The Nakhrewaali Story
NakhreWaali was founded on the 31st of October 2015 by Gursakhi Lugani. She had a vision to show the world the outcome of her love, to show the world what became of close to a year of experimenting with accessories she loved. The compliments it fetched her gave her the confidence to put it out to the world. Spearheading NakhreWaali for over 2 years has been an experience beyond anything she had ever hoped for and she’s more than glad that you’re here looking at her work, or as she likes to call it, her babies.
Gursakhi was born in Delhi in the year 1993. Being brought up in Amritsar she quickly gained a skill set that people began to notice. At 4, she was training to be a classical singer, at 6 she was an accomplished painter for her age, at 7 she won an inter city dance competition and took part in the nationals for skating, even winning a medal along the way. She had her creative juices flowing and as always, life took it’s path and somehow landed her in a job in HR. However that never felt like a true calling. And despite being physically at her work place, her mind was elsewhere. Her mind was racing with ideas and thoughts about how she could do something more with her life. After half a year of running a duel career, she took the plunge and got into running her own brand. Through her self proclaimed superior social media skills and marketing strategies she took to the world her brand with never before seen designs. She doesn’t come from a fashion background, her only education in the field being a summer course from the London College of Fashion. However she wore what she loved, and the people around her seemed to love her for it.
Her vision for NakhreWaali has always been, wear what you love, style how you love and find the Nakhras within you. She welcomes you to the NakhreWaali family because you, just like everyone reading this with all your feelings and all your emotions are the real NakhreWaali.
It’s the year 1757. The western world is on the brink of an industrial revolution. The British are taking over the world with an army that can go head to head with all the forces of the world. They land in India. They loot, steal and rob the wealth of the country. For 200 years, India is under British Raj. They rob her of her gold. They rob her of her money. They rob her of her Kohinoor diamond. As a result, by the time they leave, India is left in poverty. In illiteracy. In unemployment. Yet it remains rich in culture, rich in diversity, rich in a thirst to take on the world as a newborn. I have seen India grow. Today, it has it’s metros. The cities to compete with the best cities in the world. Cities with their, “We can take on the world” bravado.
With them out there, loud, headstrong, almost “I’m the best there is, despite my flaws” attitude. Yet there is an India, where a person sits alone in a corner of an unknown hill beside a lake weaving a handicraft or stitching his granddaughter’s sweater. An India, which is quieter than the quietest place in the world. Very submissive, very shy, very unaware, very beautiful. There are two Indias. One never gets in touch with the other. Both of them exist together, yet far apart from each other. What happens when you take the headstrong, loud India and mix it with the shy, submissive India is where our story begins.
31st of August, 2015. Dastakar, Andheria More, New Delhi. Two girls, living in a metro, raised in a small part of the country stand in the capital. They’re on the hunt for me. Taking parts from everywhere to build me. Living where they live, they’ve become accustomed to the ways of the city, the ways of the world. They’re willing to bend the rules to be able to get what they want, because that’s what the city has taught them, even though it’s not in coherence with their roots. As in the markets of Delhi, bargaining is nothing short of a national sport. The karigar, who hails from a small village in Gujarat, says that he has to stick to the price he mentioned because he needs to a pay a commission to the people who own the land for every product he sells. “Oh, why don’t you do this off the record? Don’t mention that you sold this product, cut off the commission price and give it to us for a lower amount?” says one of the girls, slightly aware that what she’s saying is not what she has been brought up with. The karigar looks deep into her eyes and says “Madam, hum galat kaam nahi karenge, unhone ne hume jagah di hai apna kaam dikhane ke liye, unhe dhokha nahi denge.” (Ma’am, we won’t do wrong. They gave us a place to showcase our work, we can’t double cross them). This may have felt like a passing line to everyone around, but it meant way more to the two girls whose roots were from the same school of thought as this man. Very honest, very grounded, very proud. They looked at each other, and shared an understanding smile. No words were spoken, yet their brains were in overdrive, “A world exists. A happier world. A cleaner world. A world where our roots belong.” Standing in a corner, watching over them, I breathed a sigh of relief. The right people were looking in the right places for me. 12th of September, Brahma Temple, Pushkar, Rajasthan I had to be sure though. Often times, people go in search of an idea, or a thought that they think they deserve, but somewhere in the quest to find perfection, in a quest to find beauty, they get lost. I had to know that the passion of the girls won’t die. We stand in Pushkar, on the steps of the only Brahma temple in the world. If you’ve never been to Pushkar, the Brahma temple at its peak hour (1:30pm before the temple shuts for an hour and a half) has people rushing about hoping to get into the temple, as in most parts of India, a lot of pushing and shoving incurs. 1:20 pm on the 12th of September finds our women, standing on the marble steps barefooted. It’s 1:20pm, the sun is blazing and they’re rushing to ensure that they get their prashaad to donate in worship. I decided to watch over them, I had to know if they believed in everything that the feeling stood for. As they get pushed around while trying to tiptoe on the hot stone, they look for change to give to the person selling the prashaad. It’s 1:22 pm, the temple shuts in 8 minutes. The man looks at them and says, “Arrey jaiye jaiye, aapke darshan miss ho jaenge. Paise waapsi pe araam se nikaal ke de dena.” (Go ahead, you’ll miss your worship. You can pay me when you head back).
