A Fantastic World

Step into a world of sci-fi where new solutions (from upcycled to modern handlooms) crop up within the physical world, disrupting existing ideologies and stereotypes – this is the world of Dhruv Kapoor, as he recently presented his Spring-Summer 24 collection at Milan Fashion Week, Fantasm.

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What made you decide on ‘Fantasms’ and its futuristic tone?

We humans are the biggest mystery – where we come from, why are we here and what we are capable of… Fantasms was apt; it defines us as products of fantasy and that we are made of magic. The future definitely holds a true understanding of who we really are- devoid of social and political restraints, gender and backgrounds- and the future is now. Most of our Spring’24 has evolved through the mind-bending accounts as reported by Dolores Cannon through her series called the convoluted universe. It broadens your perspective and makes you revisit the past, present and future.

Designer Dhruv Kapoor

What made you travel back to the 1970s and what do you love most about this decade?

It wasn’t a conscious choice to look at that decade specifically, but more to do with what we discovered during our design process. The collection is inspired by a myriad subcultures and past eras that are spliced in a contemporary format. Fantasms pits 1970s sci-fi prints against vibrant florals and crop circle patterns including a versatile colour palette of mood-boosting brights and broody neutrals with the aim of tapping into the psychology of clothes, the impact of colour, silhouette and print, where the feel good factor is key.

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In terms of silhouettes – lots of pantsuits, louche forms – what were you aiming for, and what is the decoding of the masculine/feminine?

The idea is to birth a new aesthetic – one that borrows from both ends and takes a fluid form. Spring’ 24 questions our relationship with established gender norms for an innovative take on masculinity and femininity, where balance is key and silhouettes nod towards comfort with a DIY approach: detachable bejewelled collars and modular cargos; giant and petite pairings; raw and refined configurations. The combination of natural and artificial births a new dimension that explores the balance between the safe and familiar; the outlandish and the experimental.

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What are the fabrics that you have used (upcycled), and what percentage was upcycled and from where?

We seasonally commit to using 40 percent upcycled fabrics that are sourced domestically. Additionally, my team and I collectively explore options of recycled synthetics, fine suiting sourced from global markets along with custom-made materials that assist us in building a past-future direction.

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What are the rest, in terms of authentic Indian handlooms?

Spring’24 plays with multiple Indian handloom fabrics – from seersucker checks to mix-media jacquards in vibrant prints. This was one of the most exciting explorations during our design process – the options are endless and tweaking one single yarn can result into new textures and fantastic materials. The season also releases knitwear which is a key category for us.

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There was a lot of sportiness. Could you tell us about the sports combos and athleisure?

Functionality is key and that often gives a sporty appeal. I enjoy crafting pieces that would blend sport and couture together, where tech fabrics are crafted with elements from couture and tailored to a desired result. It’s this blend of polar worlds that excites me and maintains freshness in the product.

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A lot of denims and prints! Does this mark a return to urban street style for SS24?

Everything is streetstyle. The new age is all about pairing diverse moods together- from a vibrant print clash to a total monochrome look or a combination of the two. Fantasms plays in the same tone. Urban street style is all about elevated emotions- the intangible aspect of clothes.

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How have your travels, music, and contemporary culture influenced you for this collection?

I absorb my surroundings most of the time. It is exciting for me to observe floating mindsets in a room and react to those through our seasonal projections. Contemporary culture is individualistic. There are no rules or set standards to live by. We are free to choose our projection. In music, you can see me tuning into Indian classical or techno/ ambient or even hip-hop/ R&B. The collection always plays with a mix of moods, combining diverse genres in culture and music from varied eras.

How does it feel to be in Milan this year? What is the mood there?

Milan always feels like home. I have lived there for a couple of years and I always look forward to being back in Milan. There is always something brewing and we are surrounded by good taste and good food. It’s a feast for your eyes and your palette. During fashion week in Milan, you would always find a combination of heritage and contemporary culture coming together from around the world and its embraced with open arms.

What's next for you?

The next moves are always exciting. We are looking at an internal and external restructuring of the brand as we conclude our tenth year in 2024. We are working on multiple collaborative projects and introducing new verticals to the brand enhancing our brand experience and its offerings from all directions.


Priya Kumari Rana

Lifestyle Insider is a kind of junction point, connecting people with diverse interests that touch on the more luxurious aspects of lifestyle – fashion, design, travel, food and spirits, art, watches and jewellery, cars, yachts, and aviation, and technology. People today don’t fit into boxes and categories. In our individual ways, we are interested in diverse themes, products, and the challenges that face our world today. You will judge how well this effort of mine caters to your passions and proclivities.

Lifestyle Insider is a showcase of all that is beautiful and luxe. Behind every creation, is a designer, chef, entrepreneur, or a design maison. I have delved into my own appreciation for objetsde luxe that I have admired over the years – be it a love of fashion from the world’s top Parisian and Italian fashion maisons and their ’90s muses, or the care that goes into sari and Indian textile collections in my own family. Growing up on four continents, as the daughter of a former Indian Ambassador, I’ve seen a remarkable array of historic places and met a myriad people. My aim is to bring my world view into this website, a curation of what I find particularly stunning, unique, and newsworthy.

It’s an exciting time for brands all over the world. With change comes opportunity. With the global ‘reset’ and uncertainty on many fronts, there is a chance to write a new script. Let’s be those pioneers.

A bit about me:
A luxury and fashion journalist with 25 years of experience in publishing and magazine journalism, I have edited some of India’s top fashion and luxury magazines. I got my BA in Comparative Literature from UC Berkeley, and went on to receive my Master’s in English and French from the University of Strasbourg, France. I have also studied German and Film. I live in Gurugram, India, and look forward to once again exploring our world with a new-found freedom.

Priya Kumari Rana

Founder and Editor

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