I’m a part of films as much as they are a part of me, says the ace fashion designer
Cinema has had an unmistakable imprint on his career but fashion designer Manish Malhotra says he was initially criticised for starting the trend of Bollywood showstoppers. Malhotra, who has completed 27 years in the industry, is not only a celebrity favourite but has also been responsible for some of the most stylish movies, be it “Rangeela”, “Kuch Kuch Hota Hai”, “Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham” and “Veer-Zaara”, among others.
In an interview, Malhotra says, “Having Bollywood stars in my shows was never planned. It was organic. When I was doing my first fashion show, I made Urmila (Matondkar) walk as we had just done ‘Rangeela’ and a lot of actors came to my show. That unknowingly started the trend of showstoppers and the front row.”
The designer says while people mocked his shows for their star quotient, having a Bollywood showstopper has become the trend now. “I was criticised for getting celebs. Today, when I see all the designers running after actors to make them wear their clothes or calling them to be the showstopper, I have the last laugh. For me, it was always out of friendship and emotions. I am a part of movies as much as movies are a part of me.”
Malhotra says his journey in cinema has been beautiful and the support of his celebrity friends keeps him motivated. “I was so wide eyed about Indian cinema. I had the foresight to look into costume designing, which no one was looking at. Of course, it involved a lot of hard work. Today, I feel inspired and that encourages me to do a lot more.”
While juggling his collections and movie commitments, Malhotra often faces a creative block but the designer says he cannot afford to stay in that zone for long. “Every day is not a Sunday and there are times when I come to my office and my assistants have a lot of questions. I go through them and feel blank. But I have the responsibility of 600 people who work with me. They are like my family. I am responsible for them. I don’t have a choice other than think and explore. I can’t let them down.”
With his latest collection “Tales of Indulgence”, which he showcased at the recently-concluded Lakme Fashion Week, Malhotra is venturing into bespoke tailoring. The designer says he wants his brand to evolve with time and bespoke tailoring was something he was keen to explore.