A heart-to-heart talk with In­dia’s ace de­signer Sabyasachi Mukher­jee

We caught up with In­dia’s ace de­signer Sabyasachi Mukher­jee to share his wis­dom on trends and tra­di­tions in the decor in­dus­try

The Ideal Home and Garden - - Contents - IM­PRES­SIONS: BENOY SE­BAS­TIAN

What is the most chal­leng­ing part while work­ing for in­te­ri­ors?

For me the big­gest chal­lenge is let­ting your per­sonal ego take a back­seat. Ul­ti­mately we have to un­der­stand that we are not only in­ter­act­ing with a fam­ily, but also build­ing or rather say cre­at­ing a home for some­body where the fam­ily has to re­side. While your own vi­sion is also im­por­tant, you need to re­spect the other per­son’s vi­sion no mat­ter how bad or good it may be. This is one of the rea­sons I like to be a de­sign bully, be­cause I like to do things my own way. That’s why I have de­cided never to do peo­ple’s homes un­til they give me ab­so­lute free­dom. I am happy to do only pub­lic spa­ces. I am happy to do wall­pa­pers where I can use my ideas and de­fine the space the way I want to do it.

From de­sign­ing clothes to royal suites of five star prop­er­ties; and now a huge as­so­ci­a­tion with Asian Paints, how is the tran­si­tion in terms of fash­ion to home?

I pre­fer de­sign­ing homes and in­te­ri­ors more than fash­ion, be­cause when you are do­ing cloth­ing, es­pe­cially the kind of cloth­ing that we do, we in­ter­act with peo­ple through our cloth­ing oc­ca­sion­ally, as we are in the oc­ca­sional wear busi­ness; but when we de­sign homes, we are in­ter­act­ing more with hu­man be­ings each day. I like build­ing re­la­tion­ships. I think the best re­la­tion­ship that we build with the cus­tomer is by cre­at­ing a beau­ti­ful space for them to live in.

What is your idea of style?

My idea of style is about be­ing com­fort­able in who you are. The mo­ment your per­son­al­ity shines through, you are stylish. The mo­ment your clothes wear you, rather than you wear­ing your clothes

you be­come fash­ion­able; and I don’t re­spect fash­ion, I only re­spect style.

Have you ever failed at any­thing?

Oh..many times. I have failed at re­la­tion­ships. I have failed at keep­ing up with friends. I have failed at good de­signs. I have failed at writ­ing good copies. I think fail­ure in very im­por­tant be­cause it makes you more hu­man and is a step­ping stone to suc­cess. Only when you ac­cept your fail­ures, you go to the next step. I failed all my life (laughs). The only thing at which I have never failed at is math­e­mat­ics.

What is the cur­rent range all about. What was the in­spi­ra­tion?

The cur­rent range is all about re­viv­ing things that we see in In­dia that we lit­er­ally take for granted. Whether it’s a print or rather say printed clothes, which are made in power-looms, whether its the Indo-Dutch or the Indo-Por­tuguese or the Indo-Bri­tish col­lab­o­ra­tions; thread tex­tiles or hand prints from Mathura paint­ings, minia­ture paint­ings, icons of In­dia like tigers and the Taj Ma­hal - this col­lec­tion cel­e­brates ev­ery­thing that’s In­dian.

Max­i­mal­ism is the new trend for decor. What is your take on that?

Max­i­mal­ism could have been a new trend for decor, but for me its been a life­long trend, and I like max­i­mal­ism, be­cause there is ev­ery­thing that you own and you are proud of, it is dis­played all around you. See, its as sim­ple as this ex­am­ple - when you chat with peo­ple on so­cial me­dia for the first time, you keep on ask­ing for pic­tures all the time, the more pic­tures you see of the per­son, the more you un­der­stand who the per­son is. Max­i­mal­ism is like that, you know you cre­ate mark­ers in your home where a per­son re­ally un­der­stands that you are not uni-di­men­sional, but you are multi-faceted.

What would you say are your main in­flu­ences while con­ceiv­ing a piece of work?

In­dia and the world that I see around me. For any de­signer what you see around you is what you vi­su­alise and con­sider it as your in­spi­ra­tion.

What gets you out of the bed ev­ery morn­ing?

Fear - Fear of fail­ure, be­cause I have nine­teen-hun­dred peo­ple work­ing un­der me. I have to pay them salaries ev­ery month. I thinks it’s re­spon­si­bil­ity that keeps you go­ing.

What makes Ni­laya’s lat­est range so spe­cial?

I think what makes Ni­laya’s lat­est range so spe­cial is the fact that to­gether, the com­pany and me are tak­ing a de­fin­i­tive stand of feel­ing very proud of our her­itage. I think its go­ing to trans­late very strongly to the con­sumer as well. We as re­spon­si­ble peo­ple should be ready to ac­cept our her­itage very strongly.

IM­AGE COUR­TESY: TAJ HO­TELS PALACES RE­SORTS SA­FARIS

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