Decoding Designer Dreams: Shyamal & Bhumika
SHYAMAL & BHUMIKA
OLD-WORLD MADE GLAMOROUS
Ahmedabad-based couturiers Shyamal and Bhumika Shodhan are known for their grand and opulent aesthetic, which they display through their creations time and again. But what the designer couple has hidden from the world is their undying love and support for research and restoration work conducted on old Ahmedabad havelis. Their penchant for a 200-year-old haveli in Gujarat, which is seven generations old inspired them to recreate a similar environ for their newly-opened store at Kemps Corner, Mumbai. The motive, Bhumika says, was, “to reflect the taste of where we come from and in a way it presents our design sensibility of couture fashion”.
This lavish boutique spells opulence in its best form and highlights vintage glamour that leaves a lasting impression – much like their masterpieces of bridal wear. But the making of this store, which is a heritage property, was not a cakewalk. In their striving efforts to bring the look together both had to reach a consensus in their vision. While Bhumika wanted the store to look like a museum where each garment has its own space and importance, Shyamal went all out to explore the antique markets in Ahmedabad. Shyamal says, “I saw swing chains with these amazing metal motifs of elephants, peacocks and parrots in beautiful metal work. And I thought it would be amazing to have the garments suspended from a chain that’s coming through a 16-foot ceiling.”
Every corner of the store that stands out for its captivating historic feel has a story to tell. While the interiors offer a good contrast and an ancient flavour to their global line, the furnishings and decor portray craft revival. Whether it’s the wall with assembled carved antique wood panels or the intricately-designed cast iron jalees, the space exudes luxury in a historic fashion. “Much like our fashion, the store is largely organic, decorated with pieces of antique wood and aged metal belonging to an era. Most of the décor is hand done and each detail of this store was hand drawn and hand crafted,” says Bhumika.
The happy twosome has gone all out to set up a luxurious shop that can instantly transport you into another era. “Each part of the store is our favourite and reflects our aesthetic,” she adds.