Manoviraj Khosla is a name to reckon within the world of fashion. This maestro had his goals set early and went on to learn the nuances of Fashion and Design in American College, London. Khosla came back to launch the ‘Manoviraj Khosla’ label in 1990. Starting with menswear, he moved to womenswear under the same label. In 1995 he tied up with the UB Group to launch his second label – the ‘Kingfisher Line’. This line consists not only of men’s wear and women’s wear but also a stylish range of footwear.
Introduce yourself to our readers.
My name is Manoviraj Khosla, I am a Bangalore based designer.
Tell us about your studies.
I completed my schooling from Doon School, Dehradun and then I completed my Bachelors of Commerce. Then I studied fashion designing from London.
What were your aspirations when you were in school?
Actually, I decided to be a fashion designer at the age of 15, even though there was no fashion industry in India and my parents were apprehended, but I convinced them that I wanted to be a fashion designer.
When you were studying Fashion were did you interned and how much according to you internship matters in this field.
I didn`t indulge in the internship while I was studying, I started interning after my course was over, then I interned with some small boutique designer in London then I came to India, were I worked with various export houses. As far as internship itself is concerned, it matters a lot because it gives a first-hand experience, that is why every college encourages its student for internships so we have people who come for internship with us all the time, whether its NIFT, Pearl Academy and lots of other colleges as well.
How much grades matter in college education?
Having good grades is always important because good grades mean you are good at something, it only matters when you are doing things in practical ways, if you are mugging things for the sake of exams and vomiting it in answers sheets then this does not make sense because you need to understand what you are doing. But I think too much emphasis on grade is not useful because we have so many examples where people got very successful in life but had the worst grades in college.
Most of the student from NIFT or any other any designing college want to start their own label, so what are the complexities involved in starting your own label?
I don’t think anybody who comes straight out of college should start his own label immediately because the most important thing is to have some idea and some practical experience because college curriculum is not sufficed to give you the idea of how things are in real world so, it is better to work under a designer as an assistant for some time because this would give you the idea of ground reality. So get some practical knowledge of the industry, understand what you are actually doing because once to go straight away after the college you are too raw and you have no practical experience, so it is advisable to work somewhere for 2-3 years.
What is the advice that you want to give to the students who want to start their own label in future?
Like I said earlier, in order to start your own label you have to be well versed with ground reality, get practical knowledge of the industry and understand what sort of label you want to set up, you have be aware of the designing qualities within you because this will help you to determine what sort of label you want to start. If you know the qualities that are within you and your designing abilities, identifying your target would be much easier. So identify the category in which you want to go in and go ahead and start your own label. And one more thing when you start a label you have to show the customers how you are different from the others, how you are more creative and more genuine from the other and this factor is very important in this industry.
What were the problems you faced when you started your own label?
See, you face problem in every business, and when we were starting out in a business which was actually had no past history in India we were starting out something from scratch and that’s when the industry was starting, so at that time it was not like today when you have hundreds of retails stores selling designers clothes there were merely one or two at that time. So at that time I was thinking whether I am making a wrong decision and also there was no awareness among the people, today 20 years, 30 years later people are much more aware and that makes things easier. So today the scenario has changed considerably, today due to internet penetration people are more aware and they are more conscious about what they are wearing, so for the new generation of designers, this is a plus point.
What is your advice to those who are studying in fashion designing college or those who want to pursue a career in fashion designing in their near future?
Well according to me the most important thing is, pursue fashion designing only if you really understand both fashion and design, the problem with most student is that they think anybody can become a fashion designer, hire a master, hire two tailors and you have become a fashion designer this is the reason why some designer have made and some did not.
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