Internationally acclaimed fashion designer Verma D’Mello recently showcased her collection at the Cannes Fashion and Film Festival in France for the fourth time. This year too her collection was themed on women empowerment. She said that it reflected on her life’s work to transform the lives of the underprivileged and underserved rural women in my native Goa.
This year, her collection was titled, ‘I am Ganga, A Woman of Today’, which compared the life of these women to River Ganga. “Ganga is sacred to India and so are these women. The women living in rural areas show great strength of power of healing, replenishment, rejuvenation, and revitalisation,” she said. However, when she had an encounter with them she realised that they needed to be empowered as they lacked in basic skills of livelihood. “I thought, I needed to do something to help them just as how we need to do something to recover Ganga from the deteriorating life cycle of neglect and environment pollution,” she said.
Verma who had partnered with Goa Sudharop, a California-based sustainable development non-profit organisation was able to impart skills for their transformation to become like jewels. She says: “The dusky skins and beautiful smiles of these women remind me of the charm of a ruby, queen of the precious stones. I wanted to make their lives better and help them create a new identity, gain self-respect and the power to design the life they want, in order to glow like a ruby.”
Verma, who has now been invited to showcase her collection at other international fashion shows of repute, said that it has always been exciting to showcase her works to an international audience. Also, she mentioned that the love and appreciation she receives inspires her, which is an added responsibility to make better stories through her designs.