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Style

Varoin Marwah: The boy in the tailored pajamas

Debonair catches up with the Dubai-based designer as he prepares to showcase his latest collection at Fashion Forward

Fashion is for a season while style is for a reason. You can always buy fashion. Style, however, is what you’re born with.

Varoin Marwah, a Dubai-based fashion designer of Indian origin, has an intuitive sense of the modern man’s psyche, and produces garments accordingly. His launch collection took inspiration from Bollywood’s hip and trendy styles, with a simple colour palette of black and gold.

Marwah’s signature style subtly draws on his Indian roots. He adds a playful element with vibrant colours and unusual patterns. Marwah is known for his clean lines, careful detailing and international silhouettes.

Debonair gets to know him:

My earliest fashion memory… goes back to my childhood, when I used to insist on getting all my clothes tailored — including my sleeping suits. I remember wearing constellation-print pyjamas at the age of 5. Another time I insisted on making purple trousers, which was unusual in those times. My outfits were usually never seen before on others, and that’s something I have grown with. I still try to hold on to my childhood beliefs.

Fashion is for a season while style is for a reason. You can always buy fashion. Style, however, is what you’re born with.

The most stylish item I own is… my collection of jackets. I have too many jackets and blazers in my closet, and they’re suited to different seasons and reasons. One of my favourites is inspired by the lifestyle a single person living in a studio apartment, where storage is usually limited. This super storage jacket is geared towards guys who don’t like to carry bags around. It also transforms into a backpack, which is great.

My most valuable item is… More than any item, it has to be my family and friends. I’m nothing without them.

The difference between fashion and style is… Fashion is for a season while style is for a reason. You can always buy fashion. Style, however, is what you’re born with.

The one look I wish I could pull off is… a romper. It looks perfect on short to average-height men; when I wear it, it looks like I am trying too hard to fit into the trend.

The one item nobody should wear is… That would be an unfair pick, as I believe every item is right for someone or for some occasion. It’s the wrong choice for a particular person or the occasion that makes the item appear wrong. What works on one doesn’t always work on others.

What are your thoughts on accessories? They’re the deal makers. I always tell people accessories are safe investments — if used wisely they can elevate or change the look of any outfit.

When I shop I… shop! I shop from my heart and usually don’t plan it. I find it therapeutic to immerse myself in the process. I avoid doing it often but every now and then I’ll allow myself some quality retail therapy.

Do you prefer bricks or clicks? I believe both have advantages and we must accept that both are here to stay. I love to touch, feel and try on outfits, but other times I’ll order something in hurry. I understand some brands and sizes well, so online shopping works great for me.

Who would you say is the most stylish man to have ever lived? Karl Lagerfeld. He has not just redefined fashion but always looked so stylish. From his hair to his glasses, I loved the way he always carried himself.

If you could invite three designers (past or present) to a dinner party, who would you invite and what would you serve? My three favourites — Giorgio Armani, to understand his clean cuts and lines; Gianni Versace, as he always designed keeping different body types in mind; and Ralph Lauren, to talk about his great collection of cars and his philanthropic activities. Each one of them has contributed so much to the world of fashion. I would love to toast to Louis Roederer Cristal “Gold Medallion” Orfrevres Limited Edition Brut Millésime, to make the evening special.

The one item I can’t live without is… my pen and paper. I can’t live without creating and I can’t create without it.

What I like best about my job is… everything. I feel like I was meant to live this life, which has the ability to touch so many people’s lives. I love being a part of so many special moments in my clients’ lives.

How do you feel about the industry at the moment? Our industry has connected on a global level, and it feels great to be a part of such a beautiful community. Everyone has something special to offer, and art binds us all together.

If I weren’t in the fashion industry, I would… be an art collector. I love art in any form, from paintings to photo frames. I love the history that goes into every piece.

Fashion Forward Dubai is presented at Dubai Design District October 30-November 2. The event strategically evolves into a shop-now fashion platform for its latest edition, showcasing collections immediately accessible to a global audience.

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