This project was undertaken with I Was A Sari, a brand based in Mumbai that works with underprivileged women to upcycle saris into apparel and lifestyle products. The project brief was to optimise the brand’s apparel offering for an ecommerce relaunch directed at the B2C European market.
The project required an assessment of existing styles as well as the introduction of new styles to form its permanent offering. Due to the brand’s unique business model, it was imperative to understand its ideology, aesthetic, operations, and strategy for the future. Research was conducted regarding the brand’s target market, consumers, and competitors. The collection was developed with a conceptual direction keeping in mind the print, colour and silhouette requirements. Exercises in sizing, sampling and experimentations were conducted. Apart from the design brief, projects to add additional value were conducted, particularly in bag design, waste utilisation, and a fabric categorisation system.
The learnings from this project were diverse, including the importance of understanding the brand’s aesthetic, ideology, and objectives as guiding factors towards executing the design brief. The project provided experience in navigating around a company’s limitations, including fabric, manpower and time restraints. The project also helped develop professional skills in collaboration, communication and effective time management. The brand’s unique business model gave valuable insights about scaled-up operations in upcycling and social upliftment models.