-founders Karen Desai, Kinney Sheth and Rajul Parekh want every bride and groom to know they have a well-stocked inventory of outfits for yourself, your bridal party, and wedding guests.

LUKH co-founders Kinney Sheth, Karen Desai and Rajul Parekh.

As for your guests, we know you would hate to see your favorite aunty in a velvet long sleeve sari at a summer wedding or your favorite cousins dressed in a light spring lengha in subzero temperatures now that your spring wedding is rescheduled to the winter.

LUKH’s seasoned stylists recommend the following outfits for their wedding guests: 

1. The Bindaas Anarkali is bright, bold and perfect for a mendhi or sangeet. 


2. The Roshni Lengha is versatile and the perfect pop of color for a wedding ceremony any time of the year.


3. The Tamarind Lengha is a look that is always fresh for a reception and can be jazzed up or down with accessories.

All of their handcrafted clothes have adjustable features built into them that allow you to loosen or tighten the fit according to your body shape, eliminating the need for alterations. For example, a size XS/S can fit a woman between a size 00 to size 4. What’s even more amazing is that their styles can be rented at affordable prices;  starting at $75.00 for a 4-day rental. 

LUKH is more than an online service, they have fashionable solutions and resources ready to help ease some of the anxiety and stress you and your guests are facing. To set up a virtual consultation, you can book an appointment here

Guest Communications

With all the uncertainty you and your partner are facing in regards to travel restrictions and physical distancing, it can feel like you are caught in wedding limbo. For instance, deciding whether you want to postpone your wedding or follow through with the date you have already booked is a huge decision.  

Bride and medical student Sofia Charania shared her current thoughts on this situation.

“My fiance is from Bombay, and his entire family still lives there, so our biggest concern right now is whether travel restrictions will prevent them from coming to New York this August, as well as whether or not it will be safe for them to make the trip even if it is allowed. We have accepted that we may have to push the wedding, and we have communicated that with each of our guests, but the most challenging part is that we don’t have a definitive plan yet.” 

The faster you communicate with your guests regarding the status of your wedding, the easier it will be for them to make arrangements accordingly. If you have family and friends traveling from out of state or the country have them contact their travel agent or the airline they purchased their tickets from as soon as possible. From our research, we have gathered that most airlines are helpful and will give credit or full refund, while some third-party sites may only offer a credit. If you or your loved ones decide to get credit, be sure to ask your airline if the credit that is being issued has an expiration date before accepting the offer.  

If you and your partner are not sure about rescheduling your wedding, you should communicate to your guests that the postponement of your wedding due to COVID-19 is still a possibility.  Try to be as detailed and transparent as you possibly can when having these conversations. Don’t forget to acknowledge how grateful you are for your guests making the necessary arrangements to celebrate with you. 

Your wedding website is the best place to keep everyone up to date on your wedding plans during the COVID crisis. Whether you’re considering rescheduling or not, be sure to keep it up to date. Once you know that you’re officially postponing it, the best thing to do is call your guests and send them an email. Don’t feel like you need to do this alone – ask your parents, fiance, or immediate family members for help with calling relatives and friends if needed. If you would like to follow up with formal communication, work with a graphic designer or Canva to create a customized postponement announcement that matches your invitation. You can send the postponement announcements with the new date via mail,  e-mail, or simply upload it to your wedding website!

Vendor Management 

Regardless if you postpone your wedding or not, it’s important to get in touch with your vendors as soon as possible. You’ll want to contact your venue first to find out what dates they have available, or if they will be open for the date your wedding is currently booked. If you have decided to reschedule, ask the venue to place a soft hold on your top three selections of the new dates they presented you with. Then check in with your must-have family members and wedding party to confirm which date works best for them.  

To keep things organized and easy to manage, try creating a list of all your vendors or potential vendors from the highest level of importance to the lowest. If you have a wedding planner, they should be able to assist you with contacting them. If you don’t have a wedding planner, and find yourself overwhelmed, don’t be afraid to ask your bridal party, and immediate family to assist you with some of these tasks.

It’s important to keep an open mind when working with your vendors if you are rescheduling your wedding. You may need to be open to another day of the week or a later date, as many vendors have already filled their availability for the rest of 2020. 

