Great news for you fashionistas!
Sonam Kapoor is undoubtedly considered a style diva, who many girls look up to. She and her younger sister Rhea are not just best friends, but Rhea has been styling Sonam now for many years. It thus comes as no surprise that the two sisters have been working on a brand of clothes for years, which they will now be launching in India in September.
The brand, titled Rheson, will not be a high fashion brand, but a high street brand, which is accessible, affordable and makes girls comfortable, given the Indian body type. Excerpts from a conversation with the sister duo on their plans for their label, that will be available coming September across all Shoppers Stop outlets across the country.
Talk about your new clothing line Rheson?
Rhea: Sonam and I have been working on this for years, literally. Sonam had a lot of offers to become the face of a brand and be their ambassador, but we never wanted to do that. We have been working together and I have been styling Sonam for years. There are so many girls who follow Sonam’s fashion on social media. But we never wanted to just put our names on something and call it ours.
Sonam: We wanted to work on something that is owned by us and had our personal touch on every level. So finally, we got a true partner in Shoppers Stop, as they saw the potential in this and we are finally launching in India in September this year. Our brand is called Rheson, a combination of Rhea and Sonam, phonetically pronounced reason. It’s a high street fashion brand meant for real Indian girls.
What will the pricing be?
Rhea: Starts at Rs 400 and will go up to Rs 4,000.
What kind of clothes will it be?
Rhea: Indo-Western and separates that means individual pieces of skirts, T-shirts, tops and sweatshirts. Sonam: We wanted to make it fashionable for real girls, but also make it affordable. But besides being aspirational, it should also be something that every girl should want to wear and feel comfortable and beautiful wearing.
Sonam, you are considered today a style diva. Do you remember the watershed moment where you felt like a style icon or did it just happen organically?
Sonam: When I was doing Saawariya, I was very interested in doing fashion, as my sister and my mom were very much into it. Sanjay Leela Bhansali had given me the freedom and encouraged me to style myself for promotions, as he trusted me with my sense of aesthetics. While I am better than Rhea on Indian clothes, Rhea’s sense of western aesthetics is way better than mine. Rhea started styling me and I realised that I was really comfortable in photoshoots and my magazine covers started just flying. I remember Karan Johar was the first one to tweet then how I looked as the first international movie star. So kind of Sanjay, Karan and Rhea propelled me into doing that. I always had a real girl’s body and have never had a skinny model body. I have never once not been myself and have never tried to be someone else.
Sonam, you look like a diva every time I see you. Is that by design?
Rhea: Sonam has always been a dreamer. She loves fairy tales and loves stories. She feels most comfortable when she feels she is in a character or a dream world. So if I put Sonam into something where she looks like a princess or whatever, she braces the fairy tale and starts behaving like that. Girls take to her as she feels like a girl in a fairy tale. She is never on the red carpet with a smolder. She is always laughing and smiling as she is happy. There is a difference in looking at a camera and saying, ‘I own you’ versus saying, ‘I look amazing.’ She does the latter. I remember when we just started going to Cannes. The first year we went there, we had this idea of the funk rock princess. It was always about this is what I want to be and we were not competing with anybody. And it worked. Sonam wants to live in a dream world and that is what clothes do.
Who will be designing the clothes?
Rhea: Sonam and I, with a group of designers under us, will be doing that. The idea and vibe will be ours. Once we launch, every couple of weeks, there will be 40-50 new pieces that will come in.
Sonam: We want to make young girls realise that you don’t have to spend money to look stylish. It’s like accessible, affordable glamour.
Is Sonam the first star to do it in India?
Rhea: Yes. But while most people think that Sonam is a girl who only wears high fashion brands, a lot of girls who follow her know her street style as well. These will be clothes that you can wear every day. We are not wanting to be a couture house that will give you a gown for the red carpet. Those designers are literally artists. We are only trying to be your best friend and your stylist. We are not even pretending to be an Armani or an Anamika Khanna. We want Rheson to become a part of the lives of girls and we will be around for years. Neither Sonam nor I have been skinny model type. She has been both, fat and thin, and I have dressed her at both times. I understand that no Indian girl will look good in low jeans and you need to be comfortable in what you are wearing and still look chic. For instance, Sonam will never wear a mini skirt as she knows her body.
What will the sizes be?
Rhea: The sizes will range from extra small to extra large (UK size 6 to 16). The clothes will be available in a stand-alone section in Shoppers Stop. The clothes should make you feel a warm embrace and not insecure.
What makes you both so compatible with each other?
Rhea: We are very different personalities, but we are genuinely best friends and communicate with each other. If there is something bothering us, we will say it. Our mother has been so awesome in our relationship that she has made sure that both of us are given so much love and so much space to be sisters. She will never pit one against the other, never compare us. Sonam has always been the creative person, while I was always the studious one. But she never compared us. She was always so happy for the both of us to be who we are. So our compatibility is a lot to do with her. My dad too treats both of us as individuals. And the reason we are both so strong in our personalities is because our parents took the time to know us, embraced that and then nurtured that rather than compare us. Sonam is way more protective about me than my parents and vice versa, as my mother made it clear to us that you both are there for each other and you figure it out. If we have a fight, she will say, ‘Deal with your shit,’ but she will not interfere and that is the best thing she could have done. Today we are each other’s biggest cheerleaders.
What made you choose Shoppers Stop?
Rhea: First of all, the whole idea was to make girls feel that it is accessible. Shoppers Stop has been a trusted brand in India for years. So the girls trust the store, are comfortable being there and are familiar with it. It is accessible to a girl even in a smaller town and city. We never wanted it to be a brand that is available just online, as accessibility is very important for us. You need to be able to walk into a store, whichever city you are in, try it and then buy it.
Govind Shrikhande (Customer Care Associate and Managing Director, Shoppers Stop Ltd): It is a great honour to partner with the quintessential fashion icons Sonam and Rhea Kapoor. Rheson will appeal to female customers between the age group of 18-35 and will also be available online at http://www.shoppersstop.com.
Source: Times of India