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Of couplets and poems inspired by subtle nature - Ranchi-born Anju Modi rocks ramps

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ARTI SAHULIYAR   |   Ranchi   |   Published 05.04.07, 12:00 AM

Ranchi, April 5: She keeps August company, among India’s design elites.

Ranchi-born Anju Modi recently showcased her “hugely” successful collection at the Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week, which began on March 21.

For those who are not convinced yet, here’s why she is all “hot stuff”. Her designs shared the same dais with Malini Ramani, Rohit Bal and Rahul Gandhi’s creations.

Here’s more. Shabana Azmi vouches by her designs and Sheetal Mallar, Carol Gracias, Madhu Sapre and Neha Dhupia are some top models who have worn her creations.

She may be hot stuff but her designs are all “cool” and “subtle”. With “Couplets and Poems” as her inspiration and theme this year, the fabrics, shapes and style was bound to be soothing.

This year, Modi chose a very mute palette of white and beige to showcase designs reminiscent of calligraphy. “My designs were really appreciated by Muzzaffar Ali and Pooja Bedi. I guess my USP is my variability,” said a delighted Anju, while talking to The Telegraph from Delhi.

Daughter of an Upper Bazaar businessman, Atmaram Modi, Anju moved to New Delhi right after her marriage in the seventies.

Though she may have left Ranchi, Ranchi never left her.

“When I was younger, I would often sketch the beautiful falls and mountains that were a part of my school and college days. I guess it was from there that I grew the habit of sketching. And developed a fascination for straight and simple things,” says the designer reminiscing from her New Delhi home.

There, at the nation’s capital, she runs two boutiques, mainly Square 1 at Saket and Crescent at Kutub International. A resident of Friends’ Colony, New Delhi, Modi hopes to pass on her passion to her son Ankur, who along with his wife Priyanka, is also a part of the designing fraternity. They have their label that they retail from the capital called AMPM.

Ask her what was her inspiration and she says it was the sketching habit that she picked up in her childhood home. “That later kind of flowed into designing and such activities,” she adds with a smile.

Modi did her schooling from Loreto Convent and moved to Ranchi Women’s College.

She is a regular visitor to Ranchi, her home that taught her so much. “I visited the city in 2004. But plans are on to visit Ranchi in the next six months,” said Modi.

And how often does she remember her home? “That’s my home. I long for Firayalal Chowk and Hundru Falls. These are places that are so close to my heart,” Modi adds.

Her love for simple designs also translates into the fabrics which she prefers to keep light, too.

So, it’s mainly Khadi weaves and cotton fabrics that are essential for her.

And she does not limit herself to designing only for an Indian clientele as her clients spread as far as Honk Kong, Singapore, Middle East and Miami.

“Ranchi is one city that is certainly growing, in terms of fashion,” she adds as an afterthought when asked to name up-coming fashion designers she believes in. Her future plans include setting up a holistic crafts village in India — much like the ones at Hauz Khas or Delhi Haat — which would exclusively deal with Indian sculpture, handicrafts, khadi items, tie-and-dye items and textiles.

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