Please tell us about yourself
Whether you are a mother of two kids, a working professional lady or a young girl going to college, you would definitely have one section of your wardrobe dedicated to accessories! Earrings, neckpieces, bracelets and bangles…these are just a few things we all love indulging in!
We often complain that Ahmedabad does not have many local accessory labels. That’s why when we spotted “Radhika Agrawal” we literally jumped out of our seats! Her statement neckpieces and vivacious earrings are irresistible! If I had to describe this designer label in just two words, it would be bold and vibrant!
The Ahmedabad Blog chatted with the designer behind this label – Radhika Agarwal about her work and what makes her brand so unique!
The Ahmedabad Blog (TAB): Give us a brief about your background, qualification and work experience. How did you end up in such an offbeat, unconventional and awesome career?
Radhika Agrawal (RA): I have been born and brought up in Ahmedabad. I was always interested in painting and making some crafty stuff since my school days. So after completing my schooling, I was keen on getting into some design school. I had heard about NIFT being one of the best institutes not only in Ahmedabad but also in the country. Even though I wasn’t exactly sure what I wanted to focus on, I did a yearly course from NIFT.
Post this, I went ahead with preparing for the entrance of NIFT for the degree course. I got through my entrance and I chose to do fashion designing. I graduated in the year 2011 and after completing my graduation I took up a job in Mumbai with a designer label called ‘drashta’. I worked there for a year as an Assistant Designer and then returned back to my hometown, Ahmedabad.
TAB: What’s the story behind launching the label “Radhika Agarwal”?
RA: In the year 2006, before I started studying at NIFT, I used to read a lot of craft based books and made some jewelry like earrings. A design house called Evoluzione in Chennai spotted some of my creations and asked me to stock my stuff at their store. For a year I sent them my products but later as I got into NIFT, I wasn’t able to give time for work and studies. Post graduation, before I took up the job in Mumbai, I started making accessories – earrings and neckpieces for friends. When I came back to Ahmedabad my friend asked me to design a neck piece for him and that’s when I thought of taking this ahead as the product line of my label.
TAB: Why did you choose accessories?
RA: I have always wanted to give personal attention to whatever I make because am very particular about every minute detail. Therefore, I personally get involved in making accessories so that every piece comes out the way it was thought and designed. Currently am doing accessories but I have plans to get into the clothing line as well sometime in future.
TAB: What are the challenges faced?
RA: When I shifted back to Ahmedabad, the problem I faced was sourcing the right materials that I was looking for and the right people who would make it for me. Not really knowing the karigars around the city made it very difficult for me to get my pieces made because they would charge me piece wise, which would make the end product very expensive. It was very difficult to explain a client why the accessories were so expensive because Ahmedabad is still growing and there is a very small market of people who understand costume jewelry. Now I have a set of people who have understood what kind of work I want and they embroider as per my designs and need.
TAB: What makes your label so unique?
RA: I have always loved abstraction and juxtaposition where in a lot of things and ideas merge together and I have more space to explore and that’s what I try to incorporate in my pieces as well. If you would see my pieces, there is nothing definite, it’s a mixture of lot of ideas and materials. When you would see my products, I am sure you will not take away your eyes off from it and that’s what makes them unique.
TAB: Describe your products and price range
RA: Currently am focusing more on neck pieces and earrings, I try to experiment by using different materials like fabric, acrylic, chains, crystals etc. My price range varies from Rs.1500 and above for the neckpieces and the earrings range from Rs. 850 & above.