Remember to have written communication via email or text with vendors when (re)negotiating any contracts. This can be an overwhelming time for everyone involved, and details concerning (re)negotiations can be forgotten or misconstrued later on. Make sure you amend your contracts or create new ones that reflect your new wedding date and details. Luckily, a lot of vendors are willing to reschedule as long as they have availability. However, if they are already booked,  ask for a refund for any security deposits you have paid. It is not guaranteed that they will comply, but it’s definitely worth a try! 

Decor & Color Scheme 

If you are planning or replanning your wedding for another season, consider how your decor and color scheme (color palette) can complement it.

According to expert wedding planner Rupal Patel of Malenia Events, “Some people say changing color palettes from one season to another can be extremely difficult, but it doesn’t have to be. Your wedding vision does not need to change at all if you don’t want it to. You can always take your current palette and enhance it…”

She continues, “If you look at the fall and winter palettes here, you’ll notice some pastel tones that are similar to spring colors. You could add in an accent color to your neutral color palette to deepen it.

Spring and Summer brides tend to lean towards the blush, ivory, gold color palette or fuschia/purple with gold accents.”

For those postponing weddings from spring/summer to fall/winter, Rupal suggests:

“Take your current palette and enhance it to fit into more of a fall/winter theme. Use your original color palette and then deepen the [color of] florals and lighting. If you tend to have more of a neutral palette, add a bold pop of color, like black or a jewel tone. Consider bringing in gold accents through mercury candles, geometric shapes, and glassware. Always keep this in mind: all color palettes are acceptable all year round.” 

If your bridesmaids have not purchased their wedding attire, choose a color for their outfits that complements your color scheme. For example, if you want to stick with a neutral or pastel color palette,  consider pastels like blush pink or the mint green for your wedding party. LUKH’s pastel ‘Chamak Lengha’ is both elegant and whimsical. It is the perfect addition to a neutral color scheme. 

LUKH[Chamak Lengha by LUKH]

If you want to add a pop of color to your existing neutral palette,  have your bridal party wear a bold color like magenta or fuschia, and include gold accents. The Rani Kaftan is a perfect example. 


 [Rani Kaftan by LUKH]

Interested in a fall or winter color scheme?  Consider having your wedding party wear jewel tones like the gorgeous emerald green Nakhra Lengha.


 [Nakhra Lengha by LUKH]

If you are still having trouble deciding how to incorporate your color scheme, don’t worry. These details take time to confirm. Try talking to your wedding planner or use Pinterest to solidify your wedding’s aesthetic and help you bring your vision to fruition. 

While you navigate the nuance of your wedding outfits, guest communications, vendor management, and decor/color scheme, remember to take time to lean on your family and friends, wedding planner, vendors, and your partner as you make decisions about what to do next.  Give yourself permission to express all the emotions you are feeling, and to find the silver lining in this situation. If you are in the middle of replanning your wedding, I hope you find solace knowing that your guests are grateful for giving their well-being priority. As time moves on and your wedding date gets closer, the world will continue to heal, and sooner rather than later you will be in front of your loved ones celebrating your special day! 

By Seshmila Jay

Seshmila Jay is a creative with a passion for music, film, fashion, and wellness. She is the epitome of sugar, … Read more ›

Meet Fashion Blogger and Media Star Dolly Singh

Dolly Singh
Dolly Singh

Dolly Singh is a content creator who is from South Delhi. She earned a bachelor’s in political science from Delhi University. Singh then attended The National Institute of Fashion and Technology. She even had her own blog called “Spill the Sass.” Fashion is a true passion for Singh as she made her outfit of the day debut on Netflix’s Bhaag Beanie Bhaagon. She has even appeared on Modern Love Mumbai Edition! Singh was awarded Cosmopolitan Blogger Award in 2021 and IWM Social Media Star in 2022. Continue to learn more about Dolly Singh’s journey!

[Read Related: Fashion Influencer Ritvi Shah on how to Nail Content Creation]


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What parts of your childhood pushed you into the world of content creation?

