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December 15, 2016

8 International Designers Who Are Inspired By India

Text by Sadaf Shaikh

They talk about Indian textiles, creative opportunities, and love for this dynamic country

1. RYOKO HARAGUCHI
Exhibitor of Haath Heart‘ at Artisans’, Mumbai

Haraguchi studied textile art at the Otsuka Institute of Textile Design after discovering her love of fabric. She worked for the functional brand Muji, and later in 1996 set up her independent design studio called Sind Shop. Bound by a fascination for Indian weaves and Japanese dyeing techniques, Haraguchi will be presenting an exhibition at Artisans’ titled Haath Heart from December 16 to December 22, 2016, which brings innovative design to the forefront.

1. On Indian elements that entice her “It’s how the whole process of yarn, fabric and garment construction comes together in the country’s textiles.”

2. On choosing India for this transcultural collaboration “I first visited India in 1986 as a designer for Muji. During my time here, I travelled all over the country searching for unique textiles and after being very inspired, I started designing for myself. This is just me taking my art back to where I got it from.”

3. On challenges “Often, I have problems with fabric selection, dyeing, stitching, and scheduling because, in isolation, Indian and Japanese designs have so much going on.”

4. 3 adjectives that describe her brand “Exotic, comfortable and elegant.”

5. On her inspiration “I was reading a book by Hiroko Iwadate during the time of my store launch in Tokyo, and it mentioned a part of western India called Sind. Sind was known for producing and exporting cotton and since my little gallery was shaped like a fluffy cotton ball, that’s what I named it after.”

6. On her favourite moment in India “On my first visit to India, I witnessed a craftsman dyeing a garment in blue. The gradation on the silk fabric was of such exquisite beauty that I took the cloth back to my hotel room and slept, clutching it to myself.”

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