Pune, 2013. Personal Interview at Symbiosis Institute of Design, taken by the current Head of Department of Fashion and the Deputy Director, Mrs. Sanjeevani Ayachit. Me, a wide-eyed naive 18 – year old, over the moon about being able to come so far in that one course I was desperate to get into : Fashion Communication.
Nervously slipping through my portfolio and showing my letter of recommendation from my then Editor of a leading national newspaper, I tried to hide my growing impatience, because everyone knew a quiet interview wasn’t good.
“Don’t you think you are overqualified? Give me a reason why you should be considered.”
2017, April, I graduated from Symbiosis Institute of Design, in Fashion Communication, specialising in Fashion Styling and Writing, and having a knack for business and brand management that got me a MBA with scholarship in Luxury Brand Management at IFA (Institute of Fashion Academy ) ranked 6th in France, where I am soon going to be a part of cultures like Istanbul and Paris, as part of the programme.
Why am I saying all this? I am not bragging. It is not my intention to brag, but to highlight the fact that nothing in life is ever easy and you never know unless you try. My journey in Symbiosis wasn’t an easy one, sure, but it was also one I would never go back and change.
In my four years of graduation, I have seen students come and go. For some, bearing the pressure gets too overwhelming and some realise they are not cut out for design. I never thought I was too, till the day I had my first class in Fashion Studies in my second year and after that, time and again, I knew I could breathe, eat, sleep, walk and talk fashion communication, a state that all the 21 girls in my class would undoubtedly agree to.
From pulling all nighters to partying till dawn the next day at the thrill and satisfaction of having completed a project, to giving up sometimes and crying endlessly and holing up at home and avoiding college and taking a few backlogs, we have all been there and done that. From confiding in our mentors to developing some beautiful relations with our faculties as we grew older, we realised that we made it from being 18 year olds to 23 year olds and worrying about our jobs and securities now.
I have seen many come and go. People are always obsessed with the idea of something, like being a part of the Symbiosis culture probably, given that the hype is not negligible, but look beyond it, I promise you its much more.
If you are focused, goal and career driven and ambitious about design, then this place is what you can call home for the next four years of your life. And, if you are lucky enough, this is where your nights will turn into days with friends who would turn into families. This is where you would find people who would momentarily but significantly replace your family for you on days when you are homesick, and diligently dole out the roles of a mother, father and a sibling.
DESIGN SHOWCASE, 2013-2017.
This is where you would make plenty of mistakes in your life too. You would lose control sometimes, feel the rush of your youth, feel the magic in your bones. You would rise above and fall down with a thud too, and every time you learn to walk back after your failures, you will know better than to quit. You will realise that you are in a lion fight, and people around you are your competitors and your colleagues you can learn from. Just because you didn’t win once, doesn’t mean you forgot how to roar.
You will learn to trust people even when your instincts tell you against it and amidst all that trusting, you will also learn eventually to trust no one but yourself.
This is also where you would find the love of your life and if you are lucky enough, then it would be the kind that would be for eternity. You would finally learn at your age, what loving selflessly is. You would have a love that writers write about and if you are strong enough to balance it all out and sustain storms, you will realise that this place is where you got your friends who became your family, your career, your motivation and your heart.
My design showcase, which is our annual graduation show happened in the month of April. That glorious moment for which we all waited for was finally here. I couldn’t feel more proud to see all my hard work transcend into the panel that had our work on display and I felt blessed to receive praises and best wishes for life beyond the four walls of Symbiosis.
PANEL DISPLAY OF DEGREE PROJECT WORK
It was a consuming three – day affair with the Design Show, with placements and Fashion shows, exhibitions, dinners and parties, telling everyone goodbye a thousand times and promising to keep in touch. It was like hearing every kind of goodbye said all at once.
My personal style has always been chic, comfortable and casual and for my Design Show, I decided to break the monotony of formal dressing and be comfortable yet classy in a ribbed shift dress and an anti-fit dress. Lace and metallic choker were my go to and only accessories as I like to keep it clean and minimal. My make up was also very balanced, with a pink glow, matte pink lips for the first look and green smoky eyes, matte nude lips for the second look.
PINK TREND – DRESS&CHOKER – FOREVER21
ANTI-FIT LOOK – DRESS&CHOKER – FOREVER21 & GLOBAL DESI
Shoes are my comfort zone, and when I know I have to party, my stilettos were diligently displaced with metallic golden shoes, my current all wardrobe staple!
I recall, the night of the farewell, all I did was observe my batch of 180 or fewer students, all together probably for the last time, interacting, dancing, laughing and talking to each other, all together amidst their differences, but together nonetheless.
FASHION BATCH 2013-2017 , BATCH PHOTO BY – MANJARI SINGH
On a closing note, I quote from Grey’s , ” Today’s the day my life begins. Today I become a citizen of the world. Today I become a grown up. Today I become accountable to someone other than myself and my parents. Accountable for more than my grades. Today, I become accountable to the world. To the future. To all the possibilities that life has to offer. Starting today, my job is to show up wide-eyed and willing and ready. For what, I don’t know. For anything. For everything. To take on life. To take on love. To take on the responsibility and possibility. Today, my friends, our lives begin. And, I for one can’t wait.”
Written by Adhisa Ghosh