All thoughts of the hot floor abandoned. It was as if someone had turned down the volume on the noise the thousands of worshipers were making. A simple sentence, spoke of trust, of honesty, of an idea not known, of a thought so pure. They looked at each other and shared an understanding smile. No words were spoken, yet their brains were in overdrive, “This is the world. An honest world. A world we want to show to the rest of the world.” They go to the temple only to come back a quarter of an hour later in the hustle and bustle of the exiting crowd. They search through the thousands of exciters and find the one man who was kind enough, who was trusting enough to give them something with a promise that they’ll eventually repay him. They find him and they pay him, not only because it was the right thing to do, but because it was the feeling of doing something that had to be done, that feeling of doing something that isn’t done enough. That feeling that you have to start somewhere to walk the less walked path of achieving a dream. That was my final assurance. I had to seize to be just a thought or an idea. The right people had found me. I had to materialize, I had to let these women show the world what their imagination meant to them. Today, the day you read this. India A thought, an idea, an objective is only as strong as the meaning behind it.
But when the meaning is within you, around you and everything you can relate to, it seizes to be just a thought or an idea. It becomes something palpable, almost something you can flaunt to people, something you can hold close to your heart. The idea consumes you, fills you up till it becomes like blood running in your veins. It takes your personality, it becomes whatever you are. You may be a woman or a man, whoever you are, your idea reflects who you are. While it may be headstrong and loud, it can still be shy, submissive and beautiful. It may be independent and carefree, but a part of it remains vulnerable and cautious. It becomes strong in your moments of strength, weak in your moment of weakness. Happy in your moments of joy, sadness in your moments of dismay. You wear the idea, you live the idea till you can’t think of a moment in your life without it. I am that idea. An idea that has been present for centuries. An idea that was around before the British invaded India. An idea that evolved with time. An idea that two girls brought up in a small town had. An idea that two women who evolved living in a metro went on the search that they, and now you hold close to your heart. An idea that they hope from their bottom of their hearts that you have as much fun living as they had creating.
What am I? Who am I? Am I a thought? Am I an idea? Am I a person? Am I living? Or am I a figment of your imagination? I am India. I am the India that was robbed by the British. I am the India that has the loud and headstrong Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and Kolkata. I am the India that has the quiet and beautiful Leh, Pushkar, Kozhikode and Darjeeling.
I am diverse.
I am Art. I am the Art that’s beautiful. I am the Art that makes you think. I am the Art that’s within you. I am the Art that raises a question. I am that, that makes you doubt yourself. I am that, that makes you proud of yourself. I am passion.
I am a Friend. I am the Friend that’s a part of you. I am the Friend that you’re annoyed with. I am the Friend you want to tell your darkest secrets to. I am the Friend you hug when something is amiss. I am love.
I am a Woman. I am the Woman who is shy. I am the Woman who is independent. I am the Woman who can win against a man. I am the Woman who needs a man to love me. I am the Woman who is submissive. I am the Woman who has the authority. I am desire.
I am a feeling. I am a touch. I am the thought that doesn’t let you sleep. I am a happiness that warms your heart. I am the feeling that gets you through a rough day. I am the sadness that teaches you about life. I am the joy that makes your life worth living. I am the smile that lights a fire in your eyes. I am inside you. I am around you. I am you. I am me. I am all of us. I am, NakhreWaali.