It’s not hard to imagine that Pink Cow founder Pratima Anand might have a yen for the bovine. Thankfully, her range of kids’ wear has no traces of her cow fixation. The National Institute of Fashion Technology graduate set up Pink Cow two years ago, when she couldn’t shop for any “sophisticated clothing” for her children. After she found that kid’s clothes made of synthetic fabrics “were sold at prices of those made from pure fabrics”, she decided to create outfits from the best fabrics and embellishments she could find.
She has a constant “princess” range for girls with dresses for every imaginable occasion including birthday parties and “high teas, garden parties and cocktail dinners”. She also does seasonal collections using traditional weaves and embroidered fabrics in line with the latest international fashion trends. So you can expect an explosion of colour in her spring/ summer line. In the coming months, she will launch a kids’ nightwear range, followed by a flagship store and a line for teens.
531-C, Boran Road, opposite Elco Market, off Hill Road, Bandra (W) +91 98701 06971, www.pratimaanand.com. Dresses from R700, gowns from R3,000.
We have to tip our hats to stylist-turneddesigner Jia Nariman Chauhan for employing the ultimate marketing strategy in kids’ wear – complimentary Barbie doll dresses. Just eight months old, Veri Vintage already has a loyal customer base of six- to eight-year-old girls who regularly send photographs of themselves with their dolls in the matching outfits. Requests for internships by young fashion addicts have got Chauhan planning a summer fashion design camp where girls can watch the in-house tailor create mini doll dresses.
Chauhan’s creations are nothing like the average cotton-candy dresses; they are best described as larger-than-life costumes, sure to steal the show at birthday parties. The current collection includes ready-made lace saris and trench coats in vintage prints. But we fell in love with designs made from Indian fabrics like the ghagra-choli set with the skirt made from nauvari fabric and a bandhgala jacket complete with a red pocket square. The attention to detail doesn’t stop there: every outfit comes with its own vintage hanger and a scented pot-pourri bag. Now if only kids didn’t out-grow their clothes so quickly.
Call Jia Nariman Chauhan on +91 98926 11772 or email email@example.com. From R 2,500.
It’s not easy to pick a gift for a baby shower but we’ve found a perfect one: Amba’s super-soft kurta-pyjama sets. Products from this kids’ loungewear label feature funky block prints like vintage cars, autorickshaws and chappals. You’ll also be spreading that warm, fuzzy feeling much farther than you think – founder Hema Shroff Patel claims a portion of the sales are used to fund programs involved with the revival of traditional textiles and training of weavers, dyers and block print artisans in Maheshwar, Jaipur and Sawantwadi.
Patel has worked at Rehwa Society for over two decades and is now a board member of the NGO. She launched Amba in 1999 but instead of expanding product lines, Patel focussed on quality control. The Jaipur block prints change every year and the current collection, Horn OK Please, features kitschy peacock-lotus combinations seen on trucks and tickerstyle stripes that read “Horn OK Please”. So forget the diaper bags and onesies, Amba’s products make funky presents.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org. R1,100-2,000.
You know school is tough when moms are compelled to design clothes for nursery sessions. One day it’s traditional day, the next day there is a fancy dress contest and before you know it, there’s a festival around the corner. Interior designer Vaishali Doshi and housewife Zainab Merchant met four years ago, when their daughters, Giaa and Sana, were still in play group. Tired of looking for good-looking Indian outfits the girls could wear to school, the two decided to team up and set up Kids Chakra.
Whether it’s Diwali or Baisakhi, Doshi and Merchant have got you covered. They design adorable ready-made saris, anarkalis, and Patiala pants for girls and kurta-pyjama sets and sherwanis for boys. The ladies understand the need to replenish kids’ wardrobes every year and keep a check on the pricing. Their clothes are so lovely that we want to replicate the rainbow-coloured ghagra-choli set and chanderi button-up tops with fluffy sleeves for ourselves.
Call Vaishali Doshi on +91 98333 35253 or Zainab Merchant on +91 93222 51150. Shop online at www.brandmile.com. R1,800-3,000.
Dimple Kubadia is easily one of the most fashionable moms we know. Last April, we wrote about Only Kids Allowed, Kubadia’s multi-designer store for kids’ apparel and accessories on Linking Road. She has since renamed and relocated the store to Dadar and in the next few months, Zoe will transform into a one-stop-shop for designer wear, not just for kids, but also for men and women. At present, only the store’s children’s section is open and the all-white interiors are brought to life by bright and cheery outfits by over 20 labels including Baccha Party, Honey Bunch, Lil’ Waist, Pink Cow and Glow Accessories. When she’s not busy scouting designers to stock at her new boutique, she spends time designing casual and occasion wear for kids.
