Rina Dhaka is a veteran designer. She spoke to us about fashion trends, the problem of sustainability of and her next line for plus-sized people.

Q. What is your personal style statement?

A. My go-to clothing in the day is very comfortable and minimalistic. I live in my son’s leftover t-shirts and track pants, which are soft on the waist and give me a lot of freedom of movement. I wear sneakers in winters and personally I love wearing skirts, as evening wear. I have a great collection of accessories and I vouch for clothes that are quick to get into.

Q. What do you think is the fashion industry’s biggest challenge today?

A. Though sustainability is an interesting topic, are we really sustainable?  I don’t think we are. Weavers are using Chinese yarn because it’s cheaper and readily available, even in handloom products. There has to be a trade-off between being completely sustainable and enabling people engaged in making these clothes to earn a living. I work with Kota and Bhuj weaving centres allotted to me by the government. Also, very importantly, there is a mafia of weavers that needs to be removed.

Q. You are about to launch a plus-sized line. Tell us more.

A. The fashion show will be held on 25 August at Lakme Fashion Week and I recently held auditions for my plus-sized brand and around 360 people turned up for 30 places. These women and men were beautiful and confident in their own skin and were even wearing tight-fitting bodysuits. Size doesn’t and shouldn’t come in the way of one’s confidence.

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