FROM THE FRONT ROW: BuddhiBatiks

BY Colombo Swimweek
July 18, 2016

Joining her family business Buddhi Batiks in January 2005, Darshi Keerthisena-de Livera aspired to push the batik industry into the contemporary fashion market. Her showing at Colombo Fashion Week 2007 earned her a place at the Bangalore Fashion Week alongside reputed Indian designers such as Tarun Tahiliani, Rohit Bal and JJ Valaya. Orders received from that show have led to her retailing in top design stores in Bangalore and Chennai, India. She has represented Sri Lanka as the national winner of the British Council’s International Young Fashion Entrepreneur for 2008, and in New Delhi at the Fashion Development Council of India’s SAARC show.

“The Buddhi Batiks collection for Swim Week is built on our usual classical inspiration. While the collection as a whole is tied together by florals, I would describe it as encompassing three mini collections in terms of the patterns used. A geometric pattern was used as a modern take on mixing flowers with stripes to incorporate a sporty element to the collection, a denim print was mixed with a bright yellow floral print and finally, a soft, feminine watercolour flower was used on some of the pieces. The silhouettes feature flounces and cutouts.” 

ON THE IMPORTANCE OF SWIM WEEK COLOMBO

“Swim Week Colombo has been an immense event for the swimwear industry in Sri Lanka. When Buddhi Batiks launched our first swimwear collection in 2008 in collaboration with Linea Aqua, no other local designers were doing swim. Even if there were local swimwear labels, it was only companies that did swim, not designers. In that aspect, Swim Week Colombo is very important because it has opened the doors for designers to work with a company like Linea Aqua and come up with their own swimwear collections. It is a great opportunity for me as a designer to reach the international market.”

ON HOW TO APPROACH AND BUY SWIMWEAR

“My advice would be to give swimwear a chance. Pick what is appropriate for you and what you feel would not attract unnecessary attention in the situation you see yourself in. Consumers nowadays are given an array of options. It’s really each person’s choice, so long as they pick what looks flattering on their body. Even then, each person knows their own body best.”