The Mughal dynasty – one of the greatest that ever ruled our Indian soil. Though the Mughals are no more, but their legacy continues to exist in India through the beautiful architecture that we see around us, the Persian Art that they brought from far lands, the Mughal cuisine to tantalize the taste buds and the breath-taking jewelry which I consider the ultimate gift from this dynasty.
These days one gets to see jewelry designer take the modern route when it comes to designing jewelry, the traditional is often forgotten…………..but Designer Alpana Gujral is an exception. She has successfully blended the vintage with contemporary to create the most magnificent pieces.
Alpana Gujral is daughter of India’s eminent painter Satish Gujral who is a man of many talents………..she grew up seeing his beautiful works & learned to appreciate ‘Art’ from a young age. Studied at Delhi School of Art in interior designing, she later ventured into her passion of designing jewelry………….I can absolutely say that if I have to turn to a designer who has in-depth knowledge about Indian jewelry it will only be Alpana Gujral.
The amazing colours, the use of a variety of gemstones, the carving on every single piece……………it is like she treats every creation of hers as a master-piece. A person like me would want to simply stare and admire this ‘Work of Art’. Alpana extensively uses ancient Indian style of jewelry making like Minakari, Jadau, Polki, Navratan setting……………..she gets the pieces created in Rajasthan and Delhi but showcases it around the world. She has even incorporated her father’s paintings in her creations…….’Art’ displayed in form of jewelry is unheard off…………. Such imagination makes her collection unique for every client. A lady who is known for her elegant style keeps a low profile………….I guess because her beautiful work speaks so much about her.
If I ever wanted to buy a classic piece of jewelry which I could pass on to my next generation…….it would not be the French ‘Cartier’, the American ‘Tiffany’ or an Italian ‘Bvlgari’ but a very Indian ‘Alpana Gujral’. If the Mughals still existed, I am sure Alpana would have given them a very ‘Contemporary’ look which would have made them stand out amongst other Royals.
I am truly fortunate enough to get to interact with Ms.Gujral for a short Q & A session. Despite being busy showcasing her ‘Rang Rasa’ collection in America currently, she managed to take out sometime for answering my questions. I am thankful to her for giving me this wonderful opportunity and present to you a ‘Pioneer’ in designing Contemporary Indian Jewelry in an honest way.
Q & A with Designer Alpana Gujral
1) Creativity is in your blood, but apart from your family what inspired and drew you towards the profession of jewelery making???
Alpana: My passion for jewelry and all things beautiful led me to design. It was my desire for creative expression that took me down this path.
2) You have a range of jewelery made in Jadau, Polki, Pearls and Precious gems set in Gold & silver……….but which collection is close to your heart???
Alpana: My vision comes from my heart so it’s hard to choose. There is continuity in my designs but each piece is distinct in form. The essence of my jewelry remains the same – feminine with floral patterns. Each piece is a vintage revival using different variations with fresh designs and eclectic elements.
3) You have successfully presented Indian traditional jewelry in a contemporary form……….was it difficult for you to get people from abroad to notice your designs when the entire world was looking west??
Alpana: No because there is definitely a niche market for Indian jewelry abroad. In cities like New York, Hong Kong, San Francisco there is a demand for things exotic and foreign.
With India becoming more mainstream, people are taking more of an interest in exploring products from India. It’s this awareness and acceptance that builds the demand. The seasoned buyers are aware and will always come to my shows but it’s also important to educate the curious buyer.
4) Every creation of yours speaks of an exquisite tale, is there a story behind every new collection that you present???
Alpana: Everything and everyone has a story. I strive to capture the essence of beauty in each of my designs while also incorporating a piece of our history. Vision for my jewelry reflects how nature and beauty come together effortlessly, they are intertwined.
As with all Art, there are no facts – only interpretations.
5) What would be your Jewelery style prediction for the upcoming wedding season???
Alpana: While jewelry trends may vary, bridal jewelry is not as volatile……it’s really the contemporary take on traditions that appeals to the bride of today.
6) Future of the jewelery label ‘Alpana Gujral’………..where do you plan to showcase your jewelery line in future??
Alpana: I have a studio in Delhi where I showcase by appointment only.
7) The label ‘Alpana Gujral’ is well known among fashionistas, but what is the personal style of the designer behind this label??
Alpana: Style to me is comfort – it should be effortless – flowing clothes with complementary jewels is my staple look.
I feel that jewelry is wearable Art and clothes are the canvas
You can visit Alpana Gujral’s official website www.alpanagujral.com to view her recent collections and contact details. Make sure you have a prior appointment before you visit her studio.
Photo courtesy : www.alpanagujral.com