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All about Arthaa

Aathirai Rajasekar | March 10, 2021

Happy Women’s Day to all you lovely people out there! After giving some thought regarding what my first post of 2021 is going to be, I decided to write about a not so little something I did earlier this year. I am super pumped to be talking about my very own label, Arthaa! I’d like to believe that 2020 was a year of reflections and 2021 is the year of manifestations. Last year, when I was at a crossroads with respect to my career, I started this blog hoping for it to help me see things clearly. Fashion and styling have always piqued my interest and I have been running in circles to see how I fit in some of those departments. At the beginning of the lockdown, I took up a styling course in the hope of interning with a stylist post Covid. However, I realized that I might need a job a little more stable yet fashion related, so I did this course on Fashion and Luxury brand management thinking I can probably travel and work at the same time. With each passing month there was this aching feeling in me as to why I should settle for either styling or management, when I can go all in. I believe that the world is your oyster and no matter what you do, you will always have a place in it. With that attitude, I jumped right in and started Arthaa, where we make breezy, chic and comfortable clothes to amp your everyday style.

The meaning of the word Arthaa whose roots lie in Sanskrit, is the pursuit of activities and means necessary for a joyous and pleasurable life. For me, clothes have been a major part of my life, rather an extension of myself. They have been a source of happiness and confidence and Arthaa was born with the intention to pass on that amazing feeling to everyone! Your clothes define you to some extent and we at Arthaa will help you look your best self, always! Now, that you know a little about my brand, I will be talking about what I am working towards.

Having been brought up in Chennai, it would be unfair of me not to pay an ode to the conservative yet contemporary vibe this beautiful city exuberates. So the clothes we make reflect the energy of this city. Summer being the prominent season here, cotton is my favourite material to work with, especially for men.

When I wanted to start my label, one of the factors I considered was the lack of menswear options in Chennai, especially good cotton/ethnic ones. With that in mind, I dropped my first menswear collection ! All our lives, we have associated the word “dressing up” with women, whereas for men no matter how shabbily they’re dressed there is always a justification as to how it doesn’t matter! Even in the iconic book, ‘Dress for Success’ by John T. Malloy, he talks about how women who dress well have better chances of bagging an interview or getting a job whereas for men their sense of style didn’t matter when it came to work or promotions. Well, thank god, gone are those days! Now it doesn’t matter who you are or what you do, the way you present yourself says a lot about you. Of late, I have seen the men in my life make a conscious effort to dress better but struggle with options, therefore they give up and resort to the same shirt in different colours or with similar patterns. This was yet again an incentive for me to start something on my own that fulfills this gap/need.

Obviously, now with H&M, Zara and other fast fashion retailers the options are a great deal but let’s not forget the horrors of fast fashion and how the women working in those companies are harassed and abused. The irony though! While we just celebrated women’s day, there are still millions out there suffering in silence. Well, that is a story for another post, I guess. Anyway, fast fashion is not only controversial but also known to be one of the greatest polluters of the environment. However, slow fashion is not only sustainable but also personal and made with good intentions. Keeping this in mind, each piece at Arthaa is handcrafted and made by tailors, who have been in the field for years. They, like many others, have been a casualty of the Covid crisis and are working to fend for their families. So, slow fashion also gives people employment, so it is a win-win-win! Having these pointers in mind, I wanted to do something for myself and others. And, that was how Arthaa was born! You can check us out on Instagram @labelarthaa Cheers!