I have always been an introverted-extrovert kind of person. During my early teens I wouldn’t speak much at home but in school I was quite the talkative showgirl. When I look back it seems so paradoxical, almost as if I suffer from a split personality. Somehow my earliest childhood memories are of my loving to be on stage. I remember when I was in the 12th grade, I cajoled my teacher to include me in a singing competition since I had never ever sung live on stage and I was persistent in my effort for over 4-5 years and eventually she gave up and she said ‘okay its your last year why don’t you go do it ‘and of course in the process I realized what a bad singer I was. But just the sheer joy of being on stage, performing to a live audience and entertaining people is what stirred me at a deeper level. I think on the other hand my reserved side allows me to study people and their nuances and store all those observations in my memory data bank which helps me create great content. I wouldn’t speak much at home, but you know when I did, it was just 2 punch lines and everybody would either laugh or get awkward. I think I always knew that I was born to entertain, and it was my destiny’s calling. I would always get jealous seeing child actors on newspapers and television and I was like ‘oh my God, I am a child, and I could be an actor, living my dream life but I’m still stuck here’.

Do you feel what you do can inspire and impact the world? Please elaborate.

Of course, I think anybody with a decent following on social media has the potential to positively impact the community. Content creators enjoy a certain reach and it’s so important to handle that responsibility meticulously and the kind of message that you’re putting out needs to be respectful of certain socially expected parameters and mindful of the basic laws of the universe. It’s better to say nothing, then to say something stupid something that is going to just bring out the worst in people or send out misleading signals. I feel like the amount of content that audiences are consuming these days can trigger positive change if it’s done in the right manner. I feel strongly about a lot of topics, and I make sure that my platform is a reflection of that in some way. With content creators as opposed to film stars and celebrities, there is a direct engagement with audiences and a more one-on-one connection and hence content creators stand at a more leveraged position to influence audiences positively. I love body positivity as a topic.

Who were your fashion icons growing up?

Any fashion events that you envisage yourself at in the future to represent the brown renaissance? I think a lot of my inspiration came from the indie pop movement of the 1900s and the 2000’s. I started watching Hollywood movies and a lot of my inspiration started coming from the Bollywood Hollywood section in glossies and I made cutouts of the media, the models, the people. Then came Disney Channel and FTV and I used to watch those when my mom was away at work. I would love to represent India at the Paris, New York and London runways and walk for Indian designers who are using sustainable fabrics and indigenous designs and helping skilled artisans make a living in India. I love Madhu Sapre, Naomi Campbell, Tyra Banks, Cindy Crawford.

As you started a style blog in college, what were some of your favorite pieces of clothing in your early years?

Yeah, it was called Spill The Sass. I love blogging on T-shirts because there are so many ways that you could style a basic white T-shirt. Another blog I enjoyed back in the day was 5 ways to style maxi skirts. If I had to choose two pieces of clothing it would be a T-shirt and jeans!

How has your style evolved over the years?

It’s evolved from minimalistic and pocket friendly to being experimental and qualitative. The more I visited fashion weeks and events, the greater I experimented with outfit ideas that I curated personally. Over the years, I’ve started leaning more towards keeping it classy, chic and comfortable.

Tell us about your favorite online character since you make a bunch of them?

My favorite online character of mine would be Raju Ki Mummy because it’s based on my own mother.

If you could collaborate with anyone in the world, who would it be and why?

I would love to collaborate with Jenna Marbles. I love her to death. I discovered her few years ago and I would love to meet her in person. I mean she’s just a person who if I meet, I will just start sobbing like a child.

[Read Related: Malvika Sitlani on Content Creation, Entrepreneurship and Womanhood]


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A post shared by Dolly Singh (@dollysingh)

Have you faced adversity in your field? How have you risen from it?

Adversities are just an everyday fact of life but I like to believe my dreams and goals are bigger than my fears and setbacks. I know at the end of the day I want to be something; I want to give back and quitting isn’t the solution. Every time I face a creative block, I just tell myself this ‘get up and get to work, there are many who look up to you, you can’t disappoint them’. Also, the support from family, friends is nothing less than therapeutic especially when you’re having that typical bad day. I run towards therapy when I hit rock bottom, which happens quite often. We often feel burnt out, exhausted, tired, and just sad. I’ve been taking therapy for the last two years. It’s been beneficial. I’m not saying all my problems have vanished; that’s not how it works. It’s a continuous journey and a continuous process, but I think therapy is my mantra.

You recently turned into an entrepreneur with your own line of candles. Tell us more on what drove this decision and are there any other lifestyle products you will be launching?

