Mumbai: Graduating students from Pearl Academy’s Mumbai campus, India’s leading institution in design, fashion, business, and media showcased a diverse range of innovative projects at the recently concluded Portfolio 2019. The day-long event was held at Sahara Star Hotel and witnessed a large number of graduating students demonstrate their outstanding final projects before the industry guests, media personnel, design experts and parents. Eminent personalities like Adwaita Nayar, CEO – Nykaa; Cory Walia, Make-up Artist; Diva Dhavan, Model; Sadashiv Nayak, CEO Future Retail; and Swetank Jain, Chief People’s Officer and Chief Communication Officer, Future Group took center stage and shared their valuable inputs with the students.
Through their work, students explored the role of design in innovation, technology, and fashion. Heba Shaikh, an undergraduate Fashion Design student, unveiled her final collection, which blended fashion and technology. Taking a cue from the 1960s fashion, her collection of coats contained Lithium-ion batteries, which regulate the temperature for the wearer. The heating sensors are sewed into the fabric and are lightweight and comfortable to wear. Aayushi Drolia, a Post Graduate Communication Design student, created an online book with illustrations which highlights specific areas in Mumbai that makes it easier to find spots while exploring the city. Each area of Mumbai has been separately mapped with food, drinks, nightlife and more. Adding to it was a project by Swastika Somani, a Post Graduate Communications student, analyzing the influence of icons on fashion trends, including the likes of Meghan Markle and Kylie Jenner, in the form of a website. This website allows users to mimic and recreate the fashion sense of their favourite icons. Shreya Shah, an undergraduate student of Communication Design, created a project that captures the sound of Mumbai city through various geographical areas. The project innovatively combined the cassette tape to the sound of chaos that the city has to offer. Monica Vanniyar, a Fashion Design student who won the Who’s Next scholarship in 2015 and received full merit scholarship also showcased her final collection. Monica’s Men’s Wear collection called ‘AHANTVA’ which means individual personality, is aimed for those who explore their looks in creative garments without losing their individuality. Monica who recently won the Emerging Talent Award at the Asian Designer Week attributed her success to her mentors who provided her with constant guidance and support during the entire tenure of her course.
Two-panel discussions added a fresh perspective and kept the audience engaged in detailed and in-depth conversations by experts. The business and luxury panel discussed disruption in the industry with experts like Rohit Nair from Burberry; Debraj Sengupta, Country Head, Victorinox; Darshini Lal, visual merchandising expert; Bidisha, Vice President, Wellspun and Pawan Sarda, Group head – Digital, Future Group. The panel discussion on Media discussed Brand Communication in times of Ad-Clutter and Digital Media: Emerging Trends and Challenges. Industry stalwarts like Mandovi Menon, Editor-in-Chief, Homegrown; Anand Mahesh, Director, Mavcom Consulting; Praveen Nagda, Founder, Perigrine PR;; Jahnabee Borah, Independent lifestyle journalist; Sartaj Jaffri, Founder & CEO, Black or White Brand Communication; and Tushar Panchal, Founder and CEO, War Room Strategies were part of the conversation.
The day ended with a glitzy fashion show, displaying the works of the students of the Fashion Design, Fashion Styling and Fashion Media Make-up course. Some of the highlights included clothes inspired by ‘Burning Man’ (garments created with zero waste), a collection of hand-made and organic fabrics, and one that contained microcapsules that lent a sandalwood fragrance to the clothes.
Commenting on the occasion, Prof. Nandita Abraham, President, Pearl Academy, said, “For the last 26 years, Pearl Academy has provided students with a culture of innovation, design and creative thinking along with the right mentors to make them successful in their chosen fields. The Mumbai faculty and students are very special and have outshone themselves year after year. This is the 4th batch of graduating students from Pearl Academy, Mumbai and I am amazed to see the creative maturity of our students in finding solutions to real-world problems. The have also performed exceedingly well in placements and have got some of the best jobs. I wish them the very best for their future endeavours. I would also like to congratulate the Campus Director, Ajay Sawhney, Deans of Schools of Design, Fashion, Business and Media and all the faculty members of Pearl Academy, Mumbai for bringing out the best in students.”
‘Pearl Portfolio’, has been Pearl Academy’s annual launch pad showcasing the work of graduating students every year. In recent times, Pearl students have showcased their work at other prominent platforms, events, festivals and fashion weeks in India as well as abroad, including Pune Design Festival, FOAID, Dubai Design Festival, Amazon Fashion Week, New York Fashion Week, and London Graduate Fashion Week. The graduating students of Pearl Academy students have found placement in companies like Ikea, Walt Disney, Accenture, Future Group, Marks and Spencer’s, Times of India, Nykaa, Aza Fashions amongst many others.