Frida Kahlo; the Mexican revolutionary, the artist, the surrealist, the dreamer, the enigma, continues to inspire art, design and fashion more than 50 years after her death. Kahlo’s work associated with indigenism, and surrealism is a stark portrayal of her personal pain and passion. Frida, the person and her Art, defy conformity or definition. Volatile and obsessive, she oscillated between despair and hope, agony and ecstasy. She embodied an intense ‘lust for life!’ Her paintings, mostly self-portraits and still life, were filled with vibrant colors and Mexican folk elements. Frida’s passionate and turbulent marriage survived infidelities, divorce, remarriage, bad health and childlessness…finally culminating in Frida’s death, with a broken heart.

“I love you more than my own skin, even though you don’t love me the same way. I am a clumsy human, always loving, loving, loving. And loving. And never leaving.”

‘Forbidden Love’, my Spring Summer ‘18 collection is an ode to Frida; the woman, the painter, the magical surrealist, the revolutionary, the lover, the lonely soul! I have been inspired by her life and work for over a decade and she resides deep within my subconscious. Her vibrant usage of colour, vivid interpretation of emotions, stark expression of pain, unfulfilled romance; physical and emotional trauma touches the deepest core of one’s heart. I feel like I have been drawn into the love, life and struggles of Frida, as she lived half a century ago.

The soul of this collection lies in its random, unexpected, bohemian aesthetic…I have allowed myself to wander wherever my imagination took me. I cannot define specific colours, silhouettes, fabrics, embroideries, as I have not followed any of those norms or direction. This season’s look is an eclectic blend of organic fabrics, vivid colours, eccentric combinations, warm details, random weaves, bold checks, vibrant prints and experimental treatments, all of which co-exist in complete harmony.

This has been an inward journey, deep into my heart, where I have revisited my most intense emotions that normally lie buried in everyday life. In ‘Forbidden Love’, I have found expression to my love, lust, pain, anger, desire, joy, fear, disappointment, heartbreak, acceptance, contentment and celebration.It has been a fulfilling journey of Love and celebration of Life!!

Spring of 25

I take great pride and joy in sharing my 25th Spring in Fashion!! I returned to India many moons ago, with stars in my eyes and hopes in my heart. I have fallen and risen, broken and pulled myself together, laughed and wept, failed and succeeded, and here I am today, grateful for the lessons learnt, friendships I have discovered and cherished, hearts I have bonded with and destinies I have shared along the way — “Payal Jain”

Payal’s journey in the fascinating world of couture has a humble beginning from the by lanes of Delhi, where she grew up in a childhood steeped profusely in art, culture and music. The years of intensive hard work cumulated when she graduated from FIDM, California and returned home to start a career in fashion. She ventured back to India at a time when the fashion industry was in its infancy and there was no organized retail. The struggles of the initial years are still amongst her fondest memories.

She has come a long way in 25 years to be recognized as one of the leading designers in the country. In the past two decades, Payal Jain is synonymous with a classic and timeless signature style, where each ensemble created is an enriched synthesis of heritage fabrics and craftsmanship. A strong foundation in neo-classical aesthetics coupled with an unparalleled standard of perfection is the essence of Payal’s designs. With understated silhouettes and an extraordinary sense of style, her designs speak an international language. Forms and fabrics that bond in ingenious ways, fabrics that are esoteric yet blend into myriad and unusual silhouettes, bear the Payal Jain signature.


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