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101 Neeta and Nishka Lulla on Thats Total Mom Sense with Kanika Chadda-Gupta (3)

101: Neeta Lulla & Nishka Lulla Mehra — By Design: A Mother’s Bond, Life, and Legacy

101: Neeta Lulla & Nishka Lulla Mehra — By Design: A Mother’s Bond, Life, and Legacy 1920 1080 Chase Jennings

I am so thrilled to do this interview as it’s with a mother and daughter duo I am blessed to have as dear family friends and I’ve had the opportunity to witness their evolution and impact on the fashion and film industry on the global scale, first hand.

They are Neeta and Nishka Lulla.

Neeta Lulla symbolises elegance, romance and opulence. Her designs are a unique blend of feminine fragility and power. Using India’s rich cultural heritage of craftsmanship, embroidery techniques and textiles Neeta Lulla creates her representation of Indian Bridal and diffusion wear that draws style inspirations from Edwardian silhouettes and patterns yet remains deeply rooted in tradition and forms.

Neeta Lulla is one of the most celebrated and respected names in the Indian fashion industry today. Counted amongst India’s top bridal fashion designers she has created nothing short of a legacy in the fashion and film industry in a career spanning over 30 years.

Starting her journey at the young age of 16, Neeta Lulla finished her formal education in Dressmaking and Apparel construction from SNDT University after which she got her first job with the famous fashion choreographer Jeanne Naoroji. Crediting her time there having taught her about how a fashion show is designed she later returned to her alma mater SNDT as a lecturer and thoroughly enjoyed her experience teaching.

She was soon offered her first film project to style. Taking the opportunity head on Neeta Lulla impressed everyone with her creativity and skill and in no time became one of the most celebrated designers of Bollywood having worked with leading directors and actors of the industry.

In 2005 Neeta Lulla launched her flagship store in Mumbai, to cater to her growing global clientele. Bridal, trousseau consultancy and diffusion wear are the primary offerings of Neeta Lulla label.

In 2008 she became the first designer to launch her online retail platform and by 2009 she established her distribution network over 5 continents. With the growing demand for her designs she was proud to recently launch her second flagship store in DLF Emporio, Delhi in 2016. Whether it was incorporating Tanjore paintings in her designs to introducing pre stitched sarees in India in 2001 or Fibre Optics to her collection in 2017 she has always been on the forefront of curious exploration and experimentation. Hence, she also been named as the ‘Czarina of Indian Fashion’.

Neeta lives in Bombay with her husband Dr. Shyam Lulla, and they have two children, Siddharth and Nishka,.

Neeta’s daughter Nishka was born into fashion and it style and an eye for design is in her blood.

Nishka Lulla Mehra also graduated from SNDT College, Mumbai and is also a design consultant for the fashion brand ‘Provogue’ and for the shoe brand ‘Mochi’ in India. Her label ‘Nisshk’ launched in 2009 has a chic, vibrant and funky clothing line consisting of dresses, shorts, jump suits and skirts and the embellishments are catchy, innovative and versatile using unusual materials to create the perfect coordinated look. Her label also has a range of accessories like clutches, bags and watches.

A moment I had a chance to witness while working as a television anchor for CNN in India was Nishka’s debut at Lakme Fashion Week. She won a competition out of 100 GenNext designers to design an outfit and collection for Katrina Kaif, the brand ambassador for Barbie. When she sashayed down the ramp, it was a defining moment for Nishka and what was to come.

Nishka is settled in Bombay with her husband Dhruv Mehra and has a daughter, Miraya.

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Marylou Luther on That's Total Mom Sense with Kanika Chadda-Gupta

026: Marylou Luther — A Lifetime In Fashion

026: Marylou Luther — A Lifetime In Fashion 1024 512 Chase Jennings

Marylou Luther on That's Total Mom Sense with Kanika Chadda-Gupta

Residing in New York, making her mark in Los Angeles, and hailing from a small town in Nebraska, Marylou Luther is a fashion industry legend. She had little exposure to fashion when she began her career at The Lincoln Journal and The Des Moines Register. Fast forward forty years and she became the Creative Director of Fashion Group International, Editor of the International Fashion Syndicate, CFDA Award winner, syndicated Clotheslines columnist and more. “Marylou’s bi-annual, ready-to-wear trend report for FGI — narrated in her signature authoritative, sophisticated voice, sets the seasonal tone with her much anticipated summaries. It’s no wonder her trend reports are followed by industry professionals in 28+ regions all over the world.”

Marylou and I have our own special story of how we crossed paths. We met in 2009 at Lakmé Fashion Week in Mumbai, India, and when we got to chatting, we discovered we both have ties to CNN (I was Chief Fashion Correspondent for the CNN affiliate in India; her son Walter has been an acclaimed video journalist for the bureau in New York for the past 30 years), have a penchant for Parisian cuisine, prefer our coffee with a spoonful of vanilla ice cream, and are members of the Gamma Phi Beta sorority. Long lost sorority sisters (nearly sixty years apart) meeting for the first time in India? We think there’s only one word to describe it – “serendipity.” I am so thankful to have my 88-year-old gal pal, mentor, and soul sister in my life. Cheers to you, Marylou!

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Show Notes:

  • 02:00 – Introduction
  • 04:24 – Childhood
  • 08:30 – Marylou’s first editorial gig
  • 13:30 – The 50’s and 60’s (“the decade that changed everything”)
  • 15:40 – Yves Saint Laurent taking over the House of Dior
  • 22:00 – Marriage and kids
  • 24:30 – Navigating motherhood
  • 27:20 – Quote of the day: “Don’t worry about anything over which you have no control.”