Shivani Doshi a bright and enterprising young woman, also an Aamvi goddess, is currently pursuing her BA LLB (Hons.) with her honours subjects being Criminal Law and Intellectual Property Rights. She is a talented poetess and has written and published poetry collections in English and Hindi. She is a voracious reader and enjoys writing her heart's content.
We called Shivani one fine evening and had an interesting conversation with her. Here are some excerpts:
What does sustainable mean to you?
If we think about sustainability in the fashion field, it means having a balanced view. Making clothes look glamorous and fashionable while also taking care of the environment. It’s a conscious choice that a customer makes to invest in sustainable fashion.
Why do you think sustainability is a concern right now?
People have begun to realise that it is time to start saving on the environmental front. Also, fashion is something that keeps evolving, it is not static. Here’s where sustainable fashion comes into picture, trends keep changing so investing in pieces that are not harmful to the ecology while appealing to personal style is a great idea to look forward to.
With so many consumables being available at inexpensive prices, especially fast fashion, what does it take to make a conscious effort to change to sustainable clothing or products?
A change to sustainable life is more or less about how you feel about it and also other factors. The important idea is to understand that investing in a slightly expensive single piece of sustainable clothing is going to last longer than say ten pieces of cheap clothes from the market thereby helping the planet. We hear about a lot of companies and home brands coming up telling people about what sustainability is and I think now people understand more and view it as something to look forward to. Three things are important: Comfort, Choice and Conscience.
Any affordable sustainable brand you would recommend?
Aamvi, definitely I would recommend Aamvi
Let’s deviate a little bit here and talk about a few things you enjoy doing the most in your free time
My free time involves reading only because that’s how my life has been. It could be reading news articles, things related to my field and the works of people like Faiz Ahmed Faiz. I also paint, I paint canvases. I enjoy watching cringe shows and k dramas as well.
What motivates you to do better at what you do?
I would say competition. More or less I believe that if you want to survive in a place where everyone is at par with you, everyone wants to do well. You have a higher notch, if you believe you can. That is the only way, through hard work and consistent hard work.
Do you feel strongly about any cause for which you would be willing to work towards through your writing?
I am a feminist so I belive when you say you are a feminist you are not just advocating women’s rights. Feminism per say is not radical feminism, the feminism that I am talking about is when you are advocating everybody's rights, male, female and others. I try to write about very realistic things, relatable things, that a person like you and me can connect to. Writing for money is an entirely different thing because you are writing it for somebody else and writing what they are telling you to write. You can’t put your own creativity there.
Being eco friendly, do you think is a difficult task in the current world?
I don’t think it is difficult, it’s just that people aren’t aware of it. Awareness is something needed here, it is not difficult or impossible. Eventually we all will have to save the environment, there is no other way out. Lot of things have been happening in this respect like the plastic ban. It’s all just about making a conscious choice.
Sustainable clothing in some sense means investing in ethically sourced good quality pieces that last long but with trends changing by the day and the race to keep up with it, how do you think it'll manifest?
If you’ve got an item of clothing, there are so many different ways in which it can be styled. If I invest in a top, I can find a thousand different ways in which I can wear it. That realisation is what sustainable fashion is about. The ecology is not going to be hampered neither is your style or confidence going to be compromised. I think fashion is something very personal, it all depends on your own comfort.
Something positive you have heard that make you feel good in the past few days
I read somewhere that a teacher, whose school was under lockdown, went to a student’s house while maintaining social distancing because the kid was having an anxiety attack. I think that’s the most beautiful thing that I have heard so far.
An idea that has worked for you and you would like to share to inspire others
I read a lot of Hindi and Urdu literature and Bashir Badr has written one thing that I connect to. It goes like this-
“Ujaale apni yaadon ke hamare saath rahne do, na jaane ki gali mein zindagi ki shaam ho jaaye”
Shivani was kind to share her time with us. Her books can be found on Amazon India.