If you can now buy a Suneet Varma sari for Rs 22,000, you have the designer’s wedding couture clientele to thank.
“We were creating a wedding trousseau last year and the bride-to-be said, 'Suneet, all my family members are demanding your saris as gifts, but how can I afford to buy so many?’” Varma told us, speaking on the phone from the Vogue Wedding Show in Delhi.
Fast-forward to March 22, in the middle of fashion week season, when Varma opened his first ready-to-wear (RTW) store at New Delhi’s DLF Promenade.
"I decided to start with saris, since they’re easy to produce and don’t create size issues," he says. "We spent time researching the rates of other retailers so that we could be competitively priced.”
Having separated his RTW production team from the couture arm of his company, Varma now has a business formula in practice for each.
“With our couture line, the last thing we finalise is the price, since with all the Chantilly lace, French chiffon and Swarovski crystals, we have no idea how much a sari will cost until it’s ready. With our prêt line, we worked backwards, determining the price first,” he says.
With his new RTW store, the designer joins the growing tribe of couturiers from Manish Malhotra to Tarun Tahiliani who are looking to create a retail empire rather than "be happy selling one sari a week", as Varma puts it.
Suneet Varma RTW store is located on the first floor of New Delhi’s DLF Promenade in Vasant Kunj.
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