In honor of TIME's most influential list, we put together our own list: 'Most Influential Brown People In Fashion'. As the South Asian presence in fashion continues to grow, there are some names you should get familiar with. These we chosen not based on fame or fortune but their influence and ability to take South Asian fashion to the world. With that in mind, meet our power players...
When the world is watching you, and you still manage to shine, that's when you know you're here to stay..
I don't know how much I can talk about Prabal but I'm going to try! This is a story that Hollywood is going to want to produce one day. A kid raised in Nepal, dreams of fashion and moves to Delhi... followed by London and Melbourne... before finding fame in New York. It's taken 12 years but my god, could his determination for world domination be any clearer?
Prabal Gurung's brand has become a staple among celebrities like Michelle Obama, Kate Bosworth, Oprah, and, yes, even our own Sonam Kapoor. He's the one stylists go to when they want to make a fashion statement. It's fresh yet classic, and daring without being risky. His use of silhouettes and sharp angles is just enough glamour for any red carpet. What I love about Prabal is that his designs are versatile- worn by celebs and fashionistas across the world of all ages... how many 'new' fashion houses can dress Mrs Obama and Rooney Mara? 'Nuff said.
ANAITA SHROFF ADAJANIA
Meet our future Anna (or at least it seems to be turning out that way)...
Most of you may or may not recognize Anaita as Kajol's friend in DDLJ (yes, that was her!) but you will definitely recognize her more recent work (especially if you read this blog). Anaita has transformed herself into one of India's most powerful people in fashion. She's the 'Fashion Director' of Vogue India but has become the face of the magazine & movement. She keeps a low profile, much like our dear Anna, and continues to put out AMAZING work under the Vogue India umbrella. Her styling efforts can be seen across the pages and screens in India, and it is under her influence that I feel India will come to hold it's own in the global fashion arena. Yes, to me, Anaita is our Anna. Bow down folks.
|Anaita styled this look for Deepika. One of my favorites... perfection.|
There's only one really holding the torch for what is possible for Indians in fashion..
I swoon at his name. The godfather of the Indian kitsch, this man has been building his empire since the late 90s and just look at what an empire it has become!! He's been stunning us with imaginative and wild designs way before Gaga and Minaj brought it to the masses. Even Prabal Gurung interned for him at one point in his career. If there is any South Asian holding the fashion torch, it's Manish. He's moved to Paris, taken the helms of the famous French house Paco Rabanne and now, quite frankly, there's just no stopping him. He is, in our world, creative genius. Period.
Meet our future Rachel Zoe...
She's new to the fashion world (in comparison to the others on this list) but we aren't going to hold that against her. I have a soft spot for the woman who interned in New York and then went on to become one of the most influential people in Indian fashion. She's worked hard and it shows. She's responsible for Sonam's transformation and bringing high-fashion to Bollywood with the Sonam-starrer Aisha. Lord knows Bollywood could use some good styling and now they have Pernia to call. Her latest effort is an online pop-up store which I've been swooning over all morning and I'm anxious to see the moves she makes next. She's definitely the one to watch on this list.
SONAM & RHEA KAPOOR
The sisters - and daughters of a legend - that changed Bollywood forever...
It wouldn't be complete without mentioning Sonam (I think some of my readers may kill me if I don't! LOL). Y'all seem to love her and though I sway more towards Deepika or Freida, I do see the off-screen talent of Sonam. She is an amazing model and wears high-fashion well. While her sister Rhea and stylist Pernia are the clear change makers, Ms Sonam Kapoor shouldn't go unnoticed. It takes a team - and one very poised celebrity - to make make this happen. Together they've brought the fashion movement to Bollywood in way noone else has. It was great timing and strategy on everyone's part. Sonam may or may not make it as an actor (at least outside of Bollywood), but she now has a foothold on the global stage as a fashion ambassador for Indian women everywhere.
Tell us what you think here or on our Facebook page. Love Ashlene xo.