The Powder Room by Shefalee Vasudev was highly recommended by a friend of mine. But I was rather hesitant to buy this book, as reading about fashion is not my favorite subject. Let me make it clear, I am no intellectual snob, I do like many of the brands, accessories and clothes: but it is just that, fashion is not on my priority list.
But I had never explored fashion as a genre, that’s how I got intrigued by the book and decided to buy it. Another interesting aspect for me is that, The Powder Room happens to be a non fiction book. And I am a huge fan of non fiction category. I know, I must be sounding like one of those book nerds you all come across, from time to time.
Shefalee Vasudev has been a journalist for a very long time, writing on culture, social trends and fashion. Infact, she was the first editor of Marie Claire in India and the Powder Room is her debut novel.
The book has 10 different real stories/chapters and each and every story has been told in an engaging, insightful and interesting manner. It shows that the book is well researched and factual.
There were some stories, that kept me spellbound, and some that I already knew about Indian fashion industry.
I liked the fact that the book was not only about big fashion designers, models, wannabes, but also about small tailors, grassroot level weavers, small and big entrepreneurs.
Yes, you will also get to read about fashion greats like Rohit Bal, Ritu Kumar etc. It also talks about the dying art of traditional hand looms in India. It certainly got me pondering on the traditional hand loom industry in India and how we as people, help reviving it.
The chapter on Ludhiana Ladies had me in splits. You will also get to read about fashion from different Indian states from Karnataka to Maharashtra, Gujarat, to Delhi, Punjab and Nagaland.
Whether you like fashion or not, Powder Room makes for an interesting read. If you have already read the book, let me know your take on it. For the others who haven’t read the book, you should give it a try. Powder Room will certainly not disappoint you.