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TRADITIONAL MEETS CONTEMPORARY – Sweta Acharya

Text by: Mannat Shrestha

Fashion designer Sweta Acharya is a woman of creative talent and innovation. Here’s a glance into her journey from a home-based designer to
running her own label. Excerpts:

What made you venture into fashion designing?

 I have always been a dreamer. I don’t know exactly what sparked my interest but while waiting for my high school results I decided to enrol into a short associate degree in fashion designing. Fortunately, it was the right thing for me. Also I was always fascinated with Barbie Dolls. I loved dressing them up in fancy outfits, maybe that too led me to my passion.

How did you get into business?

I started my career in 2015. I began working from home selling my designs to friends and family.  I received a lot of positive feedback and this led me to establish my company (SA) Sweta Acharya Fashion House.

Initially it was a bit difficult because my parents were sceptical about my decision. However, everything fell into place. Now they take pride in what I do.    

The fashion industry is very competitive, how difficult is it to generate sales and create a niche for yourself?

It’s definitely a competitive market but each designer has their own signature style. This gives designers the motivation. Every day is different. When others enjoy and appreciate your creation it gives you a sense of achievement.

Do you plan to showcase your designs in the international arena?

I will be showcasing my designs in Miss Nepal North America this August.

What makes Sweta Acharya’s designs different?

I would say it’s the choice of fabrics, beauty of the blend, contrast of the colours and the finesse of embroidery and embellishment. I try to focus on youthful clothing while keeping in mind the age and occasion. I make sure that the soul of the collection is traditional but styling is contemporary.

Where do you draw inspiration for your designs?

Before designing I always think of what dress I would want to wear, be it casual wear or bridal. I love bright colours, soft pastels and festive colour palettes such as red, oranges, sunset yellows, pinks, peaches and aqua blues.

Which designers have the biggest influence on you?

Manish Malhotra, Tarun Tahiliani, Wendell Rodricks and Sabyasachi Mukherjee to name a few.

Your clothing line is mostly traditional wear than western…

The demand for traditional wear is much higher. Western style clothes are fast moving and people prioritise readymade casual wear than customised. Also readymade casuals are much cheaper.

What is your latest collection all about?

There is no denying that the ruffled sari is definitely having its moment. So for my latest collection, I have infused fuss-free, modern, ensuring maximum impact with bare minimum effort looking saris this season.

How often do you follow trends?

Design trends are constantly changing. Being able to keep up with and implement them is an important talent for designers. Great designers don’t ignore trends; they study and understand them in order to work better. So, I do the same, follow, follow and follow.

What’s next for Sweta Acharya designs?

I am introducing another branch with a slightly newer business model (ready-to-wear outfit), set for opening this august.  

THIS SEASON

Five must-haves in a woman’s closet…

  • A statement blouse
  • A pair of comfortable palazzos (divider pants).
  • A long ethnic skirt
  • A multicoloured dupatta
  • A straight suit

Favourite colours

Pastel shades and dusty colours

Patterns…
Polka dots, stripes and florals

The biggest ‘stayer’
Layers and ruffles

A must-have accessory…
Punjabi jutti.