As a creator I think it’s just natural to want to extend your brand trajectory to newer realms and not be stagnant in your growth path. It’s hard to gauge the shelf life of any creator considering there is stiff competition and there will be a sense of redundancy that seeps into the algorithm at some point. It’s always beneficial to expand your forte and explore multiple revenue streams is what I’ve gathered from so many interactions I’ve had with my industry peers over the past few years. There were many opportunities where people wanted to create merchandise of mine or partner on a fashion and accessory line but I wasn’t very mentally ready given my hectic schedules. I was a customer of Rad Living and after the pandemic I went into this zone of binge buying so much self-care stuff and you know candles was one of them. So when this came about I think I was ready to experiment and expand and was looking for an avenue to invest my energies on something enjoyable. I had already made a content piece on candles before this offer came my way so I had a list of quirky candle names, taglines for fragrances, matching the fragrance notes with the names. I think with this inning the whole ‘Creator’ part to me really came to use here as well and that’s what was exciting about this and it was funny because it was such ‘a life comes to a full circle’ moment for me. My mom was into candle making because Nainital at that point was known for its candles and she used to make such variety of candles, 100s of types of candles and all my life I mean the first 16-17 years of my life I’ve just seen my mom make candles at home and our house were full of wax and everything was just candles. My father used to sell candles and it was my family business. Let’s just say that I’m taking forward the family legacy and I’m very excited to go home and to my father’s shop in Nainital and put my candles there and sell them!

Will there be any lifestyle products you’ll be launching?

I was so nervous about this candle launch as I never wanted to mislead my audiences and have them indulge in something that’s mediocre. I really invested my heart and soul in this venture, and thankfully the response has been beyond phenomenal. Courtesy all the good word of mouth publicity, I’m thinking of maybe launching my own beauty and fashion line in about 2 years!

What have been your favorite content pieces that have you worked on this far?

I love most of my content pieces as I’m very particular about each one of them so it’s hard to pick a favorite. One of them is a mini film called Aunty Prem Hai and it’s about an orthodox lady finding out that her nephew is queer from his ex-boyfriend, and this is a first time reveal since the nephew has never come out of the closet. There’s also this series called How Aunties Talk About Sex, and I’ve given a twist to how old-timer desi Indians broach the topic of sex based on how I’ve seen my mother interact with her friends, post dinner conversations amongst relatives, and how it’s more like a taboo.

What are your favorite social media trends?

Anything that emits positivity and gratitude. It’s important that social media trends invoke a sense of intellectual enhancement. Anything that kind of teaches you something that enriches your existence or makes you want to live life more wholesomely. I also enjoy throwback trends, something to do with special memories and nostalgia, because I feel old school is always timeless.

Do you feel people are so trapped in social media that they forget about the world around them outside of their laptops, phones, and tablets?

Yes. Personally it’s been a task for me to get detached from technology and balance the real and the reel. In the last couple of years, I have consciously cut down on my screen time, even though it’s all work and no play for me. Social media is so omnipresent and it’s sometimes scary to see this crazy social media obsession where people forget there’s a real world out there with real people and you need to forge real connections that are deeply rooted in authentic exchanges. It’s scarier to see how social media trends have now become rules to live by for a more meaningful existence for many when on the contrary that shouldn’t be the case.

[Read Related: Filmi Nights: A Love Letter to Vintage Bollywood]

How do you feel about the term content creator?

It’s a word that invokes a sense of pride in me because for me it’s all about being innovative, authentic and self-made. Influencer on the other hand is something that doesn’t resonate with me because there’s no real job description. I’ve always maintained my stand of not being an influencer as I create content and make a living out of being creative and curating an audience for myself over the years.

As you’ve worked with Priyanka Chopra, Kareena Kapoor Khan, Aayushmann Khurrana, and others do you hope to be more involved in Bollywood? Tell us about your acting projects.

Of course, I would love to be more involved in the film industry not just in India but globally too. I think there is so much scope for the South Asian community to make a mark in world cinema and it’s time we pick up more Oscars and Grammy’s in the coming times. Anyone who is a creator is also a film star at heart. 90% of creators who make sketches and skits are facing the camera 24×7, making original content, improvising on scripts and all of that stems from that innate ability to be great performers who can keep an audience engaged. I would love to someday have my own podcast where I interview film personalities and get into their skin. I love the dance and song sequences in Bollywood films, and I think I’d be great doing that as well! I’d love to see how I can get out of my comfort zone and do something that doesn’t directly relate to my online alias in the future. I got a lot of offers during the lockdown and shot for a film in 2022 which sees me in a leading role and I’m excited for it to launch later this year. I’m working on some writing projects as I would love to script a documentary or a short film.

