small talk with sweet ruchira
The engineer is an artist, too. Their disciplines are science, technology, and math woven together to transform concepts into something tangible. The abstract into something physical. Ruchira Amare is the artistic engineer. First, she earned a bachelor's degree in Technology & Communication Engineering at the University of Mumbai. Then, moved on to study fashion design at Parsons, making it to the dean’s list every semester while there. Ruchira was known to excel in areas of engineering while growing up so pursuing a degree in the field was a natural progression. Her parents enrolled her in art classes at a young age, they urged her to explore her imagination and power as an artist. Now, Ruchira is the artist and engineer of her own clothing line and aristic brand, Y.R. Egon.
The clothing line (and most of her artistic work) was created with her favorite qualities, romanticism and nostalgia, in mind. Back when her parents began to encourage Ruchira to explore her imagination through artwork, she learned to filter harsh realities of day-to-day life with the veil of romanticism. You’ll find elements of romance throughout Ruchira’s creative process: Dying fabrics is done naturally with the use of flowers petals and stems, her fashion sketches feel dreamy and hazy, and her garments pensive and introspective.
Ruchira is the imaginative artist and curious engineer. She's focused on designing gender-neutral garments and discovering sustainable ways to produce clothing. Ruchira wants aspiring designers to explore their capabilities, too, and teaches online courses in the hopes of aiding them along their journey. Take a look below to read Ruchira’s thoughts on creating, combining her engineering skills with her artistic skills, and the benefits of working for other designers.
Protest: You received an engineering degree at the University of Mumbai. How has your education in engineering influenced the art and garment you create?
RA: I was good at mathematics so engineering was an obvious choice. I finished my engineering in Electronics & Telecommunication and then I moved to Fashion Designing. The precision, perspective and accuracy knowledge that I gained from 3D engineering drawings can be seen in my fine art landscape drawings. I also developed an eye for proportions and try to be very accurate with pattern making of the garments that I construct. I would say that construction is my strong suit.
Protest: Tell us little about yourself. What was your life like growing up? What inspired you to become an artist and designer?
RA: I had a great childhood. My mom would always take me to drawing classes and my dad would widen the horizons of my imagination. So early on, I liked drawing and painting but it merely a hobby. But over time, as I evolved, art became a way for me to escape the struggles and pains of the real world. I think this thought inspired me to be more of an artist and less of a person who gets sucked into daily routine. Hence my work mainly revolves around romanticism, dark romanticism and in-between fragments of nostalgia and things lost.
sustainable and gender neutral clothing.Could you tell us what motivated you to focus on Inclusivity and Environment in Fashion?
RA: When I was in school, I took up courses on zero waste designing and creative construction all-encompassing ideas of using limited means and devising design techniques to make the best of the available resources. I care about what I put out in the market and what price the earth is paying for my product. I also realized that my wardrobe includes a lot of clothing or pieces that might not necessarily belong to a particular gender , which is when I realized I need to blur the gender lines a bit for my clothing to be more fluid and I try to do the same when it comes to designing
Protest: You have worked under designers like Donna Karan, Laura Smalls and Peter Speliopoulous. What was your favorite part about your time spent with these designers? What did you learn from them?
RA: I learnt a lot about design process and concepts applied in real world when I used to assist Dona Karan and Peter during the fittings of the fashion show. I understood a sense of style and taste and fashion as a means of expression over the time working for different designers. But the important thing I learnt from all of them is that 'I need to have a unique voice to be successful.'
Protest: Your brand Y. R. Egon is described as
if you are on any part of the world. I was good at illustration and painting so that was a natural progression. Teaching someone a new skill that they can use is a gift and pure joy to watch them succeed using it.
Protest: What can we expect from Ruchira and Y. R. Egon in future? Any new projects coming up?
RA: Yes, I am actually very excited to introduce my own collection under the label Y. R. Egon this April. It will be an exciting time for the brand and me personally. It would be available to shop on my website soon in April. It includes all the characteristics that I spoke about before that makes my distinguished aesthetic as a designer.
Protest: What's something about yourself you love and proud of.
RA: Something I love about myself and that I am proud of is my fighting spirit. I think that light guides the way most of the times in difficult situations.
Protest: You have a really cool way of using natural techniques of dyeing your fabrics and garments. Could you tell us a little about that process?
RA: I dye fabrics using flowers and stems. So, I use cochineal, Madder Root, Dog wood to obtain varying kinds of beautiful colors. It is an added step towards the final production of the garment but totally worth it. It also helps me to keep a check that I am not emitting away harmful chemicals in the environment. The new collection I am working on currently will also have some hand dyed pieces by me.
Protest: You teach online classes focused on Italian Tailoring techniques, Creative Construction and Illustration techniques which is a great way for those not able to get to the classroom to learn. What inspired you to begin teaching others?
RA: I teach online classes for University of Fashion. That is a very useful online resource for anyone to learn about all the skills taught in the school and much more, even
Ruchira Amare is an artist and the designer of the clothing line and, Y.R. Egon. She is currently in the throws of completing the brand's premiere line. She's worked with designers like Donna Karan and Laura Smalls and teaches online courses in clothing design and construction.