Falguni and Shane Peacock, Indian fashion industry’s power duo is one of the most desired designer brands globally. The husband-wife couple has dressed almost every celebrity in Bollywood – Aishwariya Rai, Priyanka Chopra, Kareena Kapoor and even Manushi Chillar in a spectacular gown for her big day as the winning Miss World in 2017. In the West, leading ladies Beyonce, Paris Hilton, Mariah Carey and Kim Kardashian have slayed FSP’s ravishing couture time and again!
The brand is also popular for its stunning wedding wear, which brides from around the world absolutely love. In the lockdown, Falguni Shane Peacock dressed celebrity stylist Eshaa Amin for her wedding; fittings, styling and consultations were done virtually, of course.
Undeterred at this time of the global crisis, the designer duo is now geared up to launch their first prêt store in Mumbai’s luxury locale Kala Ghoda in September. Falguni and Shane join LuxeBook for a chat on their new collection, new shop, the future of Indian fashion and realigning their priorities.
While many brands are finding it hard to sustain presently, you have a brand new store opening soon. Please tell us how it happened? Last November, when we launched our first couture store in Kala Ghoda, we decided to start working on our prêt collection next. We always wanted to focus on it but could never dedicate enough time to it. However, internationally, we are consistently showcasing our prêt line at New York Fashion Week. This was missing in India, and since our brand is a lot about edgy, ready-to-wear pieces too, we thought, why not launch the first Falguni Shane Peacock prêt store in Mumbai!
Did you ever expect to have such a low-key opening of your dream store? What kind of challenges did you face? We were all ready to launch the store on March 31 this year, but everything got pushed because of the market conditions and consumer sentiments that got impacted because of the lockdown. But, it was never a challenge for us. In fact, we are happy that we didn’t go ahead with it in March as there’s no point in doing a discreet opening.
So, now we will finally launch our prêt store in September. We are thinking of new ideas and strategies to have a completely different launch story rather than a traditional one that labels generally stick to.
And why is Kala Ghoda your choice of location for the second store? Our first store here is largely for occasion wear. Although it is an expansive 6,000 sq. ft location, prêt did not seem to fit inside here because of the differences in design sensibilities. We also wanted to give our clients a seamless experience to visit both our couture and prêt wear ateliers at just one destination.
How important is digitisation today? We always knew that the future is digitisation. Around three years ago, we released our brand’s Peacock magazine, which is also available digitally. This is our way to keep everybody updated with our latest collections, international work and feature people who wear our clothes.
During the lockdown, we have been rather quiet on social media because we feel, this time is to reassess and find ourselves. We wanted to see and live through this shift. Now, when we returned to our work, we realised that many people are still stuck in that quarantine zone and it is going to take at least over a month to normalise back to our old routines.
Your clients in the US are shopping for wedding couture as usual… Falguni Peacock– Yes, people in the US are shopping for FSP couture a lot during this time. Recently, we did several custom made pieces for them via virtual appointments and consultations. There are a few weddings scheduled for September, and, many brides are gearing up for that as well on time.
Shane Peacock- On our website (falgunishanepeacock.in) – we have a section, where I and Falguni virtually design, select and recommend outfits for our patrons. We started this eight months ago, keeping in mind our international customers from Hong Kong, Singapore, Dubai, Europe and the US. This was to make them feel assured, that when they are buying our outfits online, we are personally looking into it.
Will e-commerce sales supersede sales in brick and mortar stores? As Indians, we love shopping, especially during weddings. But sitting in front of a laptop and placing orders is not really the same as travelling to a brick-and-mortar store, looking at the outfits, feeling the fabrics, the length and even trying it on. Buying luxury items in entirety is about the experience.
But, it also depends on what one is buying. For instance, prêt wear is easier to buy online, because one doesn’t really need to try it on and contemplate too much about looking a certain way in it. For 2020, we think, the physical shopping experience is going to be less, but it will pick up again 2021 onwards and customers with their entire family would like to enjoy the outing again.
When do you think the market situation will normalise? Shane Peacock– I think things will soon normalise. I feel, if somebody wants to buy something, they would, even during the lockdown. For brands, the sale numbers may change and they might not be able to hit the year’s target as usual, but that should not be a worry. Overall, we just want things to get normal and I feel numbers can be achieved in the coming months or years.
Is the Indian luxury industry ready for the digital wave? Yes! And, this is the best time for it.
What is your latest collection The Tuscan Tour all about? This collection is for today’s It girls. We actually showed this edit in February this year at Coterie in New York. Our plan was to launch it right after in India during the March opening of our prêt store, but that never happened.
The Tuscan Tour is inspired by the spirit of an Italian Summer. The outfits are a fun mix of heavy prints, boho chic elements and asymmetrical cuts. One can play around with styling it with jewellery and accessories and can also be sported for several occasions and events. Basically, one can dress it up or dress it down as they like!
Please tell us about Falguni Shane Peacock’s next projects. Before the lockdown, we were planning to open a store in Hyderabad. By the end of this year, we may lock our final location there for the new opening. Besides that, we also had plans to open one store in Juhu, Mumbai. FSP is also working on its next couture week collection.
Overall, everyone is taking it a bit slow to sail through this phase happily and smoothly. We feel, there’s so much more to life and this period has given us immense perspective to prioritise and value things in our lives.
Your last words to our readers… We just want to say that all of us are fighting our own battles in some way. And if you are going through a tough time right now, please hang in there because things are soon going to change. We are all going to see the light at the end of the tunnel and we’ll come out of this much better and brighter.
Please pick up your phones and reach out to your friends, family and talk about things that are bothering you. This is an important change the world needs at this moment.