Q+A: Rohan Kale.

May 5, 2009
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London-based LCF graduate Rohan Kale has, I reckon, provided the most apt Summer inspiration: bold, bright silks and a boutonnière or two. Enjoy some brief insight…

1. Tell us a bit about your design background/Where did you study etc.?

Before coming to the UK, I completed my Diploma in Fashion Design from
NIFT Mumbai. This training has been crucial in my development as a
designer. I was offered a place on the 2nd year of the BA and went on
to graduate from LCF. My graduation collection impressed the right
ones and I was offered an MA at LCF with the Harold Tillman
Scholarship. Since I wanted to do a post grad at some point, this was
an opportune moment!

2. How do you define your design aesthetic, and what inspires it?

I am always inspired by colour. And my strength is tailoring. My
design aesthetic often tends to be a combination of the two. I get
inspired very quickly by most things that catch my eye. People or
objects with strong identities – for example a rose. Or camouflage.
The visual impact is for me the most important aspect of my creation.
This combined with tailoring to create form. My MA collection, ‘The
Two Christians’ is my homage to my two favourite designers – Lacroix and
Dior. And that should not surprise you!

3. I’ve heard you’ve undertaken freelance projects for brands – can you select one as your favourite?

Oh, this is totally different! I have designed and developed clothes
for many brands like Dunlop, Berwin&Berwin, John Rocha and Maine New
England at Debenhams. I have been very lucky to be able to work for
the high street alongside developing my own work. It teaches you a lot
and I feel it is important for any designer to be very aware of this
aspect of the industry. There are often challenges. Like the work I
did for an adventure-clothing brand, which strangely shares my name –
Rohan. It’s definitely the best work I have done as it involved very
intelligent and purposeful designing. To make things work and look
good is a different sort of creativity!

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4. At the LCF MA show you won the opportunity to exhibit as part of On/Off – can you tell us a little about the experience of showing for the first time?

It was awesome! Lee Lapthorne awarded me the On/Off prize and I had to
remake one of my outfits to be exhibited during London Fashion Week.
My new sustainable start studded suit had images of Isabella Blow,
Hilary Alexander, Hamish Bowels, Naomi Campbell and the list went
on. It was my first time to be in the spotlight on a world stage and I
enjoyed the experience thoroughly. It is definitely one of the best
places to network.

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5. Some of the most striking pieces from your collection are multi-coloured, shimmering silky affairs – do you feel these looks are representative of the new, slightly more feminized man many designers have been envisioning?

Men are now not experimenting with colour and fabrics like silk – they
wear it with much ease and confidence. I think over the last few years
we have seen rigid boundaries that surround menswear disappear and men
today look good in what they wear. I also don’t think it is effeminate
to wear colour or shiny fabrics.

6. What’s next for Rohan Kale? Have you any interesting projects/shows in the pipeline?

You will have to wait and watch on this one!

Images from catwalking

  • Brandon May 7, 2009 at 7:47 pm

    Good interview, the questions you asked were great.