Lastly, what do you hope to take away from this interview with Brown Girl Magazine?

I think the questions have been great. The questions have been answered in a way that I feel so confident about myself right now, and I feel so proud about myself and that says a lot. I would like to thank Brown Girl Magazine for taking time out to interview me. I hope this inspires the brown community across the world!

Photo Courtesy of Dolly Singh

By Brown Girl Magazine

Born out of the lack of minority representation in mainstream media, Brown Girl Magazine was created by and for South … Read more ›

Hand Embroidery: South Asia’s Not-so-Famous Contribution to Global Fashion

hand embroidery

South Asian fashion is nearly always associated with color, glitz, and ornate designs. From embellished bridal wear, weighing as much as the bride herself, to brightly colored sarees, Indian craft and hand embroidery is hard to miss — except when it’s showing up in non-Indian clothing.

Did you know that Jennifer Lopez’s famous green, jungle-print Versace dress from the 2000 Grammy Awards was hand-embroidered in India? Or that top luxury brands, including Gucci, Dior, and Saint Laurent, have quietly outsourced much of their embroidery to South Asia for over three decades now? As brands cross borders to connect and innovate through fashion, South Asia has come to the forefront of global fashion as the go-to region for hand embroidery. In 2019, India’s embroidery exports exceeded $230 million, which was a 500 percent increase from the 1990s. This isn’t simply because of the affordable labor and extra cushion for the bottom line — it’s a testament to the unmatched skill of South Asian artisans.

[Read Related: Honouring Tradition and Embracing my Heritage Through Ethnic Wear]

South Asian artisans, also known as ‘karigars,’ are the unnamed force behind a designer’s vision. They often reside in rural parts of the Subcontinent and have gathered skill, creativity, and knowledge over generations. During my travels this year, for the launch of my fashion brand Chaa Latte, I witnessed artisans train from as young as seven years old, mastering embroidery techniques by the time they’re in their teens. Crouched over a table in a dimly-lit room, these artisans work tirelessly to adorn yards of fabric with beautiful beads and sequins, or weave glistening gold yarn into silk and cotton with sometimes nothing more than their memory to guide the motif. Some of them have little to no education and have never stepped outside of their village. Yet, hand them thread and a needle and they are among the best embroiderers in the world.


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Is Indian hand embroidery as prolific as French lace? I would argue yes, and maybe even more, but without the fame. Established brands and their collections have stood on the craft of these rural artisans for decades but have rarely given credit. Only few Western designers, such as Dries Van Noten and Isabel Marant, proudly celebrate their relationship with Indian craftspeople. Perhaps because of this nearly silent partnership, a label that says “Made in India” or “Made in Bangladesh” does not equate to beautiful, luxurious work — rather, the complete opposite. Fast fashion may be one output, but the true strength of South Asia lies in centuries of incredibly intricate, slow, and artisanal processes.

In a Times of India article, David Abraham of Abraham & Thakore — a well-regarded Indian label — eloquently says that we must recognize the fact that India is one of the very few countries left that can still produce small lot, labor intensive, highly-skilled craft and textiles.

He adds, “And that is the true luxury in a world of growing mass consumerism and an antidote to the very real threats of environmental pollution, global warming and a growing understanding that we need to buy less, pay more for fashion that is more timeless, classic and responsible.”

South Asia’s fashion identity is at a crossroads, and it’s up to designers, especially the younger generation, to build brands that showcase the luxury and painstaking craft of South Asian embroidery, weaving, and the various other hand techniques mastered over centuries. I launched my fashion brand, Chaa Latte, late last year because I believe the true beauty of South Asian fashion is in the subtle, intricate craft and this simply isn’t accessible to North Americans in a way that fits their lifestyle seamlessly. I was set on designing modern pieces for people of all backgrounds, who have a love for art in the form of fashion and have an eye for unique detail.


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My first collection encompasses some of my favorite techniques and textiles from India and Bangladesh, including mirror work and silk handloom sarees. The detailing is balanced with simple silhouettes and a neutral color palette. I am now working on my second collection, which will be released in Spring/Summer of 2023. 