Kubadia enrolled at the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising in Los Angeles but dropped out in 2002 when she got married. She set up her first store for womenswear, Auburn, at Kemps Corner in 2007, but always longed to design clothes for kids. While you won’t see her collection on the racks in store, you can ask to browse through the hundred-odd designs for little girls and boys stocked in her office. We spotted gorgeous semi-casual dresses made from traditional weaves and printed fabrics for girls and well-embellished sherwanis and stylish jackets for boys. It’s when we dug out a black-and-purple cotton print dress with pockets and sleeves lined with silver chanderi borders and a halter dress with floral embroidery and fat solid coloured borders that we realised that Kubadia has a great sense of layering and mix-and-matching fabrics of different types. So the next time you plan on converting your old sari into a salwar suit or ghagra-choli set for your child, think about bringing it to Kubadia. In exchange, you can expect to leave with a trendy dress, a well-structured shirt or even a playful jumpsuit.
Occasion wear from R2,000.
If you’re the sort of parent who balks at spending oodles of money on kids’ clothes, two-year-old label Baccha Party’s solution for making clothes for kids last longer is sure to win your hearts. Artist Renuka Jalan and her cousin, celebrity-stylist Sohaya Misra, design kids’ wear without sizes. What you get is a host of straps and strings on dresses that allow them to go from flowy gowns to minis to tunics to tops and dhoti pants that can be worn as ankle-lengths, knee-lengths or shorts as your child grows.
Much like the designers’ sense of style, Baccha Party’s overall design aesthetic leans towards hipster-meets-boho-chic with simple cotton and silk apparel in solid colours or Jaipur prints, finished with just oversized motifs like flowers, stars, butterflies, leaves and buttons, the kind you expect to find doodled on children’s notebooks. What started as a hobby will come full circle at their flagship store in Bandra in the next few months. We’re hoping the ladies will also stock adult versions of their creations.
Call Renuka Jalan on +91 98198 34472 or email email@example.com . Visit www.bacchaparty.in. Available at R1,000-6,000.
While we were mourning the passing of our favourite 2011 fashion fad, the fruit trend, we stumbled upon Little Pixie, a children’s wear label founded by two self-confessed dessert fiends. Fashion designer Nishita Toprani met American expatriate Shannon Frandsen at a photo shoot for Le 15 Patisserie where Frandsen, along with her three-year-old daughter Isabel, modelled in Toprani’s macaroon-inspired creations.
Frandsen then convinced Toprani to design some dresses for Isabel and soon they were planning the launch of Little Pixie, as a sub-brand of her womenswear label, Pixies and Pearls. With Frandsen’s daughter as the guinea pig and a target audience of fashion-conscious expat moms in place, the two have set out to create a line of clothing that’s “pretty, posh and playful” to bridge the gap between expensive designer wear and department store styles. Their debut collection has four lines including basics, ballerina with satin and lace frocks and our favourite, fruits. Apart from being pretty, posh or playful, every design invokes nostalgia with its impeccable detailing like the tear-drop holes at the back and pearl buttons.
Call Shannon Frandsen on +91 98200 82065 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Shop online at www.little-pixie.com. From R650-4,000.
We’ve always been envious of other women’s wardrobes, but we never imagined our jealousy would someday extend to include a six-year-old girl’s closet. Ayaana Shah is one of those lucky girls who are blessed with a fashion designer for a mum. Her closet is filled with samples made by Jasmine Shah and her sister-in-law, Amisha Kothari, both established womenswear designers supplying to stores like Amara, Aza and Mogra. With ample experience designing clothes for Ayaana, they launched Tare Sitare last September.
The label doesn’t offer bespoke services yet, but they release designs collection-wise. Their current collection includes ghagra-choli sets in net and satin, tie-dye kurtis with matching churidars and dupattas and fluted net salwar suits with embroidered lace, playful and bright enough to suit little girls in styles similar to regular women’s ethnic wear. Kothari and Shah plan to experiment with more styles in the next couple of months because “kids look cute no matter what they’re in”.
Call Amisha Kothari on +91 98211 63715 or Jasmine Shah on +91 98209 11382. Dresses from R2,500, Indian wear from R3,000.
By Prerna Makhija on January 05 2012 6.30pm
Photos by Mohnish Dabhoya