Rina Dhaka has been a part and parcel of the Indian fashion scene for the past fifteen years. After college, Rina did a training project with Intercraft, and with designer Evan Grandhal. She also set up a `Salwar Kameez` boutique for one of her acquaintances. She also made a line of designs for `Mutiny` and `Ensemble`, which were just coming up as fashion houses. Her clothes were well received, and she entered the fashion fray.
Early in her career, one of her designs for the Miss India events caught the eye of the late Rohit Khosla, the only fashion designer back who known for his innovativeness. She was encouraged by his appreciation and has striven to keep up the spirit of innovation. She is best known for her theme collections - sheer trousers, crochet, stretch jersey, woolens and spider web motifs. Her forte remains western wear and she prides on the fact that her pieces can be worn separately. She believes in being true to her creativity and she has also opened a studio in Hauz Khas Village for Lycra.
Various International fashion magazines `Vogue` and `Elle` have featured her work. Her show in Singapore, which was attended by their President, was an astounding success. Though her strength lies in designing knits for Western wear. Now she has also started doing Indian garments in knit and other fabrics. Indian wear basics support her western wear creations. With Indian women beginning to work in the outside world and becoming more independent, there`s a market for both western and Indian clothing, party wear and office attire.
Rina Dhaka emphasizes silhouettes and in one collection she mixed fur and boots with her Indian outfits and always gives five or six looks in each collection. She is also impatient with the shapeless jackets and lenghas, which are worn at all weddings, hence she has brought back a lot of the fitted clothes, the churidhars which were done earlier, in the sixties.
Rina Dhaka featured Indian heritage having T-shirts with motifs taken from Indian miniatures, Ajanta and labels of popular brands. Her creation had beautiful thread work, patchwork, fringes and shadow work embroideries, tastefully blended to create sexy strappy T-shirts worn with skirts and trousers. Her extensive use of surface texturing in a variety of silhouettes boggled the mind.
From a designer whose colour palette is so often vibrant we saw a much more subdued mood, with colours ranging from white, to greys, indigos, blacks and taupes. Her western silhouettes were created from a variety of modern fabrics including lycra, for a body hugging line, georgette, and panné velvet. There were lots of Indian touches to be seen, like chikan, mirrorwork, leheriya, tribal embroidery (one of the only flashes of bright colour),ikat prints, gota and beadwork. Skirt lengths were short, often with the flippy asymmetric hemlines that Anita Dongre did so well. Trousers were slim line flares.
Rina Dhaka started off with a very bold and fearless fashion statement presenting the James Bond girls with a collection that was a delight to watch. She showcased ivory capris, bra tops, skirts which were worn with tights and cat suits. The focus was on slinky body fits achieved through stretch knit skirts that skimmed the waist and then erupted into gorgeous volumes. Her dresses and skirts were made up of antique looking fabrics patched together and embellished with laces, sequins, and plenty of glitter. The colours of this range were classic - ivory, sage, lavender and old rose. There was beautiful sequining in silver and gold done into fish scale perfection, use of gold shimmer which is very strong for Spring-Summer 2005, delicately compact mushroom-underside like pleating and joyously colourful patchwork enhanced with wool baubles and seaming.
Drawing her inspiration from the 40`s, 50`s and 60`s, Rina Dhaka created a Hollywood inspired collection with a rich choice of colours and a liberal touch of shine. Dhaka`s Fall/Winter 2005 collection had short black dresses, slim skirts with fitted blouses, embellished denims and churidar pants with kurtas, all accentuating the contours of the female body. The collection was all about being sexy yet sophisticated. The fabrics were sensual chiffons, silks, satins and mesh lycra. Unlike her previous collections, this one was almost entirely dominated by black. Embellishment was used liberally through Swarovski crystals, beads, sequins, lace, silver embroidery and white patchwork.
Wills Lifestyle IFW 2006
It was the Fall -Winter collection running into a festive season. It`s simple, clean and polished look reminiscing of the 90`s and had a feel of 2006. Fabrics like cashmere, viscose, silk georgette was used.