For each tie, knot and approach utilized in its baggage, Behno has a narrative. The worldwide purse label headquartered in New York — with manufacturing items throughout India — had its homecoming not too long ago, as Shivam Punjya, its founder, launched retail operations in India.
Lodged inside Behno’s signature knots are tales of how artisanal communities come collectively to champion a greater world forward of them whereas studying and standing up for one another. The “union” of artisanal communities is according to Behno, which denotes sisterhood. “It comes from the phrase behen (sister) that girls working in factories name one another,” says Shivam, who’s shuttling between Mumbai and New York “main a nomadic life.” However his coronary heart, identical to his creations, is rooted in India.
In a kaleidoscope of colors — from traditional white, black and tan to metallics and sweet crush tones — Behno’s baggage now have a seal of approval from Katrina Kaif, who, in March, grew to become an investor and in addition the model ambassador of the corporate. ”Katrina is a world icon. She’s serious about conscious consumption. She has determined to be extra intimately concerned and in addition has references for shoots,” says Shivam.
A former healthcare skilled, Shivam was in India in 2013 to analysis public insurance policies within the nation for a venture . He was working extensively with ladies in Jaipur and Hyderabad. Most of them have been staff from the textile trade, he recollects. Shortly after the Rana Plaza constructing collapsed in Bangladesh, and brought about the loss of life of 1000-plus garment staff, Shivam was disturbed and couldn’t cease speaking about it. His household suggested him to both make peace with what occurred or leap in and do one thing. He selected the latter.
Ultimately Behno took form, beginning out as a ready-to-wear garment model. Shivam additionally got here up with what he calls The Behno Normal that lists six classes: ladies’s rights, healthcare, garment employee social mobility, household planning, eco-consciousness, and employee satisfaction and advantages. He works with factories that embody these practices.
“We did about 5 ready-to-wear collections. We began designing purses to go along with the clothes in our look books. We seen shoppers have been gravitating in the direction of the baggage. That was the rationale for us to pivot, he says. “The Indian market must entry a product at an accessible worth level. Behno’s baggage right here begin at ₹7,000. It took a while , and now we’re right here,” he says, including that some baggage are being particularly designed for the Indian market. “We wish to be certain all functionalities are coated.”
As a acutely aware model, Behno has distanced itself from seasons. Whereas they drop new merchandise, replace colors and add silhouettes, it doesn’t proliferate like a rash each season. Right here, there is no such thing as a deadline on color or fashion. “For me, a purse is timeless. It’s speculated to be worn as a lot as you may.”
The quiet luxurious wave works properly for Shivam as he doesn’t consider in loud logos. His designs are rooted in minimalism. ”Our baggage have debossed logos on them, maintaining our components extra minimal. There are hidden components to the bag that solely the consumer will know: just like the wave element on our locks, which is seen when the flap is opened; or the inverse of our “b” emblem positioned behind the flaps of our Ina sequence…” he explains, including, “These delicate components will stand the check of time. If a bag is clear and practical, you may put on it with something, anytime,” he provides.
The merchandise are solely made in India, together with the leather-based, which can also be sourced from right here. “We used to make use of imported leather-based. We’re wrapping up our sourcing from Venice. We work with three completely different tanneries in Chennai, every specialising in various kinds of leather-based,” explains Shivam, including that the baggage are manufactured in factories in Kolkata and Nashik. Whereas there’s a stigma hooked up to the leather-based trade, he’s completely happy to see extra ladies becoming a member of one of many leather-based factories he works with in Calcutta. “Onboarding a manufacturing facility is an extended course of as we’re explicit about high quality. Each rupee is invested in the direction of craftsmanship. There may be coaching in order that they get every part proper, together with little particulars like how we do a sew line or edge portray. Luxurious, he believes, shouldn’t be outlined by worth level however craftsmanship.
He’s fast to level that every one the leather-based getting used is a by-product of the meals trade. A vegetarian who wears a whole lot of leather-based, Shivam says, “The cattle trade globally has grown 20 % 12 months on 12 months. This implies there’s going to be a whole lot of byproduct from this trade. If there’s waste it’s our accountability to make use of the waste mindfully quite than sending them to landfills.”