Fashion designing is a field of art that requires precision, meticulousness and immense rigour to reach a level to be recognised and acknowledged for your work. Ritu Puri, a well-known name in Goa’s fashion fraternity, is one such example of dedication and determination. Her fashion label – Ritu’s Creations – has become a hallmark of designer couture in Goa. Ritu is a local celebrity who is admired by many Non-Goans who have been residing in Goa for many years, and also by many high-society Goans.
Ritu shares with us her solo journey from Delhi to Goa and how she became a celebrated ‘fashionista’ in the paradise land.
A strong, new-age woman entrepreneur, Ritu has come a long way in her field of styling and fashion. She completed her 3-year degree course in Fashion and Textile from a premium institute in Delhi – National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT). She also did a 1-year designing programme from LCC institute.
After accomplishing her professional programme in fashion, Ritu found an opportunity to work with Pragya Samore, a renowned designer in the Indian fashion fraternity. Ritu spent quality time working and training under the flagship brand of Pragya Samore. She fully managed their brand store as the Store Manager for three years.
Ritu gained valuable experience working with a big brand as ‘Samore’ and many other fashion export houses that handled renowned clothing brands. She worked as the Designer and Merchandiser for those export houses and learned the fundamentals of fashion, from manufacturing, production, and shipping, for the domestic and international markets.
“Handling a team of 500 workers is not cake walk at all,” says Ritu. She adds, “Leading a team of workers, who are predominantly men, is quite challenging. Usually, women managers are never taken seriously or even adhere to their instructions by such a large team of men (who are largely labour class). But I learnt a way to handle them and got the work done on time. The only way to get through to them is to be polite and respectable while being strict. I was able to that comfortably.”
She even worked with a packaging company called Lynx as the Divisional Head where she managed a team of 16 merchandisers. Working up the success ladder in her area of expertise, Ritu was able to reach a level where she could take on the world head-on to make her dreams a reality.
Ritu is a very people’s person, and perhaps that is why she was able to pave the path to be a successful woman entrepreneur.
The Rise of the Fashionista in Goa
After acquiring good years of experience in Delhi, Ritu moved to Goa in the year 2007 after her marriage. With her diligence and people’s skills, Ritu was able to quickly connect with the people here and create a network in the fashion fraternity of Goa. Her networking skills got her multi-fold opportunities as a freelance designer for various projects with established fashion stores.
Ritu shared, “The networking got me connected with renowned fashion photographer Prasad Pankar. His assistant – Grace – got in touch with me for their requirement of a Fashion Designer. Prasad wanted a designer who could work along with him for their Iconic Fashion Calendar photo shoots. It was a golden opportunity for me.” This connection opened the floodgates of numerous business prospects for Ritu in the new city.
With strong support from her family, especially her husband Nakul, Ritu used her vast experience and polished skill set to set up her own branded couture studio called – “Ritu’s Creations” in 2015. Her first flagship studio located in Porvorim retails and also does made-to-order designer gowns for the high-society audiences of Goa. After achieving this milestone, there was no stopping her.
Today, Ritu is well-known and one of the most sort-after designers in Goa. She has an impressive clientele and a long list of loyal customers.
Ritu’s Creations has become a brand associated with fashion shows that are unique and meaningful. Post her success with Goa fashion fraternity, Ritu got the spotlight on her because of an exclusive fashion show she organised called the “Curves & Beauty – Meet the Real Women”.
The show gave her a tremendous amount of recognition and appreciation for her designer dresses presented in the show. The theme of the show was different because she chose women who were not professional models to walk the ramp in her designer couture.
“Through my fashion show, I wanted to send out a message that all women, regardless of shape or size, are beautiful. And a good dress will always look good on a body with a beautiful soul. You need to respect women for who they are and not just for their looks.,” She commented.
Ritu focuses on attending to women clientele of all age-group. Her forte is primarily in designing gowns, but she also has the expertise in indo-western dresses. She is recently launching a new range of clothing line using drapes, which is a new trend in fashion. She even started her venture – Ritu Puri’s Haute Couture – exclusively showcasing the high-end designer dresses.
Ritu is associated with the WLDC-INIFD. She is called in as a guest faculty to give lectures and take workshops on fashion designing.
Paving the path for a glorious future
Ritu has received a lot of respect and recognition for her work from Goa’s fashion industry. It has been possible only because of her hard work, dedication, immense talent and years of experience. With over 16years of experience in the fashion industry, working in major metros with celebrated clientele, and then setting her business in a small but classy market of Goa, Ritu has achieved success at multiple levels.
Ritu’s fashion mantra is, “Clothes aren’t going to change the world, but, the women who wear them will.” She adds, “I don’t design a garment just because I was asked to do so. I weave a woman’s dream that makes her look beautiful.”
Ritu has made many women happy and confident through her designer wear. Not only the Goans, but few celebrities have been part of Ritu’s shows. At the Incredible Goa Awards 2018, Kevin D’mello – the star actor of Goa film industry, walked the ramp as the showstopper for her exclusive show that evening.
Ritu is a woman you cannot stop. She is still going strong and has penned down her plans for the future. It is quite an exciting year for her with her hands full with numerous projects. She is participating in a show called ‘Synergy’ that is happening on June 23rd where she will again showcase her masterpieces on the ramp.
In October this year, she is coming back with her hit fashion show – Curves and Beauty – in a new avatar. Ritu has also grabbed an opportunity overseas. She is designing gowns for a friend’s daughter who will be participating in a beauty pageant in the USA this year.
The U.S project will open a window of opportunity for her in the international arena. And using her brilliant experience and expertise, Ritu will be opening up a fashion academy in Panjim in 2019.
Ritu is an example of today’s woman entrepreneur, who is not afraid of challenges and rigour, is a go-getter, and confident in what she believes. She follows her passion and has overcome challenges to make her dream a reality. She has a message for aspiring fashion designers who want to be part of this field –
“Be confident in what you do and what you believe. You should do it with your heart. You should not be afraid of hard work and never get intimidated by people who try to put you down. Be committed to your dreams. With this, there is nothing that can stop you from achieving your dreams.”
With this strong message, Ritu spears forward like a warrior princess, the fashionista who is gearing forward on a self-made path of success.