Like me, many young designers are tapping into their unique heritage to draw inspiration and bring attention to the Western world. I had the pleasure of speaking to two fellow South Asian designers who are making a mark on the US fashion industry, while highlighting their love for South Asian craft. When asked about the role of traditional textiles and techniques in their work, Niharika of Tega Collective responds:

With each collection our designs are co-created with a specific indigenous community highlighting their traditional colors, patterns and natural symbols. Every region in the world has incredible biodiversity so we focus on championing native fibers in South Asia like Khadi (indigenous cotton) and Eri (peace) silk originating from Assam, India.

[Read Related: Celebrity Designer Sanjay Garg Gives Us the Inside Scoop on Everything Handlooms and the Sari]

In a separate conversation with designer Sana Khan Patel, from Aara by Sana, she tells us how she was inspired to start her line:

When a family wedding took me back to my hometown of Lahore, Pakistan, after a long 18 years, I was blown away by the level of skill I saw in the gullys (streets) of Lahore. From fabric dyeing to intricate beading to the quality of tailoring, they did it all so effortlessly and with so much pride. I quickly realized that the artisans simply want to create art but unfortunately, in most cases they are overworked, underpaid and treated extremely poorly. I immediately knew that I wanted to work with and learn from these OG’s as much as I wanted to put them in a position of providing for their families.

It’s the hope that this recognition from up-and-coming brands, like Chaa Latte, will shed light into how much South Asia is truly lending to global luxury fashion and the rich history that makes these art forms unique to our countries.


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For more information on Chaa Latte, please visit our website and follow our journey on Instagram.

Feature Image: Hannah Schweiss Photography

By Promiti Prosun

Promiti Prosun is the Bengali Canadian designer and founder of fashion brand, Chaa Latte. Though most of her career was … Read more ›

Tilted Lotus: A Brand Rooted in Culture, Compassion, and Style

Tilted Lotus

When she was young, Preeti Gore, the founder of the clothing brand Tilted Lotus, always looked up to her dad’s “natural sketching” talent. His motivation led her to explore her creative side, whether it was experimenting with art or taking up sitar lessons. Regardless of that fact, she pursued a career in science and became a Physical therapist, following her gut instinct.

[Read Related: Hand Embroidery: South Asia’s Not-so-Famous Contribution to Global Fashion]

Stepping into the world of fashion, alongside being a PT, Gore talks to Brown Girl Magazine about her brand Tilted Lotus in depth.

Why “Tilted Lotus?” What is the significance of the name?

‘Lotus’ symbolizes the national flower of India, my birthplace and the land that has shaped me into the person I am today. It represents the roots from which I originate. On the other hand, ‘Tilted’ signifies the distinctive identity I developed while living in Western countries. With my experiences spanning four different nations — India, the UK, Canada, and the US — I’ve had the privilege of embracing the unique qualities of each culture. This odyssey has enriched my life tremendously, and Tilted Lotus is how I offer this special part of me to a diverse American market.


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How did the transition to the world of textiles and design occur?

Despite never being pressured by my parents, I convinced myself that pursuing a career in science was the ‘right’ path, and thus became a physical therapist. My first job in the US was at Houston Methodist Hospital, located in the prestigious Texas Medical Center. Driven by my passion to help others, I am dedicated to this profession and have no intention of quitting. Relocating to the UK, and Canada, and eventually settling in the US presented numerous challenges, and every time I felt shattered, defeated, or alone, I somehow found the strength to push forward. My parents, despite limited resources, supported my dreams wholeheartedly, encouraging independence and the pursuit of my passions. My husband — who I affectionately call my “Sheldon” (a nod to The Big Bang Theory) — played a pivotal role in persuading me to embrace my creative instincts. I am grateful to have him as both a strong supporter and a staunch feminist.

Two years ago, I took the first step toward launching Tilted Lotus. I enrolled in the entrepreneurship program at The Wharton School and pursued a course on starting a fashion line. I was focused on finding the right supply chain and developing a solid business strategy, but the real test came when I had to work tirelessly in the ICU during the COVID wave, back-to-back nights and days, all at the same time. Through ups and downs, failures, and victories, I finally launched Tilted Lotus in December 2022.

India to the UK…then now to the US! Did the need to stay rooted in your culture strengthen? If so, how did that help you envision Tilted Lotus?

