Dancer, fashionista, stylist, costume designer and an entrepreneur-in-the-making, meet the lady of many talents…Pernia Qureshi.
In a virtual world that’s swarming with online shopping stores, one more would have quietly sunk into oblivion, had it not come from the name best known for having created the uber glamourous Aisha — a movie that’s credited for having ushered in a new era of sartorial sensibilities in Bollywood. Her new online store Pernia Pop-up already has an impressive array of Indian designers offering top-of-range collections. And is making waves in the industry. We catch up with lawyer, dancer, stylist, designer — a woman that’s fast becoming a brand to reckon with—Pernia Qureshi.
How did the store come about?
Despite the number of stores there exist in the market, most of them seem to offer heavily discounted out-of-the-market stuff. I saw there was a huge gap for fine quality, well curated, true fashion. Which is what I think I bring to the table with the Pop-Up Store.
What’s keeping you busy at the moment?
The store’s only two months old. So we are working on stabilising it, working out the details. Making it more user-friendly, introducing new sections that are more interactive — chic speak, look of the week, celebrity closet and more. Oh, and we are going to be updating the collections with my own line and a lot more designers.
How much work actually goes into setting up a store like this?
I’m working all day and all night. Since it’s your own business, you take full ownership. I’m not saying it’s easy but you never stop working because you are really enjoying it.
While most stores pride themselves on bringing global fashion to Indian shores, you seem to be doing quite the opposite. Is that your USP, so to speak?
The aim of our store is to make available the best of Indian designers, both to Indians here and people everywhere in the world.
So, is Indian fashion finally coming-of-age?
Definitely. More and more Indian designers are going back to Indian roots and fabrics. Even as the creations are contemporary, they are ethnically inspired. People everywhere are looking forward to Indian creations.
Considering the uncertainties of online shopping, is cost an issue?
I think that with my site, because people know me either because of the movie industry perhaps, there’s a definite trust factor. They know that they are guaranteed the highest quality product and ‘designer wear’ actually means designer wear. So there’s a lot of credibility. We also take pains to ensure the highest quality control. A customer can be rest assured that they will get exactly what they want. So no, its not a risk.
After Aisha, did you have a lot of offers? Is Bollywood still on the table?
Yeah, there were a lot of offers, even some plum ones. But not any that really excited me. I don’t like doing things for the sake of doing them. I want to do it justice. Taking up a project would leave me with no time even to breathe. So I’m going to be concentrating on the store for now.
How important is dance to you?
Everyone should have something in their life that makes them happy. Dance is that for me. When I dance, I’m happier, more productive, I eat healthier, I’m less grumpy. Dance is my devotion and my therapy.
Law, dance, fashion, business… you seem intent on conquering everything you step in to. What’s your mantra?
I don’t think I’m qualified to give a mantra. But I do whatever makes me happy. No compromises. When I connect to something, I have to give it my one hundred per cent. Also, I don’t believe in sticking to one thing. I think you should explore and do a lot of different things.
Where do you see yourself say five years from now?
I hope to be a better dancer, do interesting films, art, make Pernia Pop-Up store the go-to place for girls from all over the world for Indian fashion.