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Lavanya Bahuguna


When Designer Aneeth Arora Took JWB To Knit Tiny Hearts At Péro

  • JWB Post
  •  August 9, 2016


Let me be your Pippi Longstocking, and I promise I will swing my pig-tails the highest.


#iwearhandloom ♥️ #Repost @thefdci with @repostapp ・・・ The Indian Weaver is the backbone of our textile industry. Support them by supporting #IWearHandloom #SunilSethi @smritiirani_in #iamwearinghandloom #madeinindia #makeinindia #handloomday #indianweavers #handloomsarenotboring #trendyhandlooms #handmade #handmadewithlove #handmadeinindia #supporttheinitiative #textileday #textilesofindia #indiantextiles #FW16 #pippigoestopoppyfields @thefdci #sunilsethi

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I have been chanting these words ever since I saw Péro’s collection on the runway. No doubt, Aneeth Arora is my favorite designer. I admire what she does to a simple piece of cotton cloth or for that matter, other indigenous textiles. She has a thing for fabrics, you see. If you think cotton and khadi are passé, and polkas and gingham checks are too classy to wear every day, let Péro brainwash you.


Aneeth’s work is triggered by the response (read: love) she receives from her buyers. As a result, Moja Péro and Chota Péro were born.

#pérodoll myra is our pocketfull of sunshine #springsummer15 #ss16 #handmadewithlove #chotapéro #peopleofpéro

A photo posted by p é r o ® (@ilovepero) on


Today, the Péro team consists of underprivileged artisans (mostly, women) who work at the store located on the outskirts of Delhi, amidst an industrial area of Patparganj. The area is far from the central city, and so, Aneeth has made sure a bus picks and drops the artisans every day. At that, Aneeth calls it destination shopping. “Only a person really curious about Péro will make efforts to brave the city’s traffic and travel this far,” she says.

When I met Aneeth, I audaciously took two hours to learn all about her brand. Did you know, she had named Péro scarves and the latest Péro crochet flowers after the craftsmen who’ve designed them? In the middle of this conversation, I blabbered about the cruel Delhi rainfall. For the records, it’s not my habit to confess about what troubles me to people I am meeting for the first time, let alone someone I am about to interview. But something about Aneeth made me speak, making us indulge in a productive talk.

Scroll down to read more from that day…

Me: You once said you weave your own textiles. Why did you think of doing so?

Aneeth: I was in National Institute of Fashion Technology, Mumbai, and later did a Masters in Textile Design at the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad. During the course, I developed an inclination towards the technicalities of textile right from weaving to printing and dyeing. Plus, living in Udaipur for some time made me realize how much I admire the local trends, especially from the hamlets. For example, how they fix a broken button with an altogether different one is interesting.

While working with Zylem, I tried inculcating the textile sensitivities on paper. Before I designed clothes, I decided to understand the fabric and that was only possible by getting my hands dirty in the process of manufacturing.

Me: Was it difficult to find the artisans with similar ethics, considering how underrated the textiles are in our country?

Aneeth: When I was a student, I used to visit Dastkari and other local fares to meet the artisans. Later, I began traveling to places like Karnataka and Arunachal Pradesh to meet people working in the field of handloom. I remember staying with them in their beautiful tiny huts for days to learn more about their art and folk culture. I still do it annually. Traveling has helped me revive embroideries like Jamdani, Kasuti, Murgi stitch, etc.

Me: How do you distinguish Péro? For me, Péro is everything from layers to flowy fabrics, from pastels to oxblood, from monotones and monochromes.

Aneeth: From what you just described, Péro Couture is both floaty to look feminine; and embellished to feel ethnic. The billowy fabrics in soothing colors and careful details together create Péro. For me, a Péro woman cannot be classified. Boundaries do not define her. Her wardrobe has clothes that fit every culture she has been to or desires to explore.

Me: Is it right to say that you are a little biased towards white and off-white?

Aneeth: *smiles* I make sure white marks its presence in every collection. For destination weddings, brides who shop from Péro mostly prefer white couture embellished with delicate sequins that fit the mood.

Me: And, androgyny?

Aneeth: You’re correct. Very evidentially, androgyny is visible in our collection. It’s not necessary that women who choose Péro are androgynous in nature. They, too, are soft and understand details and other girly cuts. But at the same time, they are aware of their stronger side. Mixing androgyny with delicate pieces has helped me widen the fashion market and cater to a new kind of buyer.

Me: Did you have to dig deeper to find this market?

Aneeth: In the beginning, people would say Péro is expensive which demotivated me a little. I wanted to tell them it’s all handmade, and the prices are supposed to vary. Thankfully, Sabyasachi’s words boosted my morale up. He said, “I understand your love for handmade, don’t be disheartened. Keep doing what you believe in.” So, here I am.

