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Isha Rajpal On Taking Inspiration From The Modern Indian Woman To Create A Designer Brand 

Isha Rajpal On Taking Inspiration From The Modern Indian Woman To Create A Designer Brand 

Isha Rajpal, Founder of Rose Room Couture, creates her designs like she is directing an art film. She wants to tell an enthralling story and her clothes become the characters. As a perfectionist, Isha reveres the process of designing each one of these creations. It can be best witnessed every day from 12-5 pm when her atelier is buzzing with creative energy. Sampling new fabrics, conceptualising designs—the designer guides her production team to bring her ideas to life. Every single detail has to be aced to the T and there is no scope for a hurried seam or rushed finish. “I like to take it slow and steady,” she explains. 

Back in 2012-13, when Isha was pursuing her master’s degree from NIFT, she’d often skip classes to browse through fashion magazines in the library. She was captivated by the power of costume design. “I just had this instinct about how I’d like to bring out the true style in a confident woman with clothing that is timeless,” she shares. In a way, she was creating Rose Room in her head even before it started. However, it was her friend and popular singer, Kanika Kapoor, who inspired Isha to take up mainstream designing in 2014. Kanika had just started her Bollywood career and requested Isha to design a range of embellished jackets for her. 

“Something that has never been done in India,” Kanika shared in her brief. Isha took the opportunity to put her creative senses to best use. She created stand-out jackets complete with fresh fringes and lace details. They weren’t just statement pieces—they were investment pieces that became a hit and garnered celeb fans including ace designer Sabyasachi Mukherjee. A few days later, she received an email from Aashni & Co. They were in awe of her designs and wanted to launch her by showcasing her collection at a London fashion show. One thing led to another and soon enough, she was heading a full-fledged prêt-à-porter line. 

Isha Rajpal

Isha launched her haute couture line in 2019 with a swanky new store in Ambawatta One. The garments here are truly exquisite and can be distinguished by the signature beaded weaves, lace details, and trims. They are glamm but not in-your-face, grand but not garish, standout but not OTT.  Isha’s understanding of the modern woman is evidenced in her designs.  “Recently, I have started to design jewellery as well. We have great plans for Rose Room Couture and it will all keep unfolding,” she adds. 

Unlike other designers, Isha avoids taking a collection-based approach to her designs. Every garment follows its own journey. She has introduced Indian fashion to a new style language that is authentic, endearing, and timeless. With our POPxo Women Who Win series, we celebrate creative minds and changemakers like Isha. In a recent chat with us, the master couturier talked about her style, design, and timeless elegance. Excerpts below:

How do you begin your day?

I start my day early. After a light breakfast, I meditate for a while, say my prayers, and listen to some audiobooks on affirmations. On some days, I manage to sneak in a workout in between all this.

What does a typical workday look like for you?

I mostly reach the office around noon and head straight to the production unit. After that, I sit down with the design team, follow up with orders,  monitor operations, and conceptualise new designs. It involves a lot of mix and match, trials, and to and fro. Then I head out for meetings, store visits, and my favourite part—personal appointments with clients.

Isha Rajpal

Did you always know that you wanted to be a designer?

I believe that God gives each one of us a unique talent and it is up to us how to chisel it and bring out the best. I did my master’s from NIFT but I used to skip all the heavy and boring classes to sit in the library. I always had this instinct about how I would like to dress up and how I’d like to bring out the true style in a woman with clothing that is timeless and a piece of art. Not just couture, even when I design my prêt, I make sure that it is special. I want to express myself with my clothing and create something that leaves a mark. 

What was the inspiration behind Rose Room?

The Rose Room woman has always been my main source of inspiration. She is strong, no matter the challenge. The Rose Room woman is elegant, and bold at the same time, much like my designs. 

Isha Rajpal

What’s the USP of your brand and the recently-launched couture line? 

Rose Room Couture has a strong identity. At a party, you can easily spot someone wearing our outfits because of the delicate fabrics, the laces, the femininity. That is the core essence of the brand. To be honest, I am getting married next month and when I went looking around for my trousseau, I somehow could not resonate with any of the designers. This is part of the reason why I launched my own couture line. It comes from a place of passion and that has helped me retain the brand’s individualistic language that includes beading weaves, laces, and a colour palette screaming of femininity and elegance.

Plus, I don’t make collections. It is a very individualistic product journey. I work on each and every product. I visualise a particular product and then put it into execution. My inspiration is mostly elegance. I believe in the idea of a strong woman who can conquer it all with utmost elegance and my clothes are made with her persona in mind. In the designs, you will find a lot of vintage elements executed and elevated for the new age woman. 

What would you say has been your biggest accomplishment so far?

The biggest accomplishment for me was when I opened up the Rose Room Couture store at Ambawatta One. The greatest turning point was stepping into couture, from a world of ready to wear. 

A mantra that you swear by?

The key to abundance or fulfilment is love, and prayers do create miracles.

What would be your advice to budding designers?

Tolerance and teamwork is the key to your success. 

Isha Rajpal

Three fashion hacks that you swear by?

  1. When you have nothing to wear, pairing white with denim always saves the day.
  2. Floral dresses are a must-have in your wardrobe. 
  3. Minimal yet luxurious lehengas are a go-to for me for any and every occasion.

How do you unwind?

I make sure that I set some time apart for daily meditation and an occasional soothing massage. I also love going on spiritual trips that help me realign my energy. 

Isha Rajpal lives in New Delhi. Her journey with Rose Room Couture has been inspiring and wholesome. Team POPxo wishes her all the luck for her future endeavours.

Featured Image Courtesy: Isha Rajpal

24 Mar 2022

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