Hailing from Nagaland, designer Lhusano Zakiesato describes herself as ‘an ordinary girl with big dreams’. Her spirit is not unlike many talented young people from the region who may come from small cities and towns but they have proved time and again that they are a force to be reckoned with when they put their minds to something. Lhusano started way earlier than her peers and made her share of mistakes but nothing could stop this driven young designer, which is why her label Lusano Designs is getting the kind of attention it is. We find out more about her and her label.
How did you start designing?
Like any other fashion student, I graduated from INIFD, New Delhi in 2014. Well honestly, at that time, I considered that I made the decision in a rush. It was only later that I realised it was the best fit and that I had made the right choice.
When did you start Lusano Designs and where are you based?
I launched Lusano Designs with the opening of a small boutique in 2014, at Hauz Khas village, New Delhi. Looking back, I might have rushed into opening a store right after my graduation, but it was a huge learning experience on how the market works. And I couldn’t be more thankful to my parents for their continuous support.
At the moment, I’m based in Nagaland, not because I couldn’t make it in the city but because I chose to grow and get inspired from the hidden roots of my State.
What fabrics do you use and what is your favourite one to work with?
This is my favourite question. My love for textiles has led me to work with a variety of fabrics and gradually I found a profound interest working on woven fabrics produced by the oldest method i.e. weaving. Weaves also plays a major role in my State. I also try and work with organic and eco-friendly fabrics as much as I can. Sustainable fashion is the next trend that I really want to promote and work on for as long as I can.
What do you think sets you apart from other labels?
Firstly, I believe that every hardworking and aspiring designer has his/her own design concept and that is what makes each one of us different from one another. But if I have to set myself apart, I am hoping that Lusano Designs can, in any small way, help change how we look at fashion. Maybe we can start viewing it in an ethical way and show people how fashion is not all about deep slits and red carpets.
What inspires you? –
Anything that has its own beauty, something to treasure, and to learn from, instantly inspires me to want to do something about it.
How would you define fashion? –
Fashion is already defined in the best possible ways. For me, being an experimental designer myself, I would say that trying out new ways to style and create something out-of-the-box but still wearable is how I look at fashion.
What are the different products you make and sell? –
At the moment, it’s just me and a handful of workers working together to create something wearable and different for fashionable women. I haven’t really expanded from working on women’s wear.
People can find my collections on my Facebook shop page. You can also follow me on Instagram (@Lusanozakiesato). I keep my collections updated on there, and for any enquires, people can DM me.
My collections range from pocket friendly pieces to contemporary cocktail pieces that you wouldn’t mind spending some extra on! It is about INR 2500 onwards.
I will definitely continue doing what I love, designing and creating wearable garments with love for fashion loving women all over the world. Also, look out for my new collection. It will be a modern take on Nagaland inspired beauty.
By Meeta Borah
The article was first published in Eclectic Northeast Jan 2019 issue