Me: How have the Péro buyers surprised you with their fashion experiments?

Aneeth: Wearing a Péro shirt with boyfriend’s jeans, or for that matter, throwing a shimmery scarf over a linen Péro shift dress and turning the look apt for a night party.

Me: I love the oldish feel in these clothes. Do you have any creative secret to reveal?

Aneeth: We wash each garment before presenting it on the runway. Our idea is to offer comfort, and there’s nothing more comfortable to the skin than worn-out clothes.

Me: I agree. Which designs/patterns are you fond of?

Aneeth: That’s a tough one. I like Ottoman coats, printed shirts adorned with mended patches. Checkered patches, to be precise. You see, checks are never going to get old. They have an old school charm that never fades away.

Me: That’s why I like you, Aneeth. Am I missing any interesting story from your artisans?

Aneeth: Oh, there are many. You should see how all of us work to bring various art together. The other day, I asked them to make embroidered Polkas and Ikats. Of course, a perfect shape was out of the question, and hence, they were worried. I explained to them why they should let the imperfection happen. After all, this is what handmade is all about. Have you seen the tiny hearts Péro makes? They are all hand-woven.

A photo posted by p é r o ® (@ilovepero) on


Me: They are super adorable. Even the Péro labels are handmade. So much handcrafted love to handle. I wonder why Péro has no online presence!

Aneeth: I like the feel of the cloth before investing in it. I believe, others prefer the same.

Me: Gear up, because I’ve got some quick questions for you! Who’s your favorite fashion designer?

Aneeth: They have to be Abraham and Thakore.

Me: Best compliment ever?

Aneeth: Once Sunil Sethi told me, “Aneeth, it seems like you’re your own competitor. It’s been almost eight years that you are working in the fashion industry, and you’re unbeatable.”

Me: I second him. Next, current read?

Aneeth: The Art of Looking Sideways by Alan Fletcher. The book has no layout, no font format; it has absolutely no flow to it and is full of artworks, poetries, and art incidents. You should read it; it is food for the soul.

Me: I will surely check it out. If you weren’t a fashion designer, what would you do instead?

Aneeth: I will be an Anthropologist once I retire. But my parallel career has to be gardening. I want to be a full-time Gardener.

Me: One thing you don’t like.

Aneeth: I don’t think I dislike anything. We overuse words like ‘Hate’ and ‘Detest’. These words are too big for me to utter.

are you ready for the pajama party? 👼🏼 #péro spring summer 2016 collection in stores now ♥️ #springsummer16 #ss16 #pajamaparty

A photo posted by p é r o ® (@ilovepero) on


Let me tell you what I love. I love how Péro has made our pajama parties memorable, helped us pack a hassle free travel suitcase, created playful classrooms, and made us dance like Pippi Longstocking.

#TBT photograph by Sachin soni #FallWinter2016 #AIFWAW16 #FW16 #PippiGoesbacktoschool #Pippigoestothepoppyfields #backtoschool #schoolisover #pippilongstocking #mojapéro #allthingscheckered #love

A photo posted by p é r o ® (@ilovepero) on


Let me be your Pippi Longstocking, and I promise I will swing my pig-tails the highest.

EDIT – Vogue India reported about Péro’s fall/winter 2016 collection called ‘Pippi goes to Poppy Fields’.

#poppy #season ♥️ #pippilongstocking #pippigoestopoppyfields #badgeholder #poppyflower #backtoschool #backbencher #pippi #FW16 #AW16 #AIFW #braids #upsidedown #pippi #freckles #pippisocks #longstockings #winterwear #handmadewithlove #allcolorsarebeautiful #checkered #fallinlove #blackandwhite #love

A photo posted by p é r o ® (@ilovepero) on

It said – The  collection is based on Astrid Lindgren’s character Pippi Longstocking. It is about the measured yet loose structure of education and how learning happens both inside and outside of the classroom.

1️⃣ péro 'Pippi Goes to Poppy Fields' Lookbook up on 👀♥️ #pippilongstocking #pippigoestopoppyfields #badgeholder #poppyflower #backtoschool #backbencher #pippi #FW16 #AW16 #AIFW #braids #upsidedown #pippi #freckles #pippisocks #winterwear #handmadewithlove #allcolorsarebeautiful #checkered #fallinlove #blackandwhite #uniform 🗓 in stores now 👍🏾

A photo posted by p é r o ® (@ilovepero) on

Both are necessary—the grid-like gingham checks that keep things in place and the paper airplanes that make dust of chalky lines. The poppies are omnipresent on the woolen dresses and coats like Pippi’s warmth. Embroidered by Péro, this motif becomes permanent for Pippi–just like the freckles on her cheeks.



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