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    Moroccan tiles meet Rajasthani palatial paintings on Rashi Agarwal’s line of clutches, shopping and travel bags for Holii

    WITH Rashi Agarwal at the helm of design, bright rustic colours and Indian motifs with a strong preference for paisley have been creating a distinct personality for the accessory brand, Holii.Hailing from Coimbatore, she has been with the brand (the Pondicherry-based company sees a partnership between Hidesign and Future Group) since its inception five years back, and her collections have featured clutches, shoulder bags and wallets. In everything, including the latest spring line inspired by Moroccan mosques, there is the Indian element. “These mosques have colourful designs on their tiles, which I have tried to incorporate on leather,” says Agarwal, 25, who graduated from the London College of Fashion in 2012. “I felt the need to add Indian elements into modern day women’s accessories, with colours like red, brown, yellow and, recently, fuschia,” she adds.

    mug-shot_rashiMore room per bag
    On her roomy bags with embossed designs, Agarwal often uses the spray paint technique on leather. “We also have our own buckle factory in Pondicherry, from where we source our metal fittings,” she says. Embroidery on leather is also used extensively for some glamour. “We make separate inner compartments for each and every accessory inside the bag — like mobile phone pockets, for example,” she says, making a case for genuine leather. “I own just around10 bags, but they are all leather,” she says, adding,“I prefer working with leather because it is durable and also because it exudes a feel of luxury.” Commenting on the fashion sense of Indian women, she admits that summer sees a lot of pastel colours on dresses, which will be extended to her bags at a later stage. What she finds most common among the women, is their love for accessories. “They never get enough of accessories — be it handbags, shoes or jewellery,” she chuckles.

    Staying in touch
    Agarwal reads fashion blogs to keep herself abreast of current trends. Being a part-time model, she has walked the ramp for designers like Tarun Tahiliani and Ritu Kumar, and follows the latest from Paris-based Celine (for aesthetic clutches) and designers Alexander Wang and Karl Lagerfeld, among others. Next up, she says, is a collection of shoes for women and a line of apparel for men.
    Available at Holii store, Express Avenue, Chennai.  Prices range from Rs. 1,295 to Rs. 5,295. Details: 2846 4155

    — Karan Pillai

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