First some music
. Something I have been hooked on to recently.
“Manjal” translates to both “Turmeric” and as well the color “Yellow” in Tamil . Yellow is the most gleaming of all the colors of the spectrum, therefore, capturing our attention more than any other color. Yellow is the color of happiness, brightness and of sunshine. Food, Health, Beauty, and more importantly, Happiness – it is an essential component for an every day life! The essence of the name exactly denotes the concept of Manjal Couture
Vinodini brand’s founder was born and brought up in a small town in Tamilnadu by the name of Trichy. “Although its not a town in which you would get a lot of exposure, my little town helped me to grow intensively. I was very much into cultural activities since I was a child. I loved the stage. I had participated and won in many theater, dance and speech contests. I started my professional training in Bharathanatyam when I was in grade 5 and there was no looking back since then. I am a dancer first and I am really proud to say that. My dance training is the root cause for everything I am today. Starting from my taste for anything Indian and pretty much to my discipline in life, I owe it to my dance teacher Guru Kalaimamani Charulatha Jayaraman and my parents. My passion for designing Indian wear stems from my lifelong association with the art forms like Bharathanatyam. ”
Vinodini tells me that she always wanted to run her own show and do something creative. Her first designing was for her best friend. She designed her wedding blouses. That’s when it all started and from then onwards she started designing for her friends, family and most of her own outfits.
” My first few collection of sarees got sold out among friends and family like hot cakes. That motivated me to take this online.”
Cotton, silk and brocades are Manjal’s forte. They play around with these fabrics. You can see a fusion of these in their upcoming projects.We love how Manjal allows you to place custom orders from a wide range of their fabrics. They have a lot of customers living abroad who place custom orders with them almost every month. “We restock our fabrics every month and this gives them the luxury of choosing from a wide range of fabrics online. Thanks to whatsapp ! We also take measurements online for almost all of our orders. Manjal Couture aims at making all kinds of clothing, staring from sarees to dresses, from bridal to casual wear.
Inspired by high fashion, contemporary trends and vintage, with fabrics sourced from across the country, Manjal epitomizes the young Indian woman looking for the perfect blend of opulence and elegance.
” We are currently also focusing on up-cycling a lot of Fabrics at our unit which would otherwise go waste . We received an incredible amount of support from our customers when we launched our first set of wall frames which were made of such fabrics . That motivated us to do more upcycling, and less wastage. We now take orders for wall frames, cushion covers and garlands using such fabrics. ” says Vinodini.
“My artisans and customers are my extended family. When I lost my father a couple of months back, the amount of love and support I received from my customers is just incredible. I feel blessed to have found these amazing people through Manjal. I live in the US and our unit is based out in Trichy, Tamilnadu. Designing process happens in the US and bringing them to life happens in Trichy. Most of our shoots are held in Chennai. This is my biggest challenge. I sometimes have to do India shift and stay awake all night, but its all worth it at the end of day. Thanks to my team who even does night shifts in India during busy times. None of this would have been possible without them. I also would like to thank my husband for always being there for me. He constantly keeps checking on what’s happening at Manjal. He is also my best critic. I should say that I am blessed with a wonderful family and friends who keep encouraging me every day. ”
Our personal favorites from Manjal are :
A dress made of plain cotton and Ikkat
An off shoulder dress made of plain cotton & indigo
A halter neck paisley patterned dress
A box pleated dress made of Ikkat and Kalamkari
And their Kalyani Cotton Anarkalis which have always been a superhit
Journey of an entrepreneur is never an easy one . A lot of women we spoke to gave a huge credit to their families for their success. Same goes for Vinodini – she is super talented but managing operations offshore is a tough job . She says she has been blessed with a super supportive family. But we also know that she is also extremely focused and hardworking without which its not possible to taste the success which Manjal has acquired in past few months.
We are looking forward to their new collections and cant wait to turn the town yellow with Manjal !!
To pick up your favorite Manjal dress or Sari and place a custom order follow them on Instagram here.