One is a Fashion Design graduate, the other is a Mass Communication graduate with a major in Advertising. When their two trades came together, they formed a harmonious blend to create one establishment. Raipur-born sister duo Shreya and Priyal started Ode to Odd in December 2017. The combination of their strengths is what defines the fashion label. Priyal tells me, ‘We both have a very similar visual aesthetic. In our minds we have a lot of clashes, but when we go into the process and when the result comes up, both of us know what is going to work and what isn’t and in the end it is all sorted out. Also, I feel having clashes is good in a way. When you have clashes you are challenged. You tend to explore different ideas. It gives you a space to reinvent yourself again and again.’ For Shreya, it was a childhood passion. She always knew she wanted to do this. Even when she was very young, she would play around with her mother’s sarees and drape them around herself in 10 different ways. Moreover, she came from an ICSE school which had a lot of stitching projects, which she took to with great enthusiasm. So even before she entered college, she knew all the different types of stitches. For Priyal, it happened much later; she was 18 when she started developing an interest in fashion. ‘When I was studying in Gujarat, I would travel to places and that’s when I found my love for craft. Plus, I loved styling and saw it as something I could do later down the road.’
‘Ode to Odd is an ode to all kinds of odd people. It can be anything, it can be an odd feeling, odd thing, odd people. It is also an ode to all the craftsmen because we feel like they are becoming an odd phenomenon in today’s time as we are moving towards machines.’
In the past year, the siblings have done two major collections, one of which made it to the Lotus Make-Up India Fashion Week. The first collection, called Phenomenal Woman, questions the progressive world that we live in: ‘In view of social media censorship and the absurdity of gender politics, it is an honest attempt to stir a conversation around dictating sartorial choices, a movement to normalise the female form and stop female objectification.’
Look closely and you truly believe that the collection celebrates the female form in true sense. The second one, a capsule collection—Language of Flowers—made its way to the fashion week. ‘It is inspired from the simple yet moving works of the contemporary poet, Nayyirah Waheed. Her poetry is beautiful, melancholic and yet so powerful. It has a way to make you vulnerable yet empower you at the very moment. The endearing sense of being a woman has translated in our pieces with simplicity at the core. It traverses the spine of a woman and yet speaks the language of flowers. It is a world of feminine power,’ says Priyal.
Text Hansika Lohani Mehtani
Shreya and Priyal Mewara