From my childhood days, I’ve held onto my personal values like a compass guiding my way. During my experiences living in different countries, I noticed [I was] slowly losing myself, losing what truly makes me, me. But my love for my culture grew stronger, and I found ways to preserve it. As I wore clothing that reflected my identity and initiated conversations about culture and heritage, I discovered that these markers not only distinguish us but also bring us closer together. People are often eager to learn and experience different cultures, which inspired me to create Tilted Lotus, offering a glimpse of me to others.


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How do you aim to combine South Asian elements with contemporary designs?

The design process for creating an outfit involves a multitude of elements. Our primary objective is to take a traditional Indian art form, put a Tilted Lotus twist on it, and incorporate it into contemporary, everyday silhouettes that are both adaptable and effortless to wear. Our latest collection, Jungle Glam, embodies this unique concept flawlessly.

Who is your target audience? And, how do your pieces help express themselves?

We cater to a diverse and inclusive audience, embracing individuals of all ages, genders, races, and ethnicities. While our current selection includes unisex options, our plans involve expanding more into the realm of unisex clothing. Our aim is for our garments to transcend traditional gender norms, welcoming everyone into our fashion community, regardless of their background.

Our target demographic consists of individuals who revel in dressing eclectically, and fearlessly expressing their unique selves. Our garments become a canvas for personal stories, silently representing who they are. They complement individual styles and can be effortlessly combined with other pieces, adding a touch of boldness and confidence.

One adjective to describe your clothing line:


How do you want people to feel when wearing your clothes?

Our ultimate goal is for them to exude confidence, radiate happiness, and proudly embrace their true selves when they don our clothing. We want them to feel empowered, ready to conquer the world, and unapologetically display their unique style and individuality.


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You mention one of your brand values is compassion. Can you tell us a little about your vision to help your non-profit partner: Three Little Pitties Rescue?

We take great pride in being a strong corporate sponsor for the Three Little Pitties Rescue, an extraordinary non-profit 501c3 organization that goes above and beyond to rescue dogs and cats in dire situations, primarily in the Houston, Texas area. Their unwavering dedication has resulted in the rescue and salvation of over 11,000 animals in recent years, and we are honored to contribute to their cause.

As avid animal lovers, our affiliation with Three Little Pitties Rescue began long before the inception of Tilted Lotus. We have closely collaborated with them, witnessing firsthand their remarkable achievements and tremendous growth over the past few years. Their progress has been fuelled by sheer honesty, selflessness, and unrelenting hard work.
One thing that sets Three Little Pitties Rescue apart is their absolute commitment to ensuring that every donation they receive is put to its intended purpose. They maintain the highest standards of transparency and accountability, ensuring that funds are used solely for the betterment of the rescued animals. There is no room for misuse or misappropriation.

Through our partnership with Three Little Pitties Rescue, we have witnessed the profound impact they have on the lives of animals in need. We are privileged to be part of their journey and contribute to their noble mission. Together, we strive to make a lasting difference and create a better world for our furry friends.


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What can we expect next?

We are set to rock the Runway show at New York Fashion Week this fall with Runway 7 productions at Sony Hall, New York. We will be unveiling an all new collection.

Stylish, sustainable silhouettes with love. Tilted Lotus is synonymous with wearing your culture with pride. With prints that bring you back to traditional Indian art, the collections have pieces that you can wear to your next big event or even pair with your everyday jeans and a tee.

[Read Related:KiRu: The Indian Streetwear Brand Reshaping Fashion’s Gender Rules]

And, after an incredible showcase at Austin Fashion Week, the Slow Fashion Festival, and two successful pop-up events at Renegade Craft and Austin Fashion Week, the team is thrilled about what lies ahead this year! Their calendars are full, and they couldn’t be more grateful to everyone that showered them with love and welcomed them with open arms.

Here are some exciting upcoming events Titled Lotus has planned, and they’d be delighted to have you join them in person!

  • New York Fashion Week: Runway 7, Sony Hall, September 9, New York
  • In Todo Pop-up Shop: November 4-5, Los Angeles, California

You can continue to be part of their journey by following them on their official Instagram account, here.

The featured image is courtesy of Tilted Lotus.

By Shezda Afrin

Shezda Afrin is an aspiring physician from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. At the age of four, it was quite normal